Originally posted by joerogo roossy90
, Thats Old Forge, NY. The reference here is for Old Forge, Pa. Scorereader
, Since you
are obviously an expert on Italian food and Chipotle's. I would also like to have some details. To me it sounds like you just mouthing off AGAIN.
And maybe some polling data from New York and Boston Italians, since you are neither.
well, Joe. I am
from Syracuse. Which is a hotbed of good down-home Italian food. While not of Italian descent myself. My best friend, who lived two doors down from me, is 100% Italian. I grew up as member of her family. And was regularly invited to family meals at Nana and Nano's house, columbus day dinners, umpteen Order of Sons of Italy events, I pulled a replica of the Santa Maria down North Salina Street for the annual Columbus Day Parade for several years, I performed at the Pepsi International Pavillion at the NYS Fair as part of the Syracuse Italian-American Heritage Center singing Italian arias and dancing Italian folk dances. And for everything, there was always food -from Northern Italy to Sicily not to mention Venetian Hour. I think I've learned enough about Italian food over the course of life to be able to judge an Italian restuarant's food.
Everytime I stopped for Italian food or pizza off of I-81 in PA, it was not desirable. Most of those times were before I joined roadfood and hence started keeping record of place I ate. So, I don't recall the names of individual places. Suffice to say, that during many years travelling through that area, I found other food to be better than the Italian offerings.
I do not believe I have tried the places Mosca mentioned. However, we're talking roadfood here. I made the statement that the only city to stop in on I-81 for Italian is Syracuse. Why? Because you'd be hard pressed to find a crappy italian restaurant in that city. But, it's not hard to do in any of those towns in NE PA and, heck, all the way to TN. In those place, you have to hunt for the good Italian food.
Since we're talking roadfood, I'm saying, that I-81 through PA is not known for it's great Italian food.
I can tell you a about a few decent pizza places in DC that stand out. They are actually, quite good. But, I wouldn't tell a New Yorker to hit DC for the pizza, based on those few places. Because, odds, are, when they're passing by DC at 65 MPH, they are unlikely to stumble on the good pizza.
The worst offender is that stuff they call pizza in Scranton/Moosic/W-B area. I stopped at a place in Moosic, I believe, that was a pizza place that was "famous" or something to that effect. It was a square of thick tasteless dough (they may have called it Sicilian style), with a sauce that was nearly plain tomato paste, with a cheese on top that had a nice look to it (creamy looking like provolone and mozzarella) but ultimately had a very flat taste - even though the texture was great. Thankfully, I had two slices, one with pepperoni, so, for the second slice, I just ate the cheese and pepperoni with a bit of the tomato paste attached.
I had similar experience at pizza places with Italian names, close to I-81 in Scranton and W-B.
On one trip to Syracuse, we actually stopped in Hazelton for a sit down dinner at an Italian restaurant in Hazleton, I can't recall the name, but it was someone's name, and started with an "A." Anyway, ho hum. The place had a sort of authentic feel, but the food wasn't impressive. The meats on the antipasto were so-so, the pasta itself was good, but the sauces again were nothin to write home about. When I asked my wife her opinion, she said, it was "ok." Which is her way of saying, "it was food." We agreed, it was ok and we had a nice time, but not worth stopping on subsequent trips.
I have other experiences that were similar over the years that had similar results.
So, my point, to weary travellers passing through PA on I-81, don't stop for Italian or Pizza, because you are likely to be disappointed. In Syracuse (another town located on I-81), you can pull into any mom and pop Italian restuarant and it may not be blow your mind great, but you won't walk out saying, "ya know, that wasn't worth the stop."
and so, that's my point. That's not to say that a few stand outs could exist, but, unless one is staying overnight where one has time to find the few needles in the haystack, it's not worth the time if one is merely passing through.
Look, as I said, I can recommend pizza in DC, which is fine if DC is your destination and you have time to get to those few places, but if you're just passing by, I wouldn't recommend it.
Believe it or not, there's a really nice Thai place in Syracuse, but if someone was passing through Syracuse, I wouldn't send them on a hunt to find it.
and, Joe, for the record, I don't "mouth off." I simply write, based on my travels, experiences and findings. As you do. So don't make it personal.