When was the last time you had a classic New York slice?
Nowadays, it’s getting harder to find the city’s iconic slice. Neighborhood pizza parlors have been driven out of business by dollar slice places on one hand, and by effete, pinkie-in-the-air pie parlors on the other, where a pizza scarcely larger than two slices is pushing $20, pricewise. And remember, you don’t pay tax and tip in one of the city’s old-fashioned pizzerias, either.
How long can neighborhood pizza parlors persist?
Do you recall what the retro-NYC slice tasted like? The sauce was a little on the sweet side, the cheese a little on the sour side – possibly because it was mob cheese made to inferior specifications. No matter, the two came together on an oft-perfect crust, or at least one you were accustomed to and had come to crave.
Well, I think I found the perfect antique slice, way down near land’s end in Bay Ridge in the shadow of the Verrazano Narrows Bridge. In Saturday Night Fever country.
A place called Espresso Pizza (even though they sell no espresso) offers the most perfect slice for $2.25. You can buy it at a front window or step inside to munch. A couple of old codgers are sitting around inside kibitzing, and the pizzaiolo looks like he’s been woikin’ there a good long time. Yay, Bay Ridge!
The slice is perfect unto itself, and a friend and I shared one on the way to pick mulberries. It took us back quite a few years.
9403 Fifth Avenue
Bay Ridge, Brooklyn