In the lede of my Brother's Pizzeria review I'm being a little sarcastic, if you can't tell,* asking why we can't trust Alec Baldwin's pizza judgment. Celebrities are always adopting some cause, championing something or other, and generally going on as if the public should give a shit about what they say about issues other than their acting.
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I'm happy to see Adriani's new venture take on a different vibe than Olio. Over there, it was all "I am an award-winning pizza-maker." All that crap all over the menu. Look, I know the awards are hard won and to be respected, but when it comes down to it, you're only as good as your last pizza. I prefer the buzz to come from word of mouth and trusted sources than from menu.
What I would actually worry about, if I were them, would be the nights when the place is packed. There's only one oven, and it's a fairly standard-size Neapolitan-style wood oven, capable of handling only a handful of pizzas at a time. Granted, pizzas in this type of oven need little cooking time, but still. With a pizzeria of this size, I expected two ovens back there.
Having met Al briefly at a canned-tomato tasting, I knew he was driven by his own curiosity and a desire to perfect his pizzas. I also suspected that any visit to Santillo's on my part would not be a short one. But, hey, I'm not complaining.
It's always interesting how old standbys play out in the media. When I first started pizza-blogging, Nick's was probably in the Top 10 of many a food writer or food lover. These days, it seems to be a cult favorite instead while all the new-fangled Neapolitan joints strut their stuff.
Every April Fools Day on Slice, with maybe only one year that I missed, I join the rest of the internet in trying to get one over on the audience. I have a sneaking suspicion that I may have repeated a previous year's joke when I claimed that the best pizza in NYC was at Uno Chicago Grill — but I'm not going to go look in the Slice archives to prove myself right.