Monday, February 23, 2009

the search for Best Pizza in Cincinnati continues....

This is a first for this blog, we have a guest blogger; please welcome Avani of Cincinnati Imports who shares her opinion of the best pizza in town.

BEST PIZZA IN TOWN: The home of Liberal Foodie and her Husband

So when I heard that Liberal Foodie and Get in Mah Belly were going to be evaluating the local pizza joints of Cincinnati, my first reaction was: “Good luck and Godspeed.” I have had pizzas from several establishments in the area and overall I have found no places that I crave pizza from, with the exception of Deweys. Now mind you, Deweys is recommended for those of you who enjoy gourmet pizzas with toppings that you don’t find at most hole-in-the-wall, speed-dial pizza places. But I am not here to review Deweys, I am sure Liberal Foodie and Get in Mah Belly will do that soon enough (I hope). I am here to review the best homemade pizza I have had in years, which occurred this past weekend at the home of Liberal Foodie and her Husband. I will attempt to use the rating scales that were used in their prior review for consistency.

Where to start….well, I think it has to be the crust. Oh, the delicious and crispy crust provided via raw dough from my favorite grocery store, Trader Joe’s. It was a garlic and herb dough that needed to be rolled out or as Liberal Foodie’s husband did, pressed out by hand. This resulted in a weird pizza shape, one that was somewhat rectangular and oblong and diamond – I can’t really describe it and unfortunately, we ate the pizza so fast, there are no pictures, but I digress. The dough instructions stated that we needed to let the dough sit for 20 minutes, which was also recommended by the check-out girl at Trader Joe’s. Well, as a result of drinking too many mimosas that morning and afternoon, we let the dough sit for probably 1 hour. After pressing it out, we placed it in the oven for 6-8 minutes (a necessary step for the penultimate crispy crust we experienced). CRUST RATING: 5.

Then we topped it with Liberal Foodie’s homemade pizza sauce. Like her, I am not a big fan of sweet sauces but this sauce was not sweet at all. It was light and tasted of fresh tomatoes and herbs. I am not sure what she put in the sauce to be honest (hopefully she will blog about that recipe soon), but the sauce was divine and I am sure had a bit of crack in it (SAUCE RATING: 4.5 out of 5). One of the guests at the house was a vegetarian so we decided to do a Veggie Supreme pizza. After spreading the sauce on the pizza, we added toppings, which included Trader Joe’s mozzarella cheese, fresh onions, bell peppers, and mushrooms. I have to say, this pizza could not have turned out more perfect. The cheese was perfectly melted, the kind that is somewhat stringy when you cut it and melts in your mouth upon first bite (CHEESE RATING: 4.5 out of 5). The toppings had cooked perfectly too with the vegetables being crisp-tender (TOPPING RATING: 4 out of 5 but only because I like fancy and/or meat toppings typically).

Trust me when I tell you that this was one of the best pizzas I have had in Cincinnati. Now all we have to do is convince Liberal Foodie and her husband to open up a real pizza-joint in this city.


Anonymous said...

The Mrs & I make the best traditional Pizza Margherita at home. We make dough in our bread machine, using Ethan Becker's Bread Machine Pizza Dough recipe from The Joy Of Cooking. We roll it out very thin and briefly prebake the crust. We use crushed San Marzano Tomatoes, Bufala Mozzarella and fresh basil. Nothing else, it's sheer simplicity and it tastes just like the real thing that we ate in Naples.

liberal foodie said...

thanks for the comment. I've heard many of times simplicity is the key to a tasty pizza. We'll definitely have to try the pizza with bufala mozzarella and san marzano tomatoes using TJ's dough.

Anonymous said...

BTW, something I found interesting during my trips to Italy- Nobody in Italy drinks wine with pizza. The only folks I ever saw drinking wine with a pie were tourists, usually Brits or Americans. Italians usually drink beer with pizza, Peroni, Moretti & Heineken are the major brands, or they were drinking Coke. Strange, eh?

Avani said...

i forgot to mention...a pizza stone may have been the key to the crispy crust....i tried another version of this pizza at home this weekend and realized that the crust was definitely better due to the pizza stone or maybe it was Liberal Foodie's husbands hand squashing...hmmm!

liberal foodie said...

CincyCapell, I would have never thought. Given what we know, Italians drink wine at every chance and opportunity, I am surprised they prefer beer with pizza. In our house, it's usually beer and pizza as well. Now mind you, it's not Peroni but I'll take a Sierra Nevada or OTR with my pizza any day.

Avani- I agree, the stone really makes a different in the crust along with the husband working the dough, of course.