Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Brooklyn Pizza Tour

"Start spreading the news,
I'm leaving today.
I want to be part of it, New York, New York..."

Ok so, I'm not leaving today, but I am leaving soon. I'm heading to the East Coast for a Pizza Tour. I'll be having some "abeets" at my favorite New Haven places: Pepe's, Sally's and Modern.

I'm also going to New York to sample some of the best pizza on the planet.

(OK, if you listen to Adam Kuban and Ed Levine of Slice, New York has the Best Pizza in the World!)

All I can say is that I'll have to judge for myself.

I've already made reservations for The Brooklyn Pizza Tour.

Tony Miua is the tour guide and I had the opprtunity to interview him.

Albert: Can you tell me how you came up with idea for the Brooklyn Pizza Tour? Had you thought about it for a long time? Was it a secret dream?

Tony: I've been an avid traveler over the years and whenever I went abroad I would always meet locals who were nice enough to show me around. I would reciprocate when they visited NYC and would show them Brooklyn from a native's point of view. I would drive them around and show them Brooklyn landmarks, points of interest, famous movie locations and take them for some of Brooklyn's amazing pizza.

To many of us, Brooklyn is synonymous with pizza. Then about 2 years ago I took a group of friends from Manhattan, who are pizza fanatics, on a personal pizza tour. There were 3 cars with 10 of us and we did a similar type of thing...a few pizzerias interspersed with Brooklyn highlights.

Word got out and the next time we tried to do it we had as many as 25-30 wanting to do it so I thought to myself "Hey, maybe New Yorkers and tourists alike might be interested in something like this?"

Albert: I am interested in the choice of pizzerias. Now you're from New York. Why Brooklyn? You choose two pizzerias, in a place where there are dozens and dozens of great pizza places.

Tony: True, there are dozens of fantastic pizzerias around Brooklyn. That's the great thing about the borough. Brooklynites are a choosey bunch when it comes to pizza. You don't stay in business for 30, 40 or 50 years serving lousy pizza.

The great thing about Brooklyn is that you can walk into so many old-school pizzerias and get a great slice. The reason I chose the two, is because they're the best at what they do.

Grimaldi's, whose lineage goes all the way back to the very first pizzeria that opened in New York City in 1905, serves up amazing Neapolitan pizza the likes of which I've only had in Naples.

The other pizzeria, L&B Spumoni Gardens, serves up the best Sicilian anywhere around. It recently came in first place in the borough-wide pizza contest held by the New York Daily News. Then again you could have known this by asking anyone who's grown up with the stuff.

Well thanks Tony. I can't wait to get my hands on some real New York Pies.

You can see a great video of The Famous Brooklyn Pizza tour, right, here.

I can't wait! In the meantime, check out Ed Levine's: A Slice of Heaven. This is an incredible pizza resource from the pizza expert. Levine ate 10,000 slices in preparation for this book!

The Pizza Therapy Pizza Book: Unlock the Secret of Making Simple, Easy Pizza

Hey, I better check my reservations. I'll see you in Brooklyn.

pizza on earth and in New York,
Albert Grande
Somewhere in The Pizza Therapy Universe


akuban said...

When you comin' here, Albert? I'd love to eat pizza with you.

Tony's tour is a lot of fun. I bet it's gotten even better since the time I went on it, now that he's had a couple years to get his act down.

You should also see if you can get in on one of Scott Wiener's New York Pizza Tours. He avoids the places Tony goes to out of respect for Tony's tour, so you could get a totally different experience on that one, too!

JAB said...

I definitely recommend Scott's Pizza Tours, it is a lot of fun and you get a whole history lesson about pizza as well. Plus you go to the best places all over the 5 boroughs. Not just brooklyn.
I've been and I recommend.