If you are even one tenth as much an aficionado of great pizza as I you have no doubt your favorite version of this sublime delicacy. Of course, growing up in New York, I still prefer the version that is produced there. Even a bad New York pizza is better than a great pizza from anywhere else.
Living for many years in Chicago I became acclimated to the deep dish thick crust pizza that is the signature trademark of Uno’s and Due’s – started by an Irishman, Ike Sewell. In fact I make a very good version of it. It’s filling and satisfying and brings back memories of sitting in Ike’s restaurants with good friends and a pitcher of beer.
In Las Vegas there are a number of pizzerias all of which throw New York somewhere in their name to entice the unwary into thinking that they’re about to get the real McCoy. Some of them do a reasonable impersonation of the genuine article. They carry that off almost as successfully as I would doing an impersonation of Mae West.
A new pizzeria, Dom DeMarco’s came to town last fall. It is only about a five mile drive from the house and people talked it up as the authentic thing – coming as they do from Brooklyn. I stopped by one day and picked up a menu. I thought it was pricey but ordered one the next night. I got there ten minutes early as my salivary glands were in overdrive and found that my pizza beat me to the pick up station by some time. There was no heat lamp so I had to reheat it when I got home and there were so few toppings I wondered if I had been given someone else’s order for a plain cheese. All this for $28.00 for a 16” pizza.
I happened to mention this the next morning at the dog park and one of the other morning regulars said he had the same experience – no toppings and overpriced. He also mentioned that when President Obama had been in town on a fundraiser he had ordered seven or eight pizzas for his entourage from Dom DeMarco’s. Had I known that I would have realized that I was going to get gypped and not patronized the place. I won’t make that mistake again.
I did find a pizzeria in North Las Vegas at Uncle Angelo’s Pizza Joint in Jerry’s Nugget Casino which is as close to the real New York experience as I have come. When I ordered one I swooned. Great crust, plentiful fresh toppings, excellent sauce, the right amount of cheese and baked to perfection. A 17” pizza for $17 and that included a free pitcher of beer. I was by myself so I passed on the beer and took home six wonderful slices to enjoy over the next three evenings.
So what is it about New York pizza that makes it different? Everyone tells me that the secret ingredient is the water. New York reportedly has some of the finest water flowing from the tap of any city in the country. I can believe it – and I think the water has properties that go far beyond allowing for the creation of fantastic pizza.
I say this because I read a story the other day that former Rep. Anthony Wiener (D), NY is considering a return to politics, perhaps running for Mayor of New York City. The former Congressional Representative resigned last year because of the flap over his posting semi-clad photos of himself on the internet. He is apparently sitting on $4.5 million in campaign contributions which could be used to facilitate that bid.
Apparently the former congressman’s incipient career as a model for men’s undergarments didn’t work out.
I have a theory that New York City water increases libido and diminishes any sense of propriety. It is possible that this may only affect politicians. I have a call in to former Governor Eliot Spitzer to see if I can get some confirmation of this. I will keep you posted as developments warrant.
Until then, I would suggest that politicians who either live in or are visiting the Big Apple take caution and make sure that they only consume water that has been bottled elsewhere.
There’s something in the water.