On Friday my friend James met me at my apartment early in the afternoon to head up to Harlem and help me finish eating all the slices of pizza available above 125th st. In preparation for a full day of pizza eating, neither of us had eaten breakfast. As we rode the subway up to 137th and Broadway, we were both pretty loopy, getting hungrier and hungrier. We got out of the train and walked over to Amsterdam, both of us dying for a slice when we saw La Palma Restaurant & Pizzeria.
Pretty much without fail, pizzerias that serve anything besides pizza, pasta, heros and calzones have shitty pizza. If you can get tacos, pupusas, borscht, fried chicken, or sushi in the same place as a slice of pizza, your slice will probably blow, (although funnily enough, availability of Tower Isle beef patties or Gabila knishes is oftentimes a sign to the contrary). Regarding this rule, La Palma as no exception.
Even though I had a terrible feeling when I looked at the pizza behind the counter and saw the EXTENSIVE menu of non-pizzeria-related foods, I got my slice anyway, because I am a man on a mission, like Rambo. And like Rambo, I know that sometimes you have to overcome an obstacle to achieve a goal. So I paid my $2.00 and was handed this piece of crap:
The top of the slice looks like Freddy Krueger's face, a sign that it had been sitting out all day, not being sold, because no one wants it. If it were a puppy or an orphan you might feel bad for it and learn to love it for all it's foibles, but when it comes to pizza, popularity is actually really important.
The cheese on this slice tasted like chemicals. The sauce tasted like canned pureed tomatoes with nothing added. The dough tasted like pillsbury and was way too dense because no one gave it time to rise. The crust was totally undercooked and sucked.
However, this place isn't all bad. They have $0.75 hotdogs, and you can get two slices and a fountain soda for $4.00. Granted it's two shitty slices, but that's still a deal.
As we were walking to the next pizzeria, I said to James, "I almost feel less satisfied than I was before I ate anything."
And he was all, "Yeah, man. The gnawing pangs of hunger in my guts were totally preferable to whatever's going on in there now... Hey, I was wondering, could you tell before we got there that it was gonna be mediocre because it said Restaurant and Pizzeria?"
"Well," I mused, "there is usually a correlation, although Pizzeria Restaurants tend to be awesome. But yeah, most times when a place serves non-pizzeria food as well as pizza, the pizza stinks."
"Right," he nodded in agreement, "like how you don't go to a tattoo shop that sells bongs."
La Palma Restaurant & Pizzeria