Of the handful of pizza joints that spot the outer stretches of West Town, this family-run, takeout and delivery only – not a single table in sight – newbie perches itself amidst the hood’s new chic bar and boutique set. As a result, the prices are a bit steeper than the two-buck-and-change norm for a slice – think $4 for cheese – but because its kitchen-and-cashier status, all attention is paid to made-on-premises ingredients, with hands and bakers ovens replacing rollers and machines.
Though titled Paula & Monica, 20-year pizzeria vets John Fornari and George Dragne did so in honor of their wives, who sometimes help prepare the joint’s signature thin-crust and pan pies, starting at $9 for a 10-inch, and $17 for a 14-inch.
Ingredients are market fresh, but pretty standard, with special mention going to the “Mexican Pizza,” slathered in ground beef, cilantro, jalapenos, pico de gallo, sour cream and guacamole. Otherwise, the slow roast chicken, paired with coleslaw and French bread is a tender champion starting at $4 for a quarter chicken. And sub and hot sandwiches should delight meat lovers looking for hefty cuts of ham, turkey, mortadella, capicola and Italian sausage options that never push $6.50.
Average cost: $10-$20
Centerstage Reviewer: Gavin Paul