November 2016 Update: We have made it through our second full year in Estes Park, CO with tremendous growth and success!
Here’s what I’ve learned the hard way.
Hand tossed, real New York pizza right here in Colorado! Antonio’s family has a 116-year lineage in NYC and he is a 4th generation NY’er; his children are 5th generation Italian New Yorkers. His wife’s family is right around the block from his in Brooklyn’s Dyker Heights/Bay Ridge section. She is also a 4th generation Italian American from NY. No shortage of authenticity here.
What makes a New York Pizza a NY Pizza?
- The dough formula
- The sauce formula
- Grande Cheese
- A NY pizza is hand tossed, not pressed or pre-formed.
- A NY pizza is cooked on a deck or wood-fired oven – not a conveyor oven unless the conveyor has stones rather than grates
- New York pizza has crust and the crust is coveted, not discarded as waste
- A New York PIZZERIA is something special. Colorado is a pretty transient place in comparison with Long Island and the boro’s of NYC. In NY, people go to the same haunts over and over for their entire lives. My Grandmother has been in the same house for 75 years! We’ve gone to the same pizzeria since 1979. Here at Antonio’s, you will feel the warmth that I felt was missing from most pizzerias here. People will know your name, your pie and whatever you feel like telling them. Excellent conversations are the norm here. This makes the place special. Often, our customers have conversations with one another while eating their pizza. It’s that kind of place. Our employees are passionate about the quality and excellence of the food they create for you; great pride and care is taken. Plus, they love a good conversation, are educated and above all, personable. During the busiest hours of the weekend, it reminds me so much of back home. The smell, the pies stacked on the oven, the people milling about waiting for their pie, the “how long for a large pie to go?”. It’s great!
You can visit 100 pizzerias in New York and taste 100 different variations – within a 5 mile radius. Some will have more semolina than others in the dough, some will have none at all, some will have no garlic in the sauce, some will have garlic brushed crust or swear that King Arthur flour is better than Caputo 00. These are simply signatures. Most use Grande Mozzarella and a similar dough recipe. The fact is, the dough formula is simple compared with the sauce formula. I’ve spoken with pizzeria owners who don’t put (fill in the blank) in their sauce for whatever their personal reason is. The truth is, each of those guys have been in business forever and the taste is one thing- consistent! Same taste, every time. Doesn’t matter which ingredient is their secret, it’s always there. Head to Chicago and there are an entirely different set of standards which I personally know nothing about and will not attempt to recreate. Our pizza is made to the New York- specifically what you would find on Long Island in any corner restaurant or in Brooklyn with the added benefit of a hardwood fired, brick oven in addition to the standard deck oven. Again, each shop has it’s own sauce/dough/cheese recipe and each stands behind it. If they were all the same, there would be no benefit to visiting one over another.
Some pizzerias have a sign that says NY Style. That is different than the true New York recipes we use. Style speaks to look and feel. Real New York means these are the same recipes we would use in NYC. You can use any dough sauce and cheese combo, then call it anything you want. The proof is in the taste. Our taste is super specific to where I come from. That’s what was missing in my life and so many others who come in every week! I cannot tell you how many people have had their eyes roll back in their head and say something like “where the hell have you been for 20 years?” or “this is the best pizza I have ever had, anywhere.” And these are not from kids, but may people who are 50-70 years old with many miles under their belts. That makes my day!
When the taste, not how many pies you get for $X matters, come to Antonio’s Real New York Pizza & Deli.
Order online here: https://mkt.com/antoniosnewyork or call 970-586-7275 to place an order.