So watching Huell Howser this week it was an episode (probably from 10 years ago) and he’s visiting Village Pizza on Larchmont.
They put the pizza on a screen and the owner who also is a pizza chef, told Huell that because they use flour on the board (he said that was not traditional thing to do (?) ) they put the pizza on the screen to keep the flour from burning on the oven.
Margheritas are traditionally a Neapolitan style pie. While I love this style its not for everyone. It is usually served with a knife and fork to eat it. From the excellent char on the bottom crust it definitely looks like your pizza was cooked enough. Neapolitan pizza is cooked at a temperature range from 840F to 900F for around 90 seconds. American pizza styles, New York or Neo-Neapolitan, are cooked at between 550F and 640F for between four and six minutes.
American pizza dough has a higher hydration point so as to cook longer, and is made from bread flour with more gluten than Caputo 00. Thus it has a crisper crust.
I hope you don’t think I am being pedantic here, but I love pizza and have studied it. I often make pizza at home and thus I rarely if ever order it when going out so I cannot comment on any of the places mentioned in this thread.
Just wanted to possibly shed some light on your limp crust dilemma.
Edited to add pics of NY style vs Neapolitan:
I felt like that Village Pizzeria episode was from 15-20 years ago. I was watching that episode as well. The owner is from Whitestone, right by where I grew up. Nice guy. Village was the best pizza when I first moved here in 2000. Haven’t been back in over a decade though.
BTW Superfine is most definitely NOT neoplolitan style pizza. Only NY style joints sell pizza by the slice. I’ve been to Superfine a bunch of times and like @Chowseeker1999 never had an issue with limp crust.
the 2 times I had Village Pizza the crust was reminiscent of a sponge I once tried to eat when I was 7…im not sure what the Village pizza “chef” meant as it seems tossing a little flour on the surface before spreading the dough seems quite common…
During our previous visit to Apollonia’s, we came to the same conclusion that Nemroz did with the bad QPR: Each Detroit-style square slice runs you between $7 - $8 (+ tax & tip). But we wanted to give them another try.
Apollonia’s features the signature Cheese “lacing” on the edges of their Detroit-style Pizza. Taking a bite:
There’s a lot of bread, the ratio feels off, but overall, the flavor is just OK. Taken as a Pepperoni Pizza, there are numerous other places we’d rather eat, the Pepperoni here is salty, standard, the Tomato Sauce is a bit too acidic and the overall taste is fine.
We’re not fans of Truffle Oil, but this had positive reviews on FTC so we had to give it a shot. The overall taste is much better than their Pepperoni, the Ricotta adds a nice creaminess and mellows out each bite, the Truffle Oil adds a certain aroma, but it might’ve been just fine with good quality Mushrooms, and I liked the slight bitterness from the Arugula. Definitely their best flavor there that we’ve tried so far.
However, for $8 (+tax & tip) for 1 slice, it feels like the QPR isn’t too ideal.
5176 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Tel: (323) 937-2823
Opened inside the SteelCraft Long Beach Food Hall (all outdoor seating), we had heard that DeSano opened up a branch from FTC years ago, but never made it down. As part of our Curry Journey, we stumbled upon DeSano’s 2nd branch and did an impromptu bang x bang.
First, it should be noted, this DeSano branch is tiny compared to the OG location. There are no giant wood-burning ovens (the beautiful, mammoth brick ovens they brought over from Italy at their original location). They have a tiny wood-burning oven (like something you have in your backyard) to make it work / fit in this Food Hall location.
In addition, the menu is different at this 2nd branch: There are fewer Pizzas and no Calzones. Even each Pizza entry had a few less ingredients compared to the original location.
San Gennaro Pizza (San Marzano Tomato Sauce, Sausage, Peppadew, Caramelized Onions, Garlic, Buffalo Mozzarella):
The crust is soft with a touch of crispness on the edges, it looks a little pale compared to the OG DeSano’s.
However the flavor of the San Gennaro is quite good. Not as good as the original DeSano, but the San Marzano Tomato Sauce tastes familiar and close to the original, the Sausage, Peppadew Pickled Peppers (is that a tongue twister?), Caramelized Onions, Garlic is just a great flavor combination and it shines here.
This came out quite nice. The crust was crispy-crunchy (crispier than their freshly made Pies), the Pepperoni turned into slight “cups” and the flavor was delicious.
This might’ve been the best Frozen Pepperoni Pizza we’ve made at home since I can remember.
We’re still longing for the day when La Morra Pizzeria returns. They are too good not to return, but we’re pulling for them to survive the pandemic. In the meantime, try some of Chef Swemle’s Frozen Pizzas To Go. They reheat fantastic at home for a nice treat if you want some Pizza and didn’t feel like driving out.
