Why do I call New Jersey the Pizza State? Well, one reason is that each town usually has so many pizza joints that the people who live in those places don’t even know all those that exist. Case in point was when I suggested to my Edison-residing brother that we check out the highly Yelp-rated Francesco’s Pizzeria & Restaurant. He’d never heard of the place.
Lunchtime one Friday afternoon, we pulled into the as-ordinary-as-can-be strip center on the late side of the noon hour and parked right in the front parking lot. Our walk through Francesco’s shotgun-style layout took us through rows of cushioned booths on both sides of the room up to the counter where there was a quite spectacular pizza assortment on display.
Francesco’s is one of those Jersey joints where there are more different things on the menu than you think would be humanly possible to make under one roof. In addition to everything Italian, these guys can also fix you up with a cheese steak or a burrito.
But, there was nothing on my mind other than pizza, although I did add the twist of adding a tempting-looking Grandma slice (a thin square with the sauce on the top of the cheese) to my normal plain cheese mainstay.
Francesco’s slice was quite tasteful. Although fairly respectful to tradition, it did lean towards being heavy with both its cheese and oil. The sad result of this cheese overage was some nasty slippage off the crust which made eating more of a challenge than it deserves to be. Mine was served crisp but a little too hot, which when added to the mis-cut of the slice that made it hard to properly fold, created a somewhat challenging eating escapade.
But, to set things straight, sometimes good spot-on tasting ingredients like this one had can prevail over these minor manufacturing flaws. This was a good overall slice. In addition, the Grandma slice rocked with each delicious bite and the cranberry chicken salad I had as a starter was fantastic.
Francesco’s has the makings of a great overall restaurant that makes a fairly good slice of pie. However, it’s not one that I’d crawl across the desert over broken glass for. Just another great offering from the Pizza State.
PIZZA SNOB RATING ****Near Perfection
Francesco’s Pizzeria & Restaurant
2595 Woodbridge Avenue
Edison, NJ 08817