‘There is no wrong way to order at Sally’s’
Published: Thursday, August 30, 2012
Updated: Thursday, August 30, 2012 22:08
In the heart of downtown New Haven, Conn. lies the Italian food oasis known as Wooster Street. Lined with multiple Italian restaurants, there’s a good meal to be found at every corner. However, in a city filled with a rich Italian heritage, not to mention great pizzas, there is one place that stands out among them all.
Sally’s Apizza has been owned by the Consiglio family since patriarch Salvatore Consiglio founded the restaurant in 1938. In the years since, the place has become a prime location for some of New Haven’s finest pizza. Today Sal’s wife Flo and their children continue the restaurant’s enduring legacy.
The pizza itself is the star of the restaurant. What makes the pie so great is a combination of many things. Unlike most pizzerias, Sally’s ingredients are all fresh and don’t come from a can. Then there’s the sauce, which really makes the pie. It’s not too sweet and far from bitter. But perhaps the most significant feature of their pie is the crust. Wonderfully thin, but still strong enough to hold the pie together, the great crust is complimented by the slight taste from the pizzeria’s coal-fired oven. The crust isn’t burnt, nor does it taste burnt. The texture and flavor added is completely unique.
A plain pizza is a tomato pie, which consists of only sauce and dough, so make sure you order mozzarella if you want a cheese pizza. You can also get a white pizza (no sauce), with clams or other toppings.
I firmly believe that, despite multiple pizza choices, there is no wrong way to order at Sally’s. Every single pie, whether it is plain tomato sauce, everything on it, the great clam pie or their occasionally offered sliced potato white pizza, will turn out excellent. Therefore, my only recommendation is to make sure you get sausage on at least one pizza. I have no idea where they get it from, but it’s some of the tastiest Italian sausage I’ve ever had.
Sally’s knows that they have one of the finest pizzerias to be found anywhere. This fact provides some security. People come and will always come. Because of this, the menu is incredibly basic. The menu does not feature wine, salad, pasta, grinders or even table bread. They make pizza and you are expected to take it with soda, beer or water. That’s it.
The restaurant itself hasn’t been remodeled in decades. You aren’t coming to Sally’s to enjoy the atmosphere: you’re here to eat their pizza. On the wall you can see the pictures of famous athletes and celebrities who have dined at the famous eatery. Legendary singer Frank Sinatra was a recurring diner at the establishment. Other than that, the décor hasn’t been changed in decades and the tables and benches are all plain and wooden. Considering this place only serves pizza, it doesn’t really matter. Eating at Sally’s provides a nostalgic look at restaurants of yesteryear.
After numerous visits to Sally’s, as well as many other pizzerias from New York to Philadelphia, Boston and Hartford, I can say that Sally’s Apizza makes the finest pizza pie I have ever had. In a country where Pizza is among the most widely consumed dishes coast to coast, this is nothing short of an astounding accomplishment. The menu is simple and the dining room is perhaps the most humble and unassuming you could possibly imagine. But sometimes, a great restaurant doesn’t need an extensive menu, nightly specials, live music or fancy dining ware etc. All they have to do is make something better than anyone else. And Sally’s does pizza better than anyone, period.