There are a lot of images in this album, but I find them all essential so I’m keeping them. Do something about it. Gino & Joe’s! Another one of the more commonly requested reviews, which also happens to be a pizzeria I haven’t ever eaten at. Actually, today I realized that I’ve never even been to the Main Place mall! After seeing the inside…I’m not totally shocked I haven’t heard about it. When was the heyday for this bad boy? I have a feeling this place will be kick ass in a few years when someone dumps some skrilla into it. Maybe make it one giant pizzeria?!? World’s largest?!? Open that wallet, Terry!
The mall itself was a lot of closed up shops and vacant storefront, but Gino & Joe’s was packed to the gills with a line out the door. That big black blob would be people, but I decided I wouldn’t be responsible for revealing anyone’s daytime routine. Lord knows I don’t want that out there. I feel creepy enough taking secret pizza photos alone in the corner…Anyhow, it was a beautiful day downtown! The deal was 2 + Fountain Pop = $8.50. Steep, but these slices don’t play around. Let’s begin.
Those are full-sized plates that these monsters sit upon, my man. I saw a lot of people getting single slices, and I thought, “pussies”. Turns out I should have been one myself, because I now understand that 2 of these is not the norm for a lunch break, and I had a very uncomfortable workday as a result. Live Laugh Love. The guy on the left is Meatball-Pepperoni. Not reviewed, but also not forgotten. The crust scares me a bit. Very…grey.
This is a sexy slice. This folded like a NY slice should. This would fuck your fake gluten allergy right up. You would be back on the kale for weeks, baby. I wasn’t even really hungry today, but I am looking forward to this.
This cheese is nearly perfect. For a NY slice, I thought there would be less of it, but my god it was laid on heavy and delicious. Not a grease ball by any means and was super stringy. Nice salty kick and sweet on the finish. Really REALLY good.
The pepperoni is very good. They lay nice and flat, and they cover most of the slice. Not a super distinct flavor, but it was certainly there and they laid it on heavy. Weakest aspect of the slice.
I just like this shot. The cheese and pepperoni were delicious together, and you can see the thinness of the dough. Thicker than Gino’s NY, but thinner than Casa. Really in the zone for a NY slice.
The sauce is very rich. It was as thick as La Nova’s, but no sweetness. Very strong herby flavor, which I love. It wasn’t dripping out of the slice like some Buffalo-style slices, but it was more than the micro-dusting I’ve had on other NY slices. Really on point.
So…this is the first time I’ve seen this. I don’t know why I assumed that all places were making their sauce in-house, but now that I think of it…most of them probably don’t. If this is an example of canned/bagged sauce, I am behind it. This was delicious, but I don’t know if I would keep it out front in the restaurant. It just took some of the authenticity away from the pizza, although I still really enjoyed it. Ignorance is bliss.
Gino & Joe’s dough is amazing. It has everything I would want in a NY style slice. They cook it about ¾ of the way through, and then finish it off in the oven. Despite the line of people steadily growing out the door, the man on the oven pulled my slice out, looked at it, and slid it back in for another 30 seconds to make sure it was done properly. Little stuff like that is impressive. He could have shuffled me through and the slice would have been good, but not as good. The dough crisped and just barely flaked when folded, but it never tore and took some bite to get through. It was chewy and sweet and the completed slice was about as thick as a cell phone.
The crust was the cherry on top of the slice. The color threw me off, but this was just like fresh bread. You can see how fluffed up it is and it piped steam when I bit through. Very impressive stuff.
For an undisclosed reason (see above), I was escorted out of the Main Place mall by officers who get an “F” review for their customer service. Jerks. Let me live, man. Apart from that, this was great! Let’s pass judgment.
Dough🥖: (A/A+) About as good as it gets for NY pie. Maybe just a touch browner.
Cheese🧀: (A) Same as above. Nothing short of excellent, but some browning would knock it out.
Sauce🥫: (A-/A) Bummed to know its origins, but you can’t deny the quality.
Pepperoni🍖: (B+) Boosted above average due to good distribution.
Gino & Joe’s scored exactly a 93% for me. It was AMAZING. I in no way expected this to be so good after my lackluster experience at Gino’s NY pizza, which I’m almost positive is unaffiliated. There is also Joe’s NY pizza which I need to hit to bat the cycle. All in all, I just might be a bigger fan of the NY style than I thought. Gino & Joe’s had every variety of pizza imaginable (one with Alfredo noodles on it) laying under the glass ready to go. Because it moved so fast, it felt almost like NYC. The guys were very friendly, but meant business and knew what they were doing. Lots of other Italian classics available as well, but when I return, which I will, it will be for the slice (purposely left unpluralized). Also, I must say downtown was beautiful today on lunch. I haven’t been in the heart of the city at that hour on such a nice day in a while. You’re lookin good, Buffalo! See you next week.