I ate at La Pizza Fresca on my recent trip to New York, following the recommendation in the Eclectic Guide. It was quite good, but I register the following objections.
I ordered the pizza with brocolli rabe. The brocolli blanketed the pie, somewhat overwhelming the subtle flavors of the cheese and crust. Is this authentic? I was under the impression that Neaopolitan pizza makers are sparing with the toppings in order to promote a harmony of flavors.
The crust was a little too uniform. In an issue of Simple Cooking John Thorne quotes Ed Behr as saying that the Italian pizzaola chars or even burns the crust "without apology." This pale crust seemed to have forgotten its roots.
It was still the best pizza I've had in a while, but I used to eat at John's on Bleeker when I lived on the East coast about 20 years ago, and it didn't challenge that memory.
I just looked up the Big Dog's recent postings, indicating decline, on La Pizza Fresca. Perhaps you could start a "Slight Downhill Alert" page. But the book is great (the "guarantee of dissatisfaction" is quite a stroke) and this board is an awesome supplement.
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