January 13, 2005
The Slice Game: On DeMarco's Pizza
Pizza by the slice is the crack cocaine of the food world, cheap, overrated but mad addictive. In its home element, New York City, the cheap is less about the money then about the time, get it fast eat it fast, forget about it, back to work. I was born in raised in money making Manhattan, but I never quite could rep my borough's slices with the gusto. Sure you can grab a decent one at Joe's(Bleeker & 6th), Nino's(St, Marks & A) or Sal and Carmine's (102 & Bway), but out in outer Bs they have a bit more time and time makes a better pizza.
Deep out in Midwood is where the true slice addicts journey, to Di Faro's home of the legendary pizza dealer/maker they call Dom. The junkies swear he cuts the best slice around. Me I've only made the trip once, good shit, but I didn't get hooked. I'd rather get the real quality, by the pie, brick oven style. If I'm going way into Brooklyn for pizza I'll do Tontonno's, but usually its Lombardi's or Grimaldi's or the childhood local, the V&T.
But just as the crack game changed, so to does the slice game. Dom's staying tight in Midwood, but his family is expanding. DeMarco's is their maneuver and it puts them in the heart of it all, Houston and MacDougal, the West Village.
The kinks are still getting worked out, ovens take time to break in and master, but things are looking good. Too good really given how dangerously close they are to my school..
Visit one was a hit or miss. I got the slice, good, but somehow off to. You could feel the quality, but no magic. I wasn't impressed yet somehow as they pulled a square pie out I found myself ordering a slice of that too.
Visit two stepped it up. The pepperoni on the take out pie getting boxed looked supreme but I stayed with the plain slice. Good again, still no magic. And once again as I finished, I craved another. Remember some comment I noticed somewhere about Dom's three (or four really) cheese combo needing to cool to really taste right I ordered an as is slice, no reheating. There was the magic, a slice coming together, damn.
Visit three, time to see if they are a one hit wonder, or the real deal. Once again I grabbed an as is slice and this time walked out the door with it. The best environment for a slice is walking down a busy street anyways. The destination was Joe's reigning king of NY slices. Their famous corner location just got slain, victim of the NY real estate game, but the shop a few doors over cooks the same pizza. No matter, they can't hold fire to DeMarco's, first round knockout, no contest. A good slice sure, but I ate it quick and forgot it. My bike was still locked up outside DeMarco's. Bad positioning, I walked past the door and got sucked right in for the good shit, fast, cheap, addictive..Posted by Abe at January 13, 2005 12:48 AM