A new Pizzeria opened up by co-owners Jonathan Strader and Jack Leahy, they both met while working at Hatchet Hall. Chef Leahy became Chef de Cuisine at Hatchet Hall and then moved on to be Executive Chef at L&E Oyster Bar.
First, visually it looks gorgeous! There are real Pepperoni “Grease Chalices” as @Ns1 has been naming them. The staff confirms that Little Coyote is making a New York Style Pizza, and they cold ferment the dough.
Taking a bite…
Sturdy-ish Pizza crust (not soupy). The Tomato Sauce is balanced, but a touch on the acidic side. The Pepperoni are salty though. They are the saltiest Pepperoni of all the top contenders in the city (as a point of comparison), far saltier than Superfine, saltier than Pizza Wagon of Brooklyn, saltier than Steel Pan, La Morra Pizzeria and many other places.
But despite that, it’s quite tasty. The Pizza crust is crunchy on the outside (from the Olive Oil drizzle which seems to really toast up the outer crust). As a result this isn’t really a “foldable” Pizza (is that a requirement for NY Style? @Gr8pimpin@lapizzamaven@Ns1@PorkyBelly and others.)
Papa Joe Pizza (Italian Sausage, Mushrooms, Mozzarella, Crushed Tomato):
The Papa Joe Pizza is delicious! Their Italian Sausage and Mushrooms are a classic combination, and the Italian Sausage is much less salty than the Pepperoni. The Mushrooms add a nice earthiness and that delicious savoriness that only Mushrooms can impart. These work better with the Tomato Sauce and Mozzarella.
Little Coyote offers Slices only from 12:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. (FYI).
We wanted to try some Slices, to see how the Slice compared to the Whole (as sometimes a Slice turns out better (ala Superfine)). For FTC “research” for everyone.
The Slice of reheated Pepperoni Pizza was exactly the same as the Whole Pie, except it was a bit more foldable(!). The crust was still quite crispy-crunchy, but the inside was able to bend more. Tasty, but greasy, and saltier than other top contenders.
The White Pie (Slice) (Spinach, Ricotta, Garlic, Onion, Mozzarella, Calabrian Chili, White Sauce):
This was quite tasty! I loved the combination of Spinach, Ricotta, Garlic and Onions. The Calabrian Chilies were non-existent (no spiciness), but otherwise, this was a lighter, more balanced flavor combination and worked well with their crispy-crunchy New York Style Pizza crust. (@hanhgry@TheCookie@PorkyBelly and others.)
The Classic Italian Sandwich (Mortadella, Capicolla, Soppressata, Provolone & The Work):
Visually beautiful, but one look at the cross-section and we were worried that this might turn out like the disastrous Padrino Sandwich at Pizzana.
Thankfully it was better: First, like the Padrino, there is just too much of everything. At first, it seems strange that one would complain about generous fillings, but for a great Italian Sandwich, too much is not a good thing.
There is just too much Mortadella, Capicolla, and Soppressata, but the biggest offender is you get like 7 (SEVEN) slices worth of thickness of Provolone Cheese (so across a whole sandwich probably 14 normal slices?). It just overwhelms the taste and flavor.
Gjusta’s legendary Italian Sandwich is much more balanced, and Wax Paper’s Larry Mantle is also more balanced and tastier.
This isn’t bad, and certainly a quality Italian Sandwich, but just too much a study of excess.
The first bite is a breakthrough of lightly crusty Bread from Little Brothers Bakery (Gardena), you get some creamy, luscious melted Mozzarella and their Crushed Tomato Sauce, but then you get a bite of their Housemade 50/50 Beef & Pork Meatballs.
Moist, tender, balanced, not overly salty, really meaty and the total combination is outstanding!
The Queen Margherita with Sausage half was also the same. Way too much Tomato Sauce and totally soupy and the toppings just were swimming in liquid.
It was so bad, we returned to the counter, asked the server making the Pizza if this was the “standard” that the Pizzas come out as now. She said, “Yes.” We explained the situation, showed how ridiculously gloppy the Pizza was and she responded with, “I can try making one with less sauce?”
We let them try again (remade Pizza with Less Sauce):
Tasty. This was just the same as our 1st visit, very consistent. As before, the Pepperoni Slice was crispy-crunchy on the outside, not really foldable without breaking / snapping the hard crust in half (the rest of the Pie inside was softer and foldable).
The Pepperoni as before were nicely crisped up and greasy, but still the same saltiness. It’s not “bad” at all, but definitely way saltier than other top places.
Still a very good slice, even with the sodium problem.
