They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To

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BigAl
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2003/11/03 08:30:01 (permalink)

They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To

I've lived most of my life in Joliet, IL and remember that the pizza that I use to enjoy in the 50's, 60's and 70's somehow tasted better than what's available today. Local places like Pastore's in Cresthill, Ricco's in Joliet on Jefferson St. and LeBars on Plainfield Rd. were just simply the best I can ever remember having and I've tried most of the best in Chicagoland. All of the pizza's were thin crust and had marvelous cheese and great sausage(not necessarily large chunks Ricco's had little dots of sausage about every 1/2 inch) which together with a very tasty crust made for simply the best pizza I will probably ever taste. Even the old Pizza Box on Raynor had a special taste not found in todays assembly line Pizza's. Unfortunately none survive past the 70's.
#1

21 Replies Related Threads

    marberthenad
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/11/03 19:13:02 (permalink)
    Sigh. While it wasn't the 50s, 60s or 70s, I still remember a place called Eddy's Pizza, which was little more than a corner store with a pizza oven. Eddy's best was his Super Special, which had six kinds of meat, all covered with cheese. mmmmm. back in college, a small Super Special was a meal. Alas, Eddy got old and his son didn't continue the business. Even his "vegetables" pizza, which was about six kinds of vegtables covered in cheese, had a carniverous feel to it.
    #2
    Ort. Carlton.
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/11/03 22:23:57 (permalink)
    Dearfolk,
    We had a wonderful place here in Athens in the 1970's-1980's named Capri Pizzaria. It was family-run; the folks were from Long Island and tired of the ratrace there. Alas, Mama Nancy and Daddy Mike are gone now, and their daughters didn't want to continue the business without them. I salivate Pavlovianly at the very thought of having one more slice of their pie... maybe in another life, if that's possible....
    Everything else in Athens at the time was varying degrees of cardboard-and-sweetened-tomato-paste-with-some-stuff-glued-on-so-you'll-think-it's-real-pizza kind of pizza. Glurch. No wonder I prefer livermush: at least I always know what I'm getting.
    Viscerally, Ort. Carlton, Deep In The Innards Of Athens, Georgia.
    #3
    saltypepper
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/12/20 11:23:00 (permalink)
    That is so true! Growing up in the 70's in Chicago,we used to go to this family owned pizzaria called Vito's on North Avenue and Pulaski,it was just incredible! Real Italian pizza. I cried when they closed.Even though the majority of pizza is good in Chicago,that taste of Vito's has never crossed my lips again,yet.
    #4
    Edwaste
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/12/20 14:37:44 (permalink)
    My own theory is that back in the 50's through 70's the better Pizza parlors used Scamorza cheese or Mozzarella using milk from Water Buffalos. These days Pizza parlors use cheese made from Cow's milk. From what I've been told there is a real difference in taste and texture.
    I would be curious to know if any pizza parlors still use cheese from Water Buffalo milk.


    http://en2.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_buffalo
    http://en2.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mozzarella_cheese
    #5
    peppertree
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/12/20 18:08:05 (permalink)
    People's expectation for a good pizza have been downgraded, thanks to Pizza Hut, Dominoes et. al.

    These national chains use the cheapest bottom of the barrel ingredients. They can sell their pizza for a cheap price. Competitors must lower their own price to stay competitive. Since most people have accepted the cheap ingredients in national pizzas, the small time pizza places must use cheaper ingredients than they used to use before competition from the national chains.

    Thanks to "National Pizza" must of us can not find a good pizza anymore.
    #6
    Grampy
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/12/20 18:23:10 (permalink)
    Anyone nearby Greenfield, Mass, tonight can stop by my house for some of the best pizza anywhere. They will be fresh from the oven in about an hour and a half.
    #7
    Cosmos
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/12/22 11:25:58 (permalink)
    Actually I think we are all just old..."back in the old days pizza used to be pizza..." My Dad spent a good part of his adult life trying to find or recreate the tastes of his youth in NYC...hot dogs, spaghetti, chili, pizza...

    I'm convinced we remember things better than they were. But hell its fun to talk about, and my dad ate a lot of good food in trying to find those tastes.
    #8
    Kristi S.
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/12/22 11:30:42 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by peppertree

    Thanks to "National Pizza" must of us can not find a good pizza anymore.

    I hate when the crust tastes exactly like the cardboard box it came in. BLAARGH
    #9
    Grampy
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/12/22 11:38:52 (permalink)
    Clothier, I've been working on my pizza crust 25 years, and I must say that it has been pretty good. But I just bought Peter Rheinhart's American Pie, and I followed his recipe for New York, New Haven style crust. The pizza was amazing. My family was ready to swallow poison afterwards, because there was nothing else to live for. The crust had the right "chew" but it was perfectly crisp, with those black blisters at the edges. It helps being able to crank an oven up over 600°.
    #10
    Grampy
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/12/22 11:46:38 (permalink)
    Also, Edwaste is right about cheese. You got to use the best. Try mixing different cheeses until you get the taste you are after. Fontina and muenster help whole milk mozzarella -- or "mutz." Commercial places tend to use cheaper tomatoes and get rid of the bitterness with too much sugar. Go with Muir Glen or Italian San Marzano varieties.
    #11
    kland01s
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/12/22 12:02:17 (permalink)
    I agree that the ingedients were better long ago, fresh and not mass marketed. I worked for a little pizza place in Algonquin, Il. in the 1960's and nothing came out of a can, everything was hand cut from fresh and their cheese was made for them by someone in Chicago. Opps, I forgot, the anchovies came out of a can, none of the other teenagers I worked with would touch them so that was my job!
    #12
    renfrew
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/12/22 13:27:06 (permalink)
    they dont make a lot of things like they used to. Teaches you to savor it while you have it.

