If Clara Peller, of Wendy’s Hamburger fame, had been truly intrigued about discovering America’s true favorite in the food department, she might have asked more appropriately “Where’s the Mozzarella?” Like football, pop music and democracy, brick oven pizza stands in the long line of things that begin overseas, long before they were sneakily imported, violently altered and redefined by the Americans. Any way you slice it, there are few things as venerated and decidedly non-divisive as pizza! In fact, it is estimated that on any given day, dinner or lunch (even breakfast!), at least 13% Americans would be found with a slice in their hands! Guilty!
Unflinching devotion to brick-oven pizzas, parties and the desire not to be caught up in the cog of life is ingrained in the hearts and souls of Americans. Delving in to the bubbly cheesy carb-filled pie, topped with dollops of scrumptious tomato sauce, chunks of grilled succulent meat, a whole lot of crunchy paraphernalia and a generous smattering of melting cheese, basking in a searing girdle over a brick fire to imbue it with char and smoke, makes it truly enticing and cruelly overwhelming not to fall in love with its hearty goodness. What’s not to love about the food sent from heaven?
Not to dampen your spirits, but this inexorable part of Americana life tumbled down not from heaven, but is the brainchild of Italy. The earliest form of pizza was nothing more than crude bread, sopped up with gravy as a thrifty fare for the working man. Not surprisingly, pizza arrived in the US with the Italians who came to the country in the late 19th century. The rumor soon caught fire and people flocked to the street vendors to get their taste. Gennaro Lombardi, however, was the only contender to open the first ever pizzeria in the USA!
Considering the obsessive passion pizza inspires, discovering the most popular brick oven pizzas is a tough nut to crack, with fans staking out their affinity with impassioned fervor. After diligent eavesdropping and delectable days of tasting, here’s our round up of America’s favorite pizzas:
1. Chicago Style Pizza
Chicago is irrevocably the home to the most gratuitous deep dish pizza. Prepared in a dish pan, which resembles more of a pie dish, the uber-deep crust is pooled with savory gravy and heaps of mozzarella, oozing from the seams, crowned over with mouthwatering toppings. The wood fired extravaganza of Chicago style pizza is the ultimate summer blockbuster of the pizza realm.
2. New York Pizza
New York style pizza has a crisp, stone-baked Neapolitan crust (as in from Naples, Italy), slices so large it’s de rigueur to fold them down the middle to eat, and tapering down to a thin middle crust! Instead of using a pizza pan, the pizza is simply assembled on a pizza peel and shoved in the brick oven for an almost pilgrimish dinner!
3. Margherita Pizza
Incorporating the true soul of Italy, a Margherita pizza is prepared with ingredients reminiscent of an Italian flag. Combine a tender crispy crust with classic tomato sauce, chewy mozzarella cheese and a sprinkling of basil, and celebrate the glorious history of Italy!
4. Hawaiian Pizza
Evoke the tropics in every bite with this whacky spin on the classic cheese and sauce with ham and pineapples! Pizza doesn’t get better than this!
5. Pepperoni Pizza
Once the zesty waft of pepperoni reaches your nostrils, we guarantee a temporary lapse of control and insatiable hunger! Thin crunchy crust with hearty toppings of pepperoni and oozing streams of cheese, and we have a new American staple.