Grimaldi’s — Or, how I missed my flight

At Grimaldi’s, I noticed a poster facing me. “I’ll make you a pizza you can’t refuse,” it read, alongside an Italian man and a pizza. And this pizzeria wasn’t kidding.

Because of it, I missed my flight home to San Francisco.

But how could one say no to a Grimaldi’s pizza with extra mozzarella, extra basil and pepperoni? The tomato sauce had the sweetness from long-stewed tomatoes, the earthy flavors of oregano and rosemary. The true mozzarella slices (none of the shredded, part-skim mozzarella used by most pizza chains) were partially browned from roasting in the oven, and rendered the occasional air pocket. The basil was spicy, sweet, clovelike. And the crust — ohhh, that crust — was thin, but not to a crisp. It made a crackle upon my bite, but in its aftermath it simply gave way to a soft, smoky-flavored chewiness.

Grimaldi’s Pizza with Pepperoni, Mozzarella & Basil

I asked our waiter why he thought Grimaldi’s (in my opinion, the best pizza, world over) had such amazing pizza.

“We use the coal-burning brick oven, which keeps the temperature higher than a wood-fire oven,” he said. Apparently, it’s a subtle art, and Grimaldi’s pies even vary depending on who is making the pizza that day. “If the pizza’s too close to the flames, the dough gets mushy,” he explained. “If it’s farther away, the crust gets crispy on the outside and perfectly blackened on the bottom.”

Was it worth missing my check-in time at the airport, only to wait 3 1/2 hours to barely make it standby on the next flight? Stressful as it was, yes. It was worth every bite.

Grimaldi’s, 19 Old Fulton St., Brooklyn, New York. 718.858.4300

10 Responses to “Grimaldi’s — Or, how I missed my flight”

  1. Oh I’m in NJ/NY this weekend! I will try to get a slice of grimaldi’s (do they even do slices?) while I’m there. Where is it located?

  2. It is literally under the brooklyn bridge on the brooklyn side — 19 Old Fulton Street. No slices, but I could eat a whole pie!!

  3. I enjoyed every slice! Although I have to say that the pizza from Delfina in SF is also delicious.

  4. I think you’re one of my foodie soulmates! It’s really awesome that you have been talking more to the people who work at restaurants. That kind of interaction is something really lacking in today’s food culture. A new blog topic?

  5. You think? I feel that in many ways I’m less connected to people at restaurants than other people I know. I have so many friends who are always talking about knowing the owner, chef, sommelier at restaurants…i feel like I’m always so disconnected.
    We are foodie soulmates though! Have you ever been to Grimaldi’s?

  6. […] say that I think it was, with crust so light it was ethereal. It isn’t as good in my mind as Grimaldi’s in Brooklyn, but they are in two totally different pizza categories: Picco’s is light, wet […]

  7. […] The pizza of the day had red peppers, mozzarella, feta, olive tapenade and parsley. The crust was crispy — a little too crispy — and my pizza was unevenly cooked (one side was a little burnt from being too close to the fire). While it was a tasty pizza, it didn’t compare to, say, Pizzeria Delfina, Pizzeria Picco and definitely not Grimaldi’s. […]

  8. I used to live practically next to Grimaldi’s. We’d place an order and walk over there to pick it up – therefore skipping the sometimes crazy long line outside (thank goodness they got heat lamps). It is by far the best! In summer, a good follow up is to walk down to the pier and get some icy treats at the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory.

  9. That sounds so great. My favorite memory there was the first time I ever visited — it was three girls. We walked over the Brooklyn Bridge, ordered takeout from Grimaldi’s and inhaled an entire large pizza while watching the sun set over the pier. Then we all glanced at one another and asked, “Shall we order another?”

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