    In boston, I am happy just to find halfway decent pizza to begin with. I guess i dont have time to compare it with ones i had years ago!!!
    #13
    ahomer
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2003/12/24 16:03:11 (permalink)
    They still make pizza like the used to in Des Moines, Iowa. My wife and I still go to the same place we did as kid's in the 50's. Only the daughter of the founder runs it now. She makes the sausage, dough and sauce all from scratch. The place is called Chuck's. A few months ago we were there and told her we judge all other pizza by her's, and she felt so good she tore up the bill.
    #14
    hermitt4d
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2004/07/17 02:22:01 (permalink)
    When this thread first popped up I was reminded of a place that served excellent pizza that I frequented during my ‘Italian’ period in the mid-70s to early 80s.

    http://www.antonios.com

    I hadn’t been in years but I finally got over there to try it out. I remembered that the ‘bacon’ topping for pizza actually turned out to be pancetta but what really stood out was the cheese, the creamiest, most delicious cheese I had ever had on a pizza, sort of a spiritual awakening to how good mozzarella could be. I assumed it was real mozzarella from water buffalo milk.

    I asked the waiter if they still had pancetta; his answer was that it was just American style bacon. From the way he answered I wasn’t sure he even knew what pancetta is but I didn’t order it. I didn’t ask about the cheese; I wanted to see if I could tell from the taste. I couldn’t. It was still awfully good, still possibly the best pizza I’ve had in Houston, but not as good as I remembered.
    #15
    hermitt4d
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2004/07/17 02:36:07 (permalink)
    BigAl, anyone...

    Ever been to Malnar's Tap in Joliet? A friend was taken there once and raved about the deep dish pizza. How does it compare in your opinion?

    http://www.malnars.com/
    #16
    garykg6
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2004/07/17 09:44:37 (permalink)
    I shall be off to GRAMPY'S,just to listen to him wax on about pizza is incentive enough but I will talk him out of a few slices just to be sociable.......how long does it take to drive from Tampa?
    #17
    Poverty Pete
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2004/07/17 10:07:57 (permalink)
    Can you still get anchovies on pizza? Where have I been? I haven't seen that in years!
    #18
    Tommy2dogs
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2004/07/17 10:28:08 (permalink)
    Try finding a Pizza worth eating in the Dallas Ft. Worth area.
    After living in Chicago for 40 plus years wher independent Pizza places are everywhere, I moved to DFW area several years ago where Pizza Hut is considered good pizza. On the bight side I have found one Chicago thin crust place in Dallas, Natalie's which is owned by an old Italian family from Kenosha Wisconsin. He makes his sweet sausage and sauce daily. I drive 25 miles just for pizza. For any Chicago transplants in the DFW area , Natale's is located at Coit and Beltline on the NW corner.
    #19
    BT
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2004/07/17 11:55:28 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Poverty Pete

    Can you still get anchovies on pizza? Where have I been? I haven't seen that in years!


    That's my second most common way of getting pizza--after plain cheese. In both cases, though (plain and anchovy) you have to ask and be ready for a look like, "What's wrong with you?" Seems like these days kids (the biggest pizza eaters) like it piled high with "stuff" which, of course, means you can't actually taste the pizza.
    #20
    Grampy
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2004/07/17 12:37:25 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by garykg6

    I shall be off to GRAMPY'S,just to listen to him wax on about pizza is incentive enough but I will talk him out of a few slices just to be sociable.......how long does it take to drive from Tampa?


    21 hours and 36 minutes: http://www.mapquest.com/directions/main.adp?go=1&do=nw&un=m&2tabval=address&cl=EN&ct=NA&1tabval=address&1y=US&1a=&1c=tampa&1s=fl&1z=&1ah=&2y=US&2a=&2c=greenfield&2s=ma&2z=&2ah=&idx=0&id=40f954a1-00343-023a8-cdbcf382&aid=40f954a1-00344-023a8-cdbcf382

    I made three pizzas the other night, with plenty of fresh herbs from the garden. There was quite a bit left over, and I dreamt about having cold pizza for breakfast. Lo and behold, my son went back during the night and finished it all! I might just make grilled pizza tomorrow night, so start driving.
    #21
    Maynerd
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    RE: They Don't Make Pizza Like They Use To 2004/07/17 14:23:35 (permalink)
    Tommy2dogs, have you tried: Campisi's Egyptian Restaurant
    (214) 827-0355 5610 E Mockingbird Ln? Don't let the name fool you it's an Italian place that serves rectangular thin crust pizzas. For some reason I always get the "burger" pizza there. It's really mild Italian sausage I think. Plus you have the added benefit of skulking around one of Jack Ruby's old haunts.
    #22
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