It’s really amazing how many places advertise that they have the best pizza in New York. Some signs even proclaim the best pizza in the country or the world. I mean, who are these people? Can a chef decide he has the best pizza in the city and then post it on the window for all to believe?

I need more than just a sign to back this up. An article in NY Magazine works (like Kesté), a write-up on all the NY pizza blogs (like Di Fara) or maybe just a ton of recommendations and a personal facebook endorsement from my best friend’s mother (as is the case with Waldy’s).

Since its name kept coming up when talking about my pizza search and it has a very prominent sign claiming it New York’s Best Pizza, I had to find a lunch time to check out Waldy’s Wood Fired Pizza and see for myself.

I arrived around 1pm on a Wednesday and the small little restaurant was slamming. There’s a counter and a handful of tables that were all pretty much filled. There were also many people waiting for their take-out orders. I’m not usually in midtown around lunch time, but I imagine this is a typical weekday afternoon.

There’s no table service so I ordered my pizza up front. I was impressed by how friendly and helpful the staff were, especially considering how many orders they kept taking. I figured I would have to wait a bit so was very pleasantly surprised to discover that there was a bookshelf full of food books to peruse for just this very moment.

As I waited, I dove into Ed Levine’s book on pizza in America, A Slice of Heaven. The guy definitely has me beat on the pizza adventures. I become so engrossed, I almost forgot I was waiting for lunch.

So the deal at Waldy’s is that they make ultra-thin pizza. I mean, ultra thin. And they cook it in a wood oven with fresh, unique toppings. Of course, I stuck with the Classic Margherita, the pizza to judge all pizzas by.

I think  there’s a  fine line  between NY thin crust and a cracker with cheese and tomato  sauce. And  Waldy’s walks that line. Their crust is amazingly  thin. Of course, it was very crispy and had a nice  charred flavor.  But I do wish there was a bit more substance to the bread.

The mozzarella was incredibly creamy and I think there was  some parmesan because it had a nice  bite. The tomato sauce  itself might have been a bit more flavorful, but the addition of  fresh tomatoes  helped with that. The basil was shredded very  thin, but it was plentiful and added that fresh herby  finish.

The pizza here was tasty and I do love a thin crust, but at some point, it blurs the line between pizza and something else. I mean, much thinner and  Waldy’s would be nothing but toppings. And nobody seems to advertise the best toppings in the city – it’s the pizza people want!

Is Waldy’s Wood-Fired Pizza the best pizza in NY? It comes close to not being pizza at all, but since it stays on this side of the line, I give it a 7 out of 10 for some tasty flavors, good service, and some good reading material.

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Category: Pizza

About the Author

Brian Hoffman is a classically trained actor who is now a full-time tour guide, blogger, and food obsessive. He leads food and drink tours around New York City, which not only introduce tour-goers to delicious food, but gives them a historical context. He also writes food articles for Gothamist and Midtown Lunch in addition to overseeing this blog and a few food video series, including Eat This, Locals Know, and Around the World in One City.

2 Responses to The Thin Bread Line

  1. a chef says:

    Hello. First off, I want to tell you that I think you have something great going here and read most of these posts back to the first one. But, there is one thing I just want to bring up out of complete honesty, you describe your self as a “self proclaimed foodie”, but when I read your blog that title doesn’t make sense to me. Foodie usually comes with an air of knowledge about style and execution of fine fare and in the best way possible, you don’t seem to be that way. You seem to be on a quest to develop you palate rather than speak about how good it already is by deconstructing flavors and layers. I just don’t think you should bill yourself as a foodie (i personally have issues with that term anyway) BUT, more of a culinary adventurer, on a path of discovery. As a chef here in NYC, I like when people like you write about food, you’re accessible, fun, humble and honest. You seem to come to the table with and open mind and a hunger for more. Embrace that. A foodie already knows (or thinks they know) too much to be taught and you seem to be taking us on an adventure and we are learning right along with you about what you discover. So hey, that’s my two cents. Take it or leave it. Either way. I like this blog and will continue reading. Best of luck.

  2. Brian Hoffman says:

    You know, I’ve struggled with the self-proclaimed foodie title. Mainly because everybody seems to be a foodie nowadays (at least in NY) and the term seems so obvious and cliched. I agree with what you said, but I think that’s why I included the “self-proclaimed” bit. I’m not Anthony Bourdian, I’m just a normal guy who loves his food adventures. But I may have to re-think the terminology. Thanks for the advice.

    And thanks for reading the blog. I’m having such a great time experiencing and writing about all this and I’m thrilled that you enjoy following me on the journeys. Make sure you check out my first webisode (which does include the self-proclaimed foodie title), which I will be posting here tomorrow. And again, thanks so much for your kind words.

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