Three of us made it to the new Chestnut Hill MA outpost of the legendary Frank Pepe Pizzeria of New Haven this afternoon, for the very first time. At 3:30PM on a sunny Saturday, we were seated immediately.
WHITE CLAM PIZZA ($25.50)
~Medium (16"), with rated cheese, olive oil, garlic, oregano, and we added bacon for $3. The liberal bacon (not crispy, and a bit like Irish bacon) complemented the clams and garlic very well. Medium char. I prefer the white clam pizza at Area Four, but this was still a tasty pizza with an interesting, somewhat crispy, thin charred crust.
QUATTRO FORMAGGI PIZZA ($19.50)
~Medium, with Mozzarella, Asiago, Goat cheese, Pecorino, and basil. A couple of us preferred this to the white clam. Medium-plus char.
Also had a couple of Sam Adams and a Foxon Park White Birch soda.
2 medium pizzas was a lot of pizza for 3 people. I felt nicely full after 4 slices. We ended up eating the equivalent of 1 medium and taking the rest home (you have to box it up yourself).
Service was just OK. We asked that the two pizzas come out 10 minutes apart, but of course they came out together. Be careful when they stack them, since the stand is not properly designed to support such a large baking sheet on top and I can imagine some pizzas ending up on the floor. And they really need to sweep the floors more regularly, since there was a lot of random trash lying around.
I would say it's a good pizza, pushing very good, but not great in my personal pizza pantheon (of course, I'm partial to Chicago-style, so YMMV). I live about 20 minutes away, and ordinarily I would say that I wouldn't go out of my way again, unless I was visiting Sur La Table in the mall.
However, I will definitely be a regular at Pepe's for one reason, and one reason only: they are located exactly next to Morano Gelato Chestnut Hill.
OMG, THAT WAS THE BEST GELATO I'VE EVER HAD!!!
Chestnut Hill Mall
199 Boylston St
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
Medium (16"), with rated cheese, olive oil, garlic, oregano, and we added bacon for $3 ($25.50)
Medium, with Mozzarella, Asiago, Goat cheese, Pecorino, and basil ($19.50)
Amazing, amazing gelato! Large 3-flavor, with Stracciatella (chocolate chip), Limone (lemon), and Fragola (strawberry) at Morano Gelato in Chestnut Hill mall.