Wanting to make sure it wasn’t a fluke, we ordered their Meatball Sandwich again. And just like before:
Tender, almost fluffy, moist Housemade Meatballs with 50/50 Beef & Pork, nicely seasoned, zesty, meaty, but not overly salty!
On a personal level, I like Chef Zoe Nathan’s Turkey Meatball Sandwich at Huckleberry Cafe just a touch more (different take on a Meatball Sandwich), but Little Coyote’s is probably our new favorite Classic Meatball Sandwich in L.A. right now. Do not miss this!
On the full Pie, the Pepperoni on this 2nd visit is still like before: A very solid Pepperoni Pizza, good “Grease Chalices”, but it’s very greasy and quite salty. I liked the crisped up cups, the melted Mozzarella was decent quality, but the Tomato Sauce was a touch too acidic still for us. Good, but Superfine’s OG version was much better, and Pizza Wagon’s Tomato Sauce is also more enjoyable.
But besides the sodium issue (saltiest Pepperoni), it’s really greasy. As @A5KOBE pointed out, it’s dripping grease! (See pic above.)
It wasn’t the heart attack inducing grease-fest of Johnny’s West Adams’ excessive Pastrami Sandwich, but it was close. There was so much Pepperoni Grease that it totally saturated the bottom of the Pizza Box (we had to ask for a new one).
The crispy-crunchy crust (a bit too crunchy) works beautifully with the fragrant Mushrooms, Red Onions, Roasted Red Peppers, a bit of briny saline pop from the Olives and melty Mozzarella and the Tomato Sauce. It brought everything together in balance.
Little Coyote is a totally casual neighborhood Pizza joint, that happens to be making some very good quality Pies. They claim to be a New York Style, but I’ll leave that up to our FTC NY Pizza experts to judge. One thing we didn’t like was that the outer crust was so crunchy-toasted that it cut the roof of our mouths(!) (something @paranoidgarliclover mentioned with some Banh Mi Baguettes).
Their Pepperoni is too salty and one note and too greasy, the Red Sauce is a touch too acidic, but these are minor points that I’m bringing up as a point of finer comparison to the best in L.A.: As it is, Little Coyote’s Pepperoni Pizza is very good, probably Top 5 in L.A., even with the Salt issues.
But their Papa Joe (Italian Sausage, Mushrooms), the White Pie (Spinach, Ricotta, Garlic, Onion, Mozzarella), are even better and their Veggie Supremo Pizza is fantastic, probably our favorite Pizza on the menu and a real star!
Their Pepperoni isn’t worth a drive across town for, but I’d drive across town to order their Meatball Sandwich (featuring Housemade 50/50 Beef & Pork Meatballs), which is possibly the best Classic Meatball Sandwich in L.A. right now.
Our last visit was so horrendous, we had to make sure this was really a problem. So off we went for another revisit, back-to-back with Little Coyote’s 2nd visit.
Walking up to the counter, we made sure the new Pizza maker from yesterday wasn’t working today. Instead, it was yet another new Pizza maker.
Chatting with the young fellow (who looked like he was in high school), he confirmed that Superfine “lost a bunch of people. We’ve had all new people start.”
Chatting with the security guard for the parking lot area, she confirmed she’s been working here and eating at Superfine for years (and we recognized her). When she asked how our Pizza was (awful), she nodded and simply said, “It’s not the same anymore.”
When we asked what happened to the OG Pizzaiolos, she said they left, “Found better jobs.”
There was zero crispiness, it was all soft and bad.
To note, the Tomato Sauce was still as tasty as before (Chef-Owner Steve Samson (Rossoblu)) probably made sure the recipe was still being followed, so you get a balanced, savory, delicious Tomato Sauce that is crave-worthy, but everything else about the Pizza is just bad.
I don’t want to see anyone fail during a pandemic, but to save our FTC’ers money and to report what’s happening:
Superfine Pizza has lost their OG Pizzaiolos, and is in major DOWNHILL alert! Avoid at all costs.
(Full Caveat: Superfine was my favorite Pepperoni Pizza in L.A. prior to this disaster of them losing their staff. I don’t say the above lightly.)
Now I really need to try Little Coyote! @Chowseeker1999 I didn’t really enjoy my pizza at Superfine that much, either. The crust on mine was also floppy. I did think that the pepperoni was delicious.
I had tried Pizza Wagon a few days before, and I loved that much more. The crust was lovely, chewy and crisp. There may have been a tad more sauce than I personally preferred, but it was good. The pepperoni I had was tasty, but not as good as Superfine’s.
Thanks. I think you probably got their new hired staff. Superfine OG was amazing! Crisped, balanced, so delicious. I feel terrible for all our FTC’ers who just suffered this mediocre version and for the loss of a great Pizzeria.