Lombardi’s v. Grimaldi’s

Since we’re on the comparison track, another quest of mine in NY was of course, the pizza quest.  Needless to say that Binks and I are huge pizza fans and you really just can’t go to NY without getting a NY slice.

After some minor research, we compared the highest and most popularly rated pizza places in NY according to Yelp – well minus a few that I didn’t get to try.

First, to Lombardi’s.  After we walked from the Lower West side to SoHo, we were famished.  Upon reaching Lombardi’s we were concerned about the stated wait time of approximately 45 minutes.  What was supposed to be a long wait turned into a 15 minute rest time as many people whose names were called, I think, just didn’t hear it.  So, we were immediately seated and given a menu.  We knew what we wanted.  Half of the Original Margherita and half pepperoni.

Delicious.  Let’s start with the crust as it really was my favorite part.  Usually unnoticed, this crust was perfectly chewy and had a taste – and not just a ‘I’m there as a bread’ taste.  Second, the sauce was quite flavorful without being overpowering for the pie.  I preferred the margherita, but Binks favored the pepperoni – probably for the added saltiness. Can I say that b/c of this experience, I now am requiring (to whoever will listen) that all my pizzas come with fresh basil baked in?!?!  Hello Flavor Town!

I left a very happy and satisfied blimp.

A few days later, we took some cousins, my sister, my mom and my aunt on a trek to Grimaldi’s.  We met them up near Wall St., which I discovered is not that large of a street at all, and decided to walk the Brooklyn Bridge.  Slightly over a 1 mile walk, at around .25 miles, my mom and aunt started wondering how much longer it would be.  Oy ve.

Once we got there, around 7:00 p.m., the line was discouraging.   For our group of 6, this seemed daunting as we were sure that the 2-person groups would be picked over us, which was happening.  But, 30 minutes later, the Grimaldi’s person came out and said, who was that group of six?  We raised our hands – how polite.  He said, “You’re up – come on in.”  You could feel the tension in the line.  And the happiness on my mom and aunt’s face.

We got in and got seated.  We ordered one margherita pie and one pepperoni.

This is what I managed to get a picture of after our hungry group saw the food.

I have to say, didn’t beat Lombardi’s.  And, I was expecting it to considering that everyone says the best pizza comes from Brooklyn.  Everyone I talked to anyway.  Tell me if you know different.  I liked it but it left me wanting something more from the slice.  For instance, the crust lacked real flavor to me.  While cooked perfectly, I wished for the texture of the one from Lombardi’s.  Also, (again b/c I was spoiled), there was a lack of flavor in the sauce – especially the basil flavor.  And, unfortunately I know why.  Watching them making it, I noticed that at the end of the assembly, the man simply throws a pinch of (what I saw of) Italian seasoning and basil right in the middle of the pie.  So if you look at the slice above, there is a basil leaf there and aside from that, no real depth of flavor compared to my previous experience at Lombardi’s.  We all picked the pepperoni – the other one was deemed too plain.

So, in this comparison of Grimaldi’s v. Lombardi’s – Lombardi’s takes the pie!

Oh and turns out – there’s a Grimaldi’s in Dallas – whomp whomp whomp.

Other places I wanted to (and one day will try) – DiFiara’s and Lucali – obviously, this list is not exhaustive.

Have you been to either?  Do you agree or disagree with me?  Are you a NY pizza fan?  What’s your favorite NY place?

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19 Comments

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19 responses to “Lombardi’s v. Grimaldi’s

  1. OMG, I LOVE this!!!!!!! I’ve been making a list of places I want to go when we’re in NYC in November and this is great info!
    Hope all is well…… 🙂

  2. omg i LOVE grimaldi’s. my fav pizza ever.

  3. The truth is that I’m not a huge pizza fan but suddenly I have a hankering for Grimaldi’s! Imagine that.

    Hope all is well with you my friend.

  4. I’m a big pizza fan, but have not experienced NY pizza…well, upstate doesn’t count!

  5. The Grimaldi’s in Dallas is quite good! As far as Dallas pizza places go. 🙂 I’ve never been to the other 2 in NYC…

  6. It’s not even 730am and now I want pizza-thanks! I havent been to either one but I feel compelled to fly up there and try both.

  7. I went to Lombardi’s when I went to NYC! Definitely some of the best pizza I’ve ever had. The all time best pizza place is Pizza Bella in San Diego, I think. SO GOOD!

  8. I think Lombardi’s is good pizza. They used to be better but they replaced their oven a few years ago… since then it hasn’t been as good. Arturo’s, John’s and Harry’s are the best!!!!!

  9. I’m glad you are doing well! And you should be chomping away on the pizza…it’s the only time you can do so with a totally legitimate excuse.

    I’m thinking of hitting up Lombardi’s when I get to NYC in November. Can’t wait!

  10. Obviously I left this comment on the wrong post…sorry. It’s Monday morning! And that’s my only excuse.

  11. I still think the best pizza comes from NY but–I agree with you about Grimaldi’s. over-hyped.

  12. Pingback: Chicago-Style Deep Dish Pizza | OliePants

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