Posted By: Pizzaholic DC on June 12th, 2012
When most people have a “deep thought”, they’re usually pondering the mysteries of the universe. When I have a “deep thought”, it’s more likely to be about which “deep” dish pizza is the best in the universe. (Or at least locally since I’m too poor to fly to Chicago for dinner).
Since 1977 one of the best thick crusted pizzas in the DC area has been found at Geppetto Restaurant at the Wildwood Shopping Center in Bethesda, MD. Named after Pinocchio’s maker, you’ll find puppet references at the entrance next to a picture of President Clinton eating one of their pies. It’s hard to believe they’ve been pumping out these tasty Sicilian pies since the days when I learned to spell “p.i.z.z.a.” while singing the letters along with Sesame Street.
Over the years, Geppetto’s Pizza has expanded their menu to include not only thick pies but Neopolitan and thin crusted ones as well as seafood and pasta. These items are nice but the thick crusted and white pizzas are what keep people coming back.
Each thick crusted Sicilian pie begins with mozzarella and provolone cheeses over a spicy thick tomato sauce. Unlike DC deep dish newcomer, “District of Pi”, the crust at Geppetto Restaurant has a doughy bottom layer that absorbs the topping flavors before getting to the crispy outer layer. This sauce is also spicier and more finely ground than the tomatoes at Pi. Topping options are numerous and include all the standard ones along with less common options like eggplant and broccoli.
Their white pizzas come in two varieties. I prefer the thin crusted white pizza with fontina cheese. It has an accent on oregano and pepper that gives it a unique flavor in comparison to other local white pies. Their more popular option is a white feta pizza. This pie has a Greek/Italian feel to it and is much thicker than the fontina pizzas.
In recent years, the owners split the restaurant into two separate ones with “Oakville Grille and Wine Bar” covering the front and Geppetto Restaurant having its own entrance on the side of the building. The pizzas, however, are slightly different so be sure to go to Geppetto’s for your pies. Despite being named after Pinocchio’s maker, our bill had “no stings attached”.
I give Geppetto Restaurant in Bethesda MD 5 out of 8 slices.