Pizzeria Di Giovanni

Over the weekend I had the pleasure of traveling to Charleston, South Carolina for the first time. It was a blast! I went with four friends and we satay in this wonderful round tree house on James Island, only about 15 minutes from downtown. Since I was going somewhere new, I’d hoped that I’d get to visit at least one pizza place, but I wasn’t sure if in such a short weekend I’d have the time. Fortunately, while wandering the city we came upon this wonderful pizza spot called Pizzeria Di Giovanni. The eatery is actually listed in Thrillist’s “Best Pizza in Charleston”. I think it may be my favorite pizza place to date.

Firstly its so eclectically cute. It’s a small space but a fun and playful atmosphere, filled with decorations all over the walls. Secondly, they have a 28-inch pizza. Yes, 28 inches. I wanted so badly to get that size, but I wouldn’t have any way to get that back to where we staying, let alone back home. But just the fact that there was an option to get a 28-inch pizza made me very happy.

Now for the pizza. Four out of five of us ordered slices. Not knowing how large the slices were – bigger than my head – I ordered two. The slices were. A sight to look at when they brought them out. Long, thin, and cheesy. And so good. I ordered a cheese slice as well as a pineapple and bacon, The other slices ordered at our table included a pepperoni, a mushroom, and a pepperoni and green pepper. Our fifth person ordered a pepperoni and onion calzone, which was just as large as the slices. Pizzeria Di Giovanni wants to make sure its customers eat. To be honest, I’m on the smaller scale in terms of size, and I was definitely the smallest person at our table. My friends were very curious if I’d be able to eat both slices when most of them were full after just one. I have to say, August 4th at 1:40pm, when I put away the last remains of my two slices, was one of the proudest moments of my life. My friends were amazed I’d eaten them both. But hey, the pizza was absolutely delicious, a ten out of ten. I’d highly recommend it to anyone going to Charleston. And at some point I’ll go back so I can get my 28-inch box.

Manhattan Pizza Exchange

Hey all you pizza lovers! I know it’s been a while since I’ve put out a blog post. But I promise you, Manhattan Pizza Exchange is worth a break from my hiatus. Located in Norcross, Georgia, Manhattan Pizza Exchange just had their grand opening. Sadly, I couldn’t attend the main festivities during the day. I had to swoop in close to 8pm, an hour before close. While the festivities were over, their pizza was still hot!

Manhattan Pizza Exchange markets itself as a New York style pizzeria (obviously), and I would say I really felt those vibes from the inside. I didn’t feel like I was just in Norcross anymore, but maybe an actual pizza parlor in New York. They have a sizable menu; in addition to pizza you can get salad, sandwiches, and pasta. My friend and I, of course, stuck to pizza. However, my friend did order garlic rolls as an appetizer and he thought they were absolutely scrumptious.

We ordered two different pizzas, my friend ordering a White while I got the Wall Street. I was in love with my pizza; they had all the meats on there, but yet the flavor of the pizza didn’t get lost. The sauce was delicious, and just enough- not too little, and not too much where the cheese and toppings were sliding off. I tasted the White pizza, and if you’re into a lot of cheese, that pizza is for you. Neither of us managed to finish our entire pizzas by the time of close, and we both ended up taking them home. Honestly I’m looking forward to finishing the rest today.

If you find yourself in Norcross, you need to stop in Manhattan Pizza Exchange!

Colossus

Photo May 02, 9 35 33 AM

Greek pizza. That is what is sold at the restaurant Colossus, located in a small strip off the main road in Tucker, Georgia. Greek pizza is good.

I can’t believe it took me so long to even realize that Colossus sold pizza. I knew when it first opened, but I’d known it to be a Greek restaurant, and I guess I didn’t think pizza with that. Walking into the restaurant for the first time, I was honestly a bit moved. It’s split up into two sections; both indoors, but because of the large garage door style windows, the first section still feels like outdoor seating. I really felt the Greek vibes in the decorating, with blue doors with white trim, lots of plants, and a lot of open space. I almost felt like I was on a beachfront restaurant- if it wasn’t for the cars going past outside the windows. The light wooded rustic doors was my favorite part.

 

Let’s talk about this Greek pizza. My dad and I split a medium – which in my opinion was quite large – and we picked the Colossus pizza (Ground beef, italian sausage, pepperoni, mushrooms, onions & green peppers), minus the mushrooms. In the first bite I knew two things immediately. The meat was real meat and the cheese was not your average mozzarella. I’m not sure what cheese they use – I want to assume feta but I really don’t know – but whatever they’re using, it gives the pizza a taste that’s different than most pizzas you’ll eat. The crust is really fluffy, which I think can be seen not only in the thinness of it, but also in the very light brown, hardly toasted color it is.

I really enjoyed this pizza, it was a really new taste for me that brightened up a drab Tuesday evening. I would certainly go there again with friends and family for a nice dinner where we can all sit beside one of their garage windows and really get the full experience.

Uncle Maddio’s

Hello! It has certainly been a minute since I’ve been able to put a post on here. It’s been a bit hectic moving, getting used to a new area, and getting adjusted in a new job. But pizza is my life, it keeps my heart ticking, so I’m happy to return to my blog and keep updating everyone on all the pizza spots.

