I have been posting pictures of my food on Facebook ever since I started an account in 2006. It’s something I’ve always done and has been recorded through countless photo albums well before the digital era (when people still actually printed pictures). My habit of food-photography (food porn) became so full on, that I had complaints from people (aka friends) frequently about my life’s virtual online menu. The prevalence of my daily eats began to evoke all kinds of thoughts and emotions from the public. It got some people excited or happy, others jealous and angry and I occasionally even received threats of being “defriended” or removed from feeds if this behavior were to continue. Hence, the blog was born.
When I uploaded pictures of John’s Pizza on Facebook, it was evident that it had struck a special chord in every NY’ers heart… even the part-timers and ones that had “done their time” in this concrete jungle. Located on 278 Bleecker Street between 6th and 7th avenue, this Village staple, with its “No Slices” policy, has been filling Greenwich Village’s bellies with pies since 1929. Besides the comments received from friends such as, “This is our Sunday tradition,” or “That’s my favorite place to go for an affordable Friday night outting”, the interior in itself proves this place holds a lot of nostalgia for all.
The Interior: The walls are adorned with artwork old and new creating a curious assemblage on the eyes. The first room where you enter has two rather large original paintings from the 1920’s running the length of the restaurant with the tiny bit of surrounding wall left exposed and filled in with red paint. The second room (where we dined) seemed to be dedicated to recent art works and some psychedelic imagery.
Their menu is divided into four sections consisting of (the obvious) pizza available in 14″ or 16″ pies with toppings, calzones, pastas and side dishes. While “the simple thing to do” would be to bullet point toppings available (and call it a day), John’s of Bleecker Street makes sure to expand on their extensive menu pages by listing every possible combination of the same 15 ingredients to “help” you make your choice. A pinwheel with pictures would be equally as effective. I would like to imagine that they are encouraging you to take your sweet time reading about pages of topping combos as you envision all of the flavorful possibilities blending together on your tongue like a symphonic variation. It’s either that, or they are trying to keep you busy reading a novel as the servers buy time scurrying about the dining room responding to demands of “pepperoni and extra cheese please”!
I wish I could say that their method of listing the topping selection was simplified for pastas and calzones, however it wasn’t in spite of their visually straightforward website. We ordered a pitcher of beer to share and root beers for a non-alcoholic alternative, two pies and their signature House Salad served with olive oil and balsamic vinegar… True Italian Style.
The only way to judge any pizzeria is by their most basic slice. Obviously we were more than happy with our classic Margarita pie. The crust was thick and chewy and the body of the pie thin and crunchy. The cheese, tomato and sauce ratio was pretty much spot-on. I covered my slices with Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper and oregano because “That’s how I do,” and saw that it was good.
I would never order another pie with black olives and anchovies again here, or anywhere else for that matter. It was so salty I wanted to “vomskiez.”
On your trip to John’s, don’t forget to stop by an ATM before being seated since they operate with a CASH ONLY policy. Get those pizza yum yumz inside you fast!
Until Next Time…