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Considering that I was raised over 1,200 miles away from the seminal American pizzas in the Northeast, my journey towards enlightenment might seem to be an unlikely odyssey. There was nothing even remotely like a New York style slice to be had along the Florida panhandle in the early 1970s. Whatever chain pies I was eating, peaked a curiosity to grow my knowledge, learn to bake, and eventually discover the handful of American greats.

This site’s main focus will be highlighting truly noteworthy pizzerias along the along the Gulf Coast from the Florida panhandle to New Orleans. The style of pie will typically be a New York slice, although other major regional styles and some flavorful family recipes may be considered. Even if a place makes a delicious artisanal white pie, the bar is set for them to show mastery of a perfect tomato sauce and cheese topped pie to gain attention. Occasionally the focus will stray to other cuisines and geographical areas when I stumble across something truly exceptional.

 

The perfect New York style slice might seem easy to spot by appearance, but looks alone won’t tell the story. The ideal slice should be fairly thin, but not paper thin. The bottom should have a bit of charring or browning, should snap a bit when bitten, but still have a bit of bread like chew. The sauce and cheese should be applied sparingly, and should match a certain range of flavors. The sauce should not be too paste-like or sweet, and the cheese should have a nice almost stringy suppleness. Even in New York city, no two slices are identical, but the overriding criteria here is balance and craftsmanship.

The journey is ongoing, so please feel free to email me about any favorite places, or suggestions.