I got out of the 207th St A train Station onto the corner of 207th and Broadway at exactly 6:31, one minute after I was supposed to meet Sweet T. I sat around and read and smoked a cigarette for a while, because no one actually shows up on time, waiting for him, and eventually I had to piss so bad I was like, 'Fuck This,' and walked over to the pizza place I could see from the corner, Pizza Haven. I had been staring at it's crappy old looking sign and tri-color awning salivating for like, half an hour. That is the awning of a proper pizzeria. A bus had been obscuring the front of the place, and I was really excited to see if it looked equally perfect inside. And I couldn't wait to try the damn slice. So you can imagine my surprise when I the idling bus left and I was confronted by this sad reality:
That's right. The place was closed. At 6:50. Which led me to wonder if it's ever open. I kind of hope not because later on when I finally did meet Tooth, he told me he'd eaten there before with Andy, Chris and DPG and it's really nothing special.
So I picked up my giant box of spuriously obtained copies and shlepped north on Broadway two blocks to 211th street, to go try out Grandpas Pizza, the northern-most pizzeria in Manhattan:
The place was decently crowded and that was good, but then again, it's right outside the 211th St. exit for the 207 stop, so who knows if those people are just spillover from our city's fine and moderately priced public transit system. But there were two stoned construction workers on line in front of me and they seemed excited, so I was excited, too. I paid my $2.50, got my slice, put my usual assortment of spices on it (black pepper, red pepper, oregano, garlic powder, all in moderation, and a touch of parmigiana, if available), and walked it over to a table in the ample seating area.
Good looking slice, huh? Well, it was perfect, taste-wise. The dough and crust were incredible, just salty enough, the cheese was gooey but firm, the sauce was perfect-slightly sweet, slightly tangy. And it had that smell. The smell that used to make me and my dad stop and split a slice of pizza walking down the street, despite the fact that we were full of the giant cheeseburgers we'd just consumed moments before, because we couldn't resist the aroma. The problem with this slice was that it was totally unsubstantial. The ratios of everything were perfect in context, but all told, there just wasn't enough of any of it. The dough was so thin it couldn't hold the weight of all that delicious cheese and grease, so it flopped over flaccidly when I folded the slice in half. I ended up accidentally stuffing almost half the slice in my mouth trying to take my first bite, and my mouth wasn't even terribly full of food. I'd have to eat three of these slices to get anywhere near full, and at $2.50 each, that is not suitable for a broke asshole like me.
New York, NY 10034-1651
New York, NY 10034-1651