July 17, 2012

The new bar (pie) in town and the controversy that ensues

This post started out as a quick little aside to supplement our review of Ridgeway Pizza: a place we wrote about a few years ago that’s made some little menu tweaks worth mentioning since we last checked in.
Behold, the latest addition to the Ridgeway Pizza arsenal: the Colony-style pan pizza. It’s unmistakable, really—thin crust, pan-cooked edges, the trademark lacing of cheese due to hot oil bubbling up from within, complete with greasy box and requisite pile of napkins (not pictured, but you get the idea).
Ridgeway’s spin on the Stamford novelty implements some of their tried and true ingredients—namely a jalapeño and habanero infused olive oil with incredible depth and cheese that doesn’t degrade into a cold, rubbery sheet in 15 seconds—in the confoundingly popular framework of a pie from some dive bar down the Cove.
While we still prefer Ridgeway’s traditional pizza over most others in town, this little greaseball has its merits. For one, it improves upon the temperature issue that plagues these types of pizza by using premium cheese not acquired in a back alley somewhere. Further, a more concentrated, acidic sauce cuts the greasiness inherent to a pizza slathered with hot oil rather nicely, making for what we think is a nice update on a style of pizza that garners most of its fans from its uniqueness and the tradition of being thrown a paper plate than, you know, taste.
Which brings us to item number two. This article started out as a blurb, then we stumbled upon this little chestnut in which Stamford’s two newest pan-pies (the second being Riko’s née Rico’s) were pitted up against the originator in some sort of taste test involving printed score sheets (so 2009), a business casual dress code, and celebrity guest judge, Clay Aiken. A corporate newspaper chain-sponsored pizza tournament (cool idea, by the way), if you will.
The Hearst Connecticut Media Group gang goes on to call our preferred Ridgeway oil-slinger a cheap knockoff of Colony’s culinary shipwreck, even going as far as to give them the edge over Riko’s for “atmosphere and overall experience.” (Good Lord.)
Whatever, that’s cool. What rings loudest here, though, is the stark disconnect between the opinions of Your Pizza Judges and some guys in a media castle somewhere. They love the things we hate, they hate the things we love, up is down, down is up, and et cetera. They go on to close the book on the “great Stamford pan-pizza debate” just in time for us to whip it right back open. While some pizza lovers in name only (PLINOs?) might grow tired of this drama, we friggin’ love it.
So, to our loyal readers, do yourselves a favor and patronize the new guys. Consume. Go out, try these three pizzas (or try 50, go nuts). Then come back here, or to Facebook, or the tweeter and make some noise. It’s a lot more entertaining than arguing about politics.

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