After a somewhat disappointing visit to Spak Brothers in Garfield, we've been taking pizza recommendations in Pittsburgh with a grain of salt. It wasn't until we met up with a group of acquaintances who shared our opinion of Spak Brothers (and Pittsburgh pizza as a whole) that we started to get excited about another option they were raving about.
That pizza joint was Slice on Broadway in Beechview, and it wasn't but an hour later that we were in our car driving out to give it a shot.
NY Style Pizza in the Burgh
Right away, one of the major selling points of Slice is that they offer thin, New York style pizza crust. This one feature alone made Slice stand out over the basic pizza crust that is offered at most shops in the city- which often seems to be the same dough mix from the same supplier (although it is only just a theory).
Our arrival to Slice was on a Saturday right at opening and we were greeted with several patrons patiently waiting for the manager to unlock the door and get the orders flowing. A good sign by any standards. The inside of the shop was quite reminiscent of any corner pizza shop in NYC with a small ordering window, a huge rack for pizza available by the slice (aha!) and a small seating area for those who wish to eat inside (okay, there is a larger seating area upstairs, but work with us here). Had we not known any better, we'd be convinced that this shop was straight out of New York.
As much as I wanted to order a pizza by the slice to get the true New York experience, when we order pizza at home we order the largest possible to have as many left overs as we can. At Slice this meant ordering 16 slice “Ginormous” which we split half-and-half on two specialty styles. Fifteen minutes later the pizza was out for us to enjoy.
Go Ginormous, Go Vegetarian
If there is anything more New York sounding than a thin-crust pizza that takes up the entire table, I'm not sure what it is. The self-proclaimed Ginormous pizza is just that, and the employee was more than happy to exclaim that “yinz have a lot of pizza to eat.”
The two specialty pizzas that we ordered halves of were the Athena, a white pizza topped with baby spinach, tomatoes, and crumbled feta; and the Guido, a sausage, pepper and onion loaded pizza. The winner was, hands down, the vegetarian Athena. The fresh flavors of the toppings and the crispy crust that actually snapped when you bent it (a necessity for the huge slices) gave us chills as we remembered all the good pizza we ate during our last trip to NYC.
The Guido, although a delicious pie with some incredible sausage, did not have that crispy crust like its other half. We're not sure if it was from the grease from the sausage, the extra pizza sauce, or maybe one-half of our pizza was not so lucky during the cooking process, but the dough did not have that familiar snap that we enjoyed with our first few slices of the Athena. Ignoring that, the Guido was probably one of the most delicious meat-based pizzas we've had in a long time. But if you are looking for the 100% New York style pizza, with that familiar thin, crispy crust, you can't go wrong with any of the vegetarian options at Slice for at least half of your pie.
Overall, we are really glad that we heard about Slice on Broadway and made the effort to get out there for a visit sooner rather than later. This is truly one of the best pizza shops in the city.
Our next goal is to test the limits of their delivery, and if they can make it over to the North Side this will be very, very dangerous.
Slice on Broadway is located at 2128 Broadway Avenue in Beechview. Slice also has a location at PNC Park and East Liberty.
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