Posted By: Pizza Expert on May 19th, 2009
Somehow, Alan Richman is supposed to be an expert on pizza. Seemingly out of nowhere, this GQ writer is somehow a pizza expert that knows the pie so well, he can name the best ones in the country and where they’re made.
He makes two mistakes: 1) He attempts to lay claim to the title of Pizza Expert and King of Pizza when we all know full well who really holds that title. 2) He names pizzas and pizza joints around the country, but fails to include any Florida pizzas on his list.
Both fatal mistakes, as we shall see.
As the real pizza expert who’s spent decades honing my craft as a connoisseur of all things pizza pie, I can tell you that Richman knows zilch. Nadda. Zip. Ze nothing.
What he does know how to do is write an extremely verbose commentary on pizza. I’ll admit that, compared to myself, his writing skills are superb and he definitely knows how to paint a picture of beautiful pizzas and sparkling taste buds. Sadly, while he’s a great painter of words, he’s picking the wrong subjects for his canvas.
Everyone knows that inventing things does not imply being the best at it or perfecting it. Richman was right with his assessment that while the Greeks and/or Italians invented the pizza, it took Americans to make it superb. Face it, in a world dominated by French and Asian cuisine, the pizza is one of the few things Americans can compete with with culinary prowess.
Note that DiGiorno is missing from Richman’s list. Good work on that too, I say that, since they have chosen to not include us as a free pizzatweetup recipient. Too bad he missed so many others that should have been on the list, though.
OK, Mr. Richman, it’s time to go to school. Some of your picks were pretty good and I give you props for boosting some lesser-known joints whose pizza is definitely worth traveling for. All that said, though, class is now in session and the Pizza Expert is going to show you what real pizza is all about.
Here’s Alan’s list of Top 25, for reference. I’ll go into what’s missing and wrong here afterwards:
1. Great Lake (Chicago)
2. Lucali (Brooklyn)
3. Pizzeria Delfina (San Francisco)
4. Pizzeria Bianco (Phoenix)
5. Bob & Timmy’s (Providence, RI)
6. Sally’s Apizza (New Haven, CN)
7. Tomato Pie (Los Angeles)
8. Co. Company (Manhattan)
9. Tocconelli’s (Philadelphia)
10. Totonno’s (Brooklyn)
11. Tarry Lodge (Port Chester, NY)
12. Frank Pepe (New Haven, CT)
13. Luigi’s “the Original” (Harrison Township, MI)
14. Gialina (San Francisco)
15. Buddy’s (Detroit)
16. Antica Pizzeria (Marina Del Ray, CA)
17. A16 (San Francisco)
18. Al Forno (Providence, RI)
19. Galleria Umberto (Boston)
20. Famous Joe’s (Manhattan)
21. Tomatoes Apizza (Farmington Hills, MI)
22. Osteria (Philadelphia)
23. Santarpio’s (Boston)
24. Niki’s (Detroit)
25. Una Pizza Napoletana (Manhattan)
There’s the boy’s list. Now for the one you should be reading if you’re looking for the nation’s top pie tossers and pizza makers. These are ones he missed.
L&B Spumoni Gardens (Brooklyn, NY)
Di Fara’s (Brooklyn, NY)
Rosa’s Pizza (Queens, NY)
Tucci’s PIzza (Boca Raton, FL)
Kitchenetta (Fort Lauderdale, FL)
Spacca Napoli (Chicago)
Ninos’s of Boca (Boca Raton, special pie they make for me)
The Pizza Expert has spoken. Sorry, Richman, real pizza ain’t for kids. Class dismissed. And for the record Sally’s is not better then Frank Pepe’s!