I don’t feel shame in admitting that I have pizza at least twice a week, usually one slice for lunch or maybe two for dinner. I’m not adventurous, though; I only have plain or pepperoni. I have been tempted to have the honey-infused pizza made famous by Paulie Gee in Greenpoint, but I’ll get to that later. I’ve increasingly noticed that pizza palaces around town feature old or traditional signs, or perhaps, in fewer cases, new and groundbreaking signs. I keep meaning to do a feature page, but that would entail a whole lot of footwork, so I’ll just show a few here. Most pizza slices in NYC are quite good, especially if they’re fresh. I favor slightly more sauce than cheese and a thin crust, but I’ll take Sicilian, Detroit and “grandma” as well.
Joe’s Pizza on Bedford Avenue in the heart of Williamsburg features the vinyl lettering in the Italian flag colors of red, white and green. I’m unsure if this is a decades-old sign or a retro sign carefully designed to look old.
I can definitely say that Ace’s Pizza on Driggs near Metropolitan features a new, handlettered and etched glass lettered sign since I wandered in and chatted with the proprietor. The pizza on offer here is thick crust Detroit style.
L’Arte Della Pizza, 5th Avenue near Union, stands out because of its red paint job. Red is usually the province of firehouses and some Irish bars, but I hadn’t seen it used to this degree at a pizzeria.
That brings me to Paulie Gee, which opened a pie place a few years ago on Greenpoint Avenue, with a more recent slice joint at Franklin and Noble. I have passed by twice over the past few months ready to sample, but Paulie Gee has an ironclad takeout-only policy and without outside seating I’m out of luck; unlike Tony Manero, I’m not a walk-and-eat guy. I imagine the policy is due to the Covid Pandemic, but similarly-spaced places allow in-store seating. Places that disallow it drive me nuts.
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