Today after a lovely adult 8-hour work day, I decided to treat myself to some Uncle Maddio’s pizza. My mother actually introduced me to the restaurant a few years ago, and we went a few times together. Time flies however; it felt like I’d been there with my mom only a year ago, but it turns we out we haven’t gone in almost five years. I visited the Northlake location, and I really love the space they have for the eatery. The entire front half is windows, letting in lots of light. The restaurant certainly has a very family friendly atmosphere, with both tables and booth seating – enough of it to hold a decent size crowd – and artwork on the walls. They even have a drawing wall where kids can either draw on it with chalk, or hang up their own pictures. The crew members are all very friendly, and more importantly attentive to the customer. While I was there, the couple behind me in line ordered a gluten crust, and the crew member asked them if they chose gluten because of preference or allergy. I was both surprised and thrilled to hear such a question. Uncle Maddio’s is a build-your-own style establishment (I realize I’ve been visiting a lot of those lately!), so you start at one end and get to watch your pizza being made on the other side of the counter all the way until you’re paying at the register and your pizza is brought out to you.

I ordered a medium size pizza with ground beef, bacon, and pineapple. After working all day, I really wanted to just eat in the comfort of my own home; but that first bite was as good in my home as it would have been in the restaurant. In the first bite I tasted a mouthful of crunchy bacon, immediately followed up by the sweetness of the pineapple. The ground beef, although there was a lot, was more subtle compared to the bacon and pineapple, but all together it was a delicious combination. The slices are thin, so its not too much in one bite, and the crust has just enough crunch to balance out the softness of the rest of the slice. It wasn’t hard to remember why my mother and I came to Uncle Maddio’s years ago. It is a little pricey, but it’s definitely worth it considering you get a variety of options and fresh ingredients.

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Photo Apr 05, 6 09 46 PM

Vinny’s N.Y. Pizza and Grill

Yesterday I was doing some photography in Atlanta, and since the city is my favorite place for pizza, I decided to find a new pizza place to try. Wanting just a slice, I came across Vinny’s N.Y. Pizza and Grill in Piedmont.

In my opinion, Vinny’s is an interesting one. It’s located in a shopping center, and the feel inside is something between a modern and old school pizza place. They’re big on booth seating. The pizza itself is also interesting. The slices are long, maybe a hand and a half length, very similar to that of Fellini’s. My friend and I both ordered two slices each. Mine were a slice of The Works – minus mushrooms – and a slice of bacon. My friend ordered a slice of bacon and a slice of ham and pineapple. For someone looking for a hearty pizza, The Works is for them. The ingredients are stacked on; I was pretty full after just that slice, and I had to put some of the toppings to the side! And for the bacon slice, you will surely receive bacon bits in every bite. After eating both slices, I definitely felt full for at least an hour.

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Vinny’s is a cool quick place to pop in either by yourself, with friends, or with family! I’d recommend trying it at least once if you’re in the Piedmont area, or one of their other locations.

Empowering Women with Pizza

It’s the first day of Women’s History Month! How else can I celebrate such an empowering month than with dropping some goods about some notable women and how they’re making a difference. And of course, it has to do with pizza.

In Italy, from Naples to Verona, women are throwing a string of charity pizza dinners. All the proceeds from these dinners go to P.E.T.R.A, a Verona-based anti-violence center that provides both shelter and resources to abused women and children of all ages and nationalities.

The campaign is mainly led by eight female pizza chefs, who despite their struggles in a male-dominated industry, are now among Italy’s highest achieving pizza chefs. These chefs want to bring awareness to not only gender inequality, but also domestic violence.

Claudia Tosello is one of the eight pizzaiole, and although she is doing great things at Pizzeria Arcobaleno, she believes there is a disproportion of women to men who train to be pizza makers, about five for every 50 men. Figures like that fuel the desires of Tosello and the other chefs to provide more benefits for women in less fortunate situations.

Petra Antolini of Settimo Cielo, another of the eight pizzaiole, has spoken about how women pizzaioli have to work more than double to get the same recognition as their male counterparts. She wants to stress the importance of empowering women, not just in pizza-making but in all professions across Italy. With more gender equality comes more courage and the feeling of support for women, and that would impact how women report and stand up to injustices against them, especially violence.

Although this is happening in Italy, their cause is relevant all across the world. These women, just as many have done before them, are standing up for women’s rights and making a difference one pizza at a time. If you happen to find yourself in Italy, the first dinner is on March 18th at Settimo Cielo in Verona.

“Meet the Italian women using pizza to fight inequality and abuse”

Pizza Hut: The Literacy Project

Pizza Hut has been around for about 59 years serving up pizzas and smiles. Presently, they’re adding something new to their menu- books. Currently about 25 million children in the United States cannot read proficiently. This, and the overall importance of literacy, has led Pizza Hut to start a new program that will provide children with access to both books and educational resources.

Supporters can donate to The Literacy Project when they place orders from Pizza Hut or by visiting the campaign’s website at PizzaHut.com/TheLiteracyProject. Funds will be credited to educators to be used for purchase of books and other materials for schools and programs near each Pizza Hut location. The campaign will run from February 26th to April 15th, and in that time Pizza Hut and partner First Book plan to change the lives of 100 million people in just 10 years.

This campaign makes me so excited and I wish them all the best! Reading is so important, and as someone who has spent many long hours either in the library or curled up in a book at home, it brings joy to my heart to see pizza partnered with literacy.

“Pizza Hut ‘Starts A New Chapter’ To Help All Kids Succeed Through Reading, Takes Further Action To Support Literacy Through Annual Giving Program”