19 Old Fulton St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Pizza is to New York, as fake body parts are to LA. New York just does pizza well. Some say it is the water, some people claim the cheese is the key, and still others say the cooking process makes all the difference. Whatever the reason for this, one place kept coming up when I was doing research on where to get a great pizza in the city, Grimaldi's.
Grimaldi's, located right under the Brooklyn Bridge, has become the favorite pizza of countless celebrities, politicians and foodies from around the world. The line at Grimaldi's is legendary. People have waited hours to get a seat inside the bustling restaurant. Once inside you are squeezed into your table, almost elbow to elbow with your neighbor. The menu here is not too complex. They have one appetizer, (antipasto), calzones, and of course the reason we are here, pizza.
The pizza here is cooked in coal ovens. Coal is said to make the pizza's come out with a smoky flavor and a crispness that is not possible when cooking with gas or wood ovens. Coal ovens have been banned from newer restaurants, so there are only a handful of restaurants that still have them. Let's see if coal makes a big difference.
We opted to get the large pizza with pepperoni and sausage. After the first bite I noticed the difference right away, the cheese was fresh mozzarella. Not the rubbery stuff that you get at Pizza Hut, but the real thing. Very milky, and it seemed to enhance the slice instead of over-powering my taste buds. The pepperoni was much better here as well. Peppered better than any pepperoni I have ever had. The sauce on this pizza was not over done either. Sparsely splashed over the pizza to compliment the basil leaves. The crust was good as well. Nice crispness to it, but soft on the inside. Between the four of us, there were no pieces of crust left on any of our plates. Not sure that I have ever seen that happen before with four people.
One last picture to show you the lack of grease left on the pan. The result of this was a light tasting pizza that was full of flavor. The large was eight slices, and I could have probably eaten one whole large pizza by myself. I really savored my two slices, and was a little sad when they were gone.
Grimaldi's was all it was cracked up to be. Some may scoff at the lack of variety on the menu, but it is better to do one thing exceptionally well, than doing a lot of thing marginally well. The service here was fair, for how busy they were, but they have to be used to the crowds by now. Another criticism I have heard about this place was the price of the pizza. The large pizza has a base price of $14, and an additional price of $2 for each topping that you choose. I did not find this to be outrageous, but it could add up quick if you wanted a pizza with everything. Luckily, I like my pizzas more on the simpler side. In my opinion Grimaldi's deserves all the press and praise it receives.
Out of five Christmas stockings, (because Grimaldi's could use all the coal that has been found in my stocking to make pizzas for a year!), five being best to zero being best, Grimaldi's gets 4 solid Christmas stockings.
For more information on Grimaldi's, click here: http://www.grimaldis.com/index.html