Friday, October 8

The Only Reason to Go to Staten Island on Purpose

My first experience with pizza must have been a good one, because, unlike other foods*, pizza never turned on me. Throughout my childhood, my parents and I ordered a pie every Friday night.

For a long time, we had a Sicilian pie from the Road House, and sometimes we had their bar pies, either a regular cheese or a white pie with broccoli**. However, it seemed that almost weekly the pizza arrived more burnt than the last time. We swore off the Road House’s pizza.

We also ate a lot of Joe and Pat’s. They make this delicious thin crust pie with the tastiest sauce I’ve ever had on a pizza. The drawback: not enough sauce. If I can see the dough from the top of my pizza, I’m not a happy customer.

John’s of Bleeker delivers a standby deliciousness that people consistently rave over, but it still never made it to my Friday table as a regular.

Most recently (before moving to the land of flat, untasty pizza), I had Brother’s at every opportunity. We went to Brother’s before even the Road House, but it used to be that their pies were too doughy and you could get to a slice in the middle and find some uncomfortable mushiness. But now, they make the absolute best Sicilian outside of Sicily. They also make an awesome variation of it, Grandma’s pie. Staten Island is out of the way, but Brother’s is the reason to brave the ferry.

Non-ferry option: Second to Brother’s, the most wonderful place to order a pie (because, disappointingly, they don’t sell slices) is Lombardi’s. They have an amazing brick-oven, fresh mozzarella, basily, rich-and-sweet-and-light at the same time slice with great sauce.

I haven’t wanted a slice this bad in months, and as soon as we find a decent pizza place, I’m reinforcing the Friday night pizza policy.

*I’ve gone stretches of three to eight years without consuming items like hot dogs, potatoes (in any form, after the potato diet), and orange juice, which, occasionally, I still refuse to ingest.

**From The Boy, I’ve learned that, in the rest of the country, pizza is supposed to involve toppings. This is, of course, bizarre to me. So he is still learning to be a connoisseur of cheese pizza, and occasionally I give in to having a topped pizza.


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