Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Sally's Apizza: A Family Affair

Ruth,Rick and Bobby Consiglio: Sally's Apizza
Ruth, Rick, Bobby and Flo Consiglio:
The Sally's Apizza Family!
I knew it was going to be a good night of pizza when Jon F. and Sandi showed up with smiles of their faces. They were anxiously anticipating going to Sally’s Apizza for the first time.

We arrived at Wooster Street, 30 minutes before Sally’s opened. We were first in line. Jon and Sandi guarded our spot, while Charlene and I took Kamalei to ride the swings in a nearby park. We came back just in time to see the lights of Sally’s twinkle on.


Stepping into Sally’s Apizza is like going back in time. From the moment you walk in the door you are transported to a different era. The d├ęcor is simple and functional. The booths are cozy and comfortable.

Rick Consiglio, son of Sally (Salvatore), showed us our table and then handed us our menus. He explained there were several pizzas that were not on the menu.

I looked around. Pictures and mementoes lined the walls. Frank Sinatra’s portrait, personally autographed, hung above us. We knew we were in the company of greatness. After all, we were sharing our pizzas with “the Chairman of the Board.”

We opted for a large clam, a large pepper and mozzarella, and a small potato and mozzarella. I also ordered a small pepperoni to go. The Family had instructed us, to not return home, unless we brought back a Sally’s pizza.

Each pizza was unique and memorable. The crust was superb. The potato pizza, which we had sampled on our last visit, was a show stopper. Lightly seasoned with just a hint of rosemary, all of the toppings blended together to create a wonderful taste.

The clam pizza, was extremely tasty and satisfying. The crust was thin but did not bend under the weight of the toppings. These were happy clams. Scrumptious clams.

The pepper and mozzarella was quite tasty and understated. The sweet peppers complimented the amazing crust. We were all totally satisfied. Even Kamalei insisted I take her picture while she was eating a slice of pizza. She wanted to remember the moment.

Sally’s is truly a family operation. Rick works the “front of the house”. While brother Bobby, works “the back of the house”, making pizzas. Sister Ruth, helps out at the register. Flo, Sally’s wife, was all over restaurant, helping wherever she could. She looked years younger than the last time I had seen her. I would love to know her secret. She is the glue that holds the family together.

Sally himself passed on several years ago. He would be quite pleased to see his family continue the legacy. This is truly a family operation. Each member contributing to make sure the operation runs smooth.

Sally’s Apizza is like no other pizzeria on the planet.
I am sure the Consiglio’s would have it no other way.
potato and mozzarella pizza: Sally's Apizza
The potato pizza at Sally's Apizza!
Albert Grande

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Pepe's Pizza: Old Reliable

We just got back from Frank Pepe's Pizzeria Napolentana in New Haven, Connecticut.

Charlene, Kamalei and I had made an appointment to meet college friends David and Judy who had driven down from Shaftsbury, Vermont. As an added bonus Pencil and his wife headed down from Granby, Massachussetts. What a grand reunion!

Since my friends had not experienced Pepe's before, I prepared them for a 1-2 hour wait.

Charlene remarked as we parked the car, that she noticed the line. However, as we got closer to Pepe's, the line had evaporated. We were able to walk right in, with no waiting. Our friends had reserved a table for us in the back.

I was in shock. This was the first time in all of my visits to Pepe's that there was no line. No waiting. No kidding!

(Here is the Pepe's page:'s.htm)

I found my friend Gary Bimonte, grandson of founder Frank Pepe as soon as we walked in. Gary was as gracious as ever, and gave us a warm welcome.

I had just seen the History Channel show, called America Eats: Pizza.
I had featured the show in a recent edition of Pizza News.
(See #4:

I told him I was surprised to find out, according to the show, Frank Pepe was allergic to cheese and tomatoes.

Gary stated he was surprised as well. "That is absolutely not true, Albert" Gary explained. "I don't know where they got their information, but my grandfather was not allergic to tomatoes and cheese."

All I can say is you read it here first!

The pizzas were as usual, fantastic! We started with a Clam Pizza. (Pictured above). This is Pepe's signature dish. Gary tells the story of the Birth of the Clam Pie in the Legends of Pizza CD Volume 1.

The pizza was dripping with fresh clams. The taste was garlicy but not at all spicy. As a matter of fact, I tried to take a picture of a whole clam pizza, but before I could snap the picture, several pieces were missing!

We also ordered a pepperoni and bacon pizza. These toppings also compliment the Pepe's crust as well. The crust at Pepe's is just fantastic.

There was a need to order a vegetarian pizza as some members in our party want to enjoy a healthy life style. We settled for a pepper and onion pizza. I refuse to mention any names.

I also ordered a large pepperoni pizza to go. There were members of the family who had asked us to return home with a take-out pizza from Pepe's.

As usual, Pepe's did not disappoint any of us. Pencil kept saying he could not believe how good the crust was! We were all satisfied as we left. I again thanked Gary for being gracious, as usual.

I think it is almost mandatory, that after having a Pepe's pizza, you need to go next door to Libby's for an Italian ice. We continued the tradition.

I let out my belt a notch and smiled. "Ah, I thought: pizza on earth..."

Albert Grande