Checking In on Harlem Pizzerias

Photo: Jeremy Sailing/Associated Press

Photo: Jeremy Sailing/Associated Press

With news of the explosion in Harlem today, I’m putting off the Julia Child post until tomorrow. Instead, I decided to call and check in on a few pizza joints in and around the Harlem area after the huge explosion happened.

New York City, for me, is the epicenter of pizza, where I learned at the corner pizza joint how to fold the slice properly and cover it with garlic powder (almost all pizzerias there have that available). I picked three at random and cold-called them to see how they were doing:

Milano Pizzeria. between 115th & 116th on 2nd Ave. “We’re OK, yes,” the manager told me. They weren’t open when the explosion happened, which is a good thing. Status: open

– Armonie. between 116th & 117th on Park Ave. This place is very close to the explosion and nobody answered – will check in on them again in a few days. Status: unknown

Sam’s Famous Pizza. between Lex & 3rd on 116th St. Constantino, the manager, was very appreciative of the call. “It was like a bomb – very, very intense,” he told me. “Our first reaction was that it was a bomb went off on the train. The police have closed down everything here and restricted it to the media.” While waiting for him to come to the phone, I overheard customers talking about the incident, too. The restaurant remains open but Constantino told me it’s been a tough day because nobody can move freely in the area. Status: open

When freak accidents like this happen, it’s really important—even more so, I’d argue—to do something good for someone, even a stranger. New York City is my hometown and I wanted to make sure my peeps are OK.

My homage to Julia Child, “Only Child II: Gorgeous Gougères,” is on tap for tomorrow. If you haven’t scored your copy of Pizza for Good yet, click over to the Buy Now page. ❐

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