Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Famous Ray's: "Not a Famous Original Ray's, nor the original Ray's, but perhaps the original Famous Ray's?"

I will head into the city one day this week and re-photograph some of these places!
In keeping with my opinion of Famous Original Ray's pizza, the original Famous Ray's totally blows chunks. This place does look pretty cool, though! There are these great checkered tiles along the counter and these pretty cool tables for standing at,  and the place is really spacious and quiet and a little unsettling in a pretty cool way. Too bad the pizza sucks!

This slice had too much cheese and was super nasty. Like it was totally disgusting. Ugh. The slice was really thick, and not crunchy at all. It wasn't soggy, but it was floppy. I kind of felt like I was eating a yoga mat. Yusuke said, "I can't taste sauce so much," and I have to agree with him, so I can't comment on how the sauce is. Mostly this slice is just a disappointing bummer, although Yusuke said, "this slice like Cheesy Bread, and I like cheesy stuff, so it's good." I have to disagree with him that there is anything redeemable about this slice, but who cares. If you like things that are shitty, maybe you will like this slice.


Famous Ray's Pizza - $2.75
465 Ave of the Americas (at 11th)
New York, NY 10014

Monday, November 29, 2010

99¢ Fresh Pizza: "Best dollar slice so far!"

This 99¢ Fresh Pizza location on Avenue of the Americas is the best dollar slice of pizza I've had so far. Hands down. Me and Yusuke both agreed that it was leagues better than Cafe Amore. And in my very informed opinion, it's the highest quality dollar slice I have eaten in the past 15 and a half months.

Even though it looks nearly identical to almost every other 99¢ Fresh slice, this one was GOOD! Objectively, not just on the Dollar Scale! Decent cheese, non-weird, even good sauce, nice and greasy, this slice had it all. Or, almost had it all, as the dough left something to be desired in a big way. But even though the dough was 'meh,' the crust was 'yeah!,' which is to say, it was excitingly good. Yusuke said this slice tasted exactly like the Sbarro in Tokyo, which is new, and is apparently the best pizza place in that city. I am not usually a proponent of Sbarro, but I will say that in a city that only has chain pizza shops, the chain that comes from New York better be the best one, although I have a personal affinity for Famous Famiglia over Sbarro. Whatever, blah blah blah yakkety yak.


Dollar Scale:

99¢ Fresh Pizza - $1.00
368 Ave of the Americas (8th & Waverly)
New York, NY 10014

Thursday, November 25, 2010


When I went into Cafe Amore I thought it was totally empty. That's because I didn't see the huge Daedalian labyrinth in the back in which me and Yusuke discovered a number of poor lost souls clutching their trays and trembling. I went up to the counter and asked them to charge me for a slice and a coke, but to put the coke into the cup I already had. The lady was like, "we don't do refills."
And so I was all, "No, I'll pay for it, I just don't want to waste another cup."
And she was like, "well aren't you a Good Samaritan?" in this total 'I'm so over it' voice.
Then this West Village Gremlin came in, rubbing his dirty paws together and hissing like Gollum, "buy me a slice, mister? Can you buy me a slice mister? I'm really hungry mister."
And I was like "And gimme a slice for this guy." And the lady behind the counter gave me such a high brow and was like, "another good deed from Mother Theresa."
And buying the Gremlin a pizza ended up being a fortuitous decision because he showed us how to escape the labyrinth! I think that's why it irritated the lady behind the counter, because they find the people stuck in the maze and then work them to death and then after they die they make pepperonis out of them. Real talk.

This slice totally sucked. It was cooked enough for the crust to be crunchy, but the cheese was awful and so was the sauce. Yusuke said, "it's like... the cheese... it's like a... it's not like cheese. The texture is different. I ate frozen pizza in Austin long time ago, this is like that. It tastes like pizza from other town, other state, but not like New York." Basically this slice was nasty. The cheese was the cheapest crap imaginable and didn't melt all the way, probably because it is made from ground up human bones or whatever. The sauce was saccharine sweet and grotesque. The crust was fine but considering the rest of the slice, who really cares if the crust was okay? To quote my man Corey Eastwood, this is nihilist food.


Cafe Amore - $2.75
319 Ave of the Americas (Carmine & W 4th)
New York, NY 10014

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Phil's Pizza: "Joe's pizza, then Phil's pizza, next will be Eliza's pizza and then Alex's pizza..."

Phil's Pizza is awesome! When we walked in, the tv was playing some totally scandalous shit on Judge Judy and there was this guy in a union jacket yapping away at the pizzaman all, "and so I says to her, 'dat's right I put the chain on the door.' Dat ain't my kid walking around smokin joints in the hallways keepin' me up at night. Let him keep YOU up at night foronceinyagoddamnlife...'" And it looked like a shithole in the best way but smelled SO GOOD.

Phil's Pizza is totally comparable to Famous Joe's in style. It is super thin crust, to the point that it can't bear it's own weight and flops around, but it is totally delicious anyway. The sauce here was slightly sweet in a way that Yusuke and me didn't really like, but it wasn't too sweet, and the slice was otherwise pretty bangin'. Great quality cheese and great dough. This slice is on the less saucy side of the perfect ratio spectrum, but still totally great! The crust was a little bit brittle, if it had been cooked a moment longer it would've been bad, but as it was it, tasted perfect. Yusuke said this place had "good atmosphere, very good atmosphere."


Phil's Pizza - $2.50
226 Varick St (Carmine & Downing)
New York, NY 10014

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Famous Joe's Pizza: "You all know this place is good already."

Yesterday I went pizza eating with famous Tokyo punk Yusuke Okada. I have known Yusuke for a few years now, and it seems like everyone else knows him too. No matter where I go or who I talk to, if I am amongst punks, someone has had the pleasure of his company, whether it was hosting him or his band in the States or hanging out with him in Japan on tour or traveling. Yusuke is a totally rad man, and I have been talking about him incessantly to my girlfriend since he got into town. What a guy!

The clerk at the store where he bought his hat told Yusuke, "this hat is for old women or confident men."

Our first stop was Famous Joe's Pizza, which is different from other pizzerias with the word "Famous" in the name because, 1. Famous Joe's is actually famous, and 2. they serve a great slice.

Sorry this photo is so weird! I shattered the screen on my future phone and can't really see what any of the pictures I take look like anymore!

This slice is totally, solidly awesome. It is on the saucier side of perfect ratios, which is still absolutely phenomenal. The cheese is DELICIOUS and fresh, the sauce is tangy and flavorful, and the dough tastes phenomenal. The slice is a little small for $2.75, though. And it is a bit floppy, but believe it or not, it is floppy without being soggy, and it has this certain fresh chewiness that I find totally appealing. The crust tastes like fresh sourdough bread from the bakery and has enough salt and is the perfect texture, even if the "floor" of the slice flopped around too much. All in all, I wish it was a bit bigger, but this is a great slice. And that shouldn't be news to anyone, Joe's has been serving great pizza forever.


Famous Joe's Pizza - $2.75
7 Carmine St (Bleeker & Ave of the Americas)
New York, NY 10014