Sal & Carmine Pizza—New York Slice Perfection on the Upper West Side

Sal and Carmines - outside - RESIZEThe Pizza Snob is a master at the art of working a pizza stop into almost any situation. With this having so far been a low-volume pizza trip to New York, a Saturday slice adventure was a must. In addition, with back-to-back Margherita experiences, it was time to return to the basics with a New York slice.

The regular-running weekend Manhattan street fairs have always been a source of entertainment for me and my travelling companions (today Mrs. Pie and my brother). This Saturday, the one on Broadway up in the 100’s made the timing perfect for a visit to Sal & Carmine Pizza at their scheduled 11:30 am opening.

Right at 11:30, I found the small room of S&C in the middle of a city block. However, the place was still dark except for some visible activity in the back room. After waiting a few minutes, it was obvious that today’s start was going to be delayed.

In the meantime, I had to attend to some serious business. I owe great thanks to the Starbucks Corporation for forever changing the Manhattan landscape by becoming a source of always available rest rooms!

Returning to the pizza joint, it was apparent that it was still going to be some time before the dough started baking, so I rejoined my crew further uptown at the street fair. The plan now was to have them drop me off at S&C on our way back downtown.

Sal and Carmines - counter - RESIZEHeading south on Broadway, we saw that the place was now open, and my team let me out to run in for my quick slice. Still not quite 12:15, I was surprised to see that the first pie of the day on the counter was already down to a mere two slices. I also had a chuckle when the Asian man in front of me gave the guy behind the counter a hard time for opening late. “I was tired” said the young man behind the counter feeling no shame.

At this point I was getting goose bumps since what I saw being dished out looked awfully good. Better yet, I noticed that Sal & Carmines was also a pizza-only joint—nothing else! There also was only serious pizza on display: plain, sausage or pepperoni—no silly stuff. They even immediately won my respect by giving me an oven fresh slice (a little steep though at $3.00) rather than one of the two that had been sitting there.

Sal and Carmines - inside - RESIZEWhile this slice would otherwise turn out to be absolutely perfect and delicious, I did pay the price for my impatience in not letting the oven-hot slice cool down: cheese slippage and a mouth-roof burn. But, oh what a slice! It was beautifully constructed with the best of ingredients and cooked in the conventional pizza oven to perfection.

One of the things that struck me about Sal & Carmine’s slice was how pure tasting the moderately-crisp crust was—perhaps one of the best I have ever had. A no-frills slice, it was not particularly seasoned, but the wonderful cheese and sauce sparkled on their own merits.

Sal and Carmines - slice - RESIZEOver the years, I have received repeated recommendations that Sal & Carmines made one of the best slices in town. I did my best to be unintimidated, and after trying one myself, there is no doubt that it truly is. A trip to Sal & Carmines is well worth it if you find yourself Uptown and West!

PIZZA SNOB RATING ***** Sets the Standard
Sal & Carmine Pizza
2671 Broadway (between 101st and 102nd Streets)
New York, NY 10025







One comment

  1. I went to Sal and Carmine’s last week.
    To me its an average slice.
    The dough wasn’t crunchy.
    I would just go to Patsy’s in Harlem which is not that far from here which is Superior in every way.

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