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What's the difference between a good pizza and a great pizza?

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Just about any pizza (except for the one I tried in Saizeria) can be classified as "good" just because they're hot and cheesy. But the greatest pizza I've ever eaten was many years ago, and I still remembered it as soon as I read this headline - A deep-dish "Chicago" style pizza. It was rectangular instead of round. It was so loaded with toppings, and the crust was so thick that I could only manage to eat two slices, even though I was really hungry.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"Great" would describe most pizzas not sold in Japan.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Good pizza - can be found in a few select locations in Japan. Great pizza - can't.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Quality ingredients: cheese, sauce and dough. I know of only a few establishments in Tokyo that can compete with the best I've encountered in the US (in the NY area). Otherwise, it's more of an interpretation of pizza to satisfy local Japanese tastes.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Pizza is Italian NOT american so what is it with all the American comparisons?

I can assure you that proper Italian pizza is different and has various styles Roma, Napoli, etc. Never seen a pan fried or thick crust pizza there.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

It"s ME - Sicilian pizza often has a thick crust, and this is traditional, although the U.S. version is significantly thicker than the Sicilian version. I've never seen pan-fried pizza in Italy myself, but Jamie Oliver claims he had it in Panzano in the Chianti region.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Granted that but where outside the USA can you get NY, Chicago or Californian pizza at an traditional restaurant?

I don't see London, Paris, etc style pizza being offered.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

It's the crust, really. Japanese pizzerias can never seem to get the crust quite right...

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Any pizza after ten pm and half a dozen beers is great. Before that, with fewer beers, it's usually just good.

6 ( +5 / -0 )

Tokyo has dozens and dozens of restaurants with authentic Italian pizza (and lots of craptacular stuff, too) but very few New York-style and literally 2 Chicago-sytle places. Anyone dissing America pizza has never eaten real New York-style or Chicago deep dish - they're very different than Italian but damn good. I often make pizza at home from scratch and it is cheaper and much better than anything that could be delivered here. Really doesn't take that much time either, once the dough rises. Not a gourmet but I did grow up next to NYC in Joisey and have lived in Rome and then Chicago as an adult. There are incredible pizzas in all three places but they are very different.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Just about any pizza (except for the one I tried in Saizeria) can be classified as "good"

For 399 yen, I have no complaints!

I have found the quality is getting better here - more little Italian places with wood fire ovens who do a nice plain pizza. I still haven't a clue why pizza is so damn expensive in this country.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

I'm not really fussy. I just don't want corn, potato, and mayo on my pizza. Is that so much to ask for?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Anchovies!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

No mayonnaise.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Here:

http://tabelog.com/chiba/A1207/A120704/12020899/

You can find great pizza (yes it's down in the tip of Boso Peninsula, but worth the drive). Not surprisingly it has only 3 stars on this web-site - japanese people are way too much used to the crap sold by he take outs and big chain stores...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Pizza is Italian NOT american so what is it with all the American comparisons?

I can assure you that proper Italian pizza is different and has various styles Roma, Napoli, etc. Never seen a pan fried or thick crust pizza there.

Indeed! I'm Italian, and what the Americans call pizza - their version of pizza - is something horrible for us Italians. No offence, but don't act like if pizza was an American dish and you can judge other countries version of pizza by using your own version as term of comparison. =.=

4 ( +6 / -2 )

"Pizza is Italian NOT american so what is it with all the American comparisons?"

According to Wiki: "The story of how pizza became more than a peasant's food goes as follows. A popular urban legend holds that the archetypal pizza, Pizza Margherita, was invented in 1889,..."

And then: "Pizza migrated to America with the Italians. The first U.S. pizzeria opened in 1905 in New York City."

So there IS a connection between Italian and American pizza. And I wasn't only referring to "New York Style" pizza. For a margherita very few pizzerias in Tokyo use real buffalo mozzarella or extra virgin olive oil. I'll stand by my comment.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Good crust. Anchovies. good quality cheese. Spuicy sausage also a winner.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Not sloppy or soggy. Crisp, thin base. Hot (initially).

1 ( +1 / -0 )

without a doubt, the quality of a pizza can be defined in the quality of the crust. Cheese, melted doesn't really have that much difference in quality, same goes for the sauce (basically) toppings are too variable. In a pure sense, if the dough is crafted and baked in a quality way, that creates a high probability for the pizza to be great! (Doesnt guarantee it though, 'specially here)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Best pizza is the one that are made from the original makers. The Koreans invented pizza. It is the best! http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=KiLA6Bk_ivs. Good pizzas are that of Italy's and the U.S. .

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

What makes a pizza great? That's easy, the cheese baby, the cheese!

Oh yeah, hold the egg/mayo/corn/potatoes and any other of those insanities!

I could go for a good ole pizza from Lombardi's, today. Oh well, will have to make one myself!

As for the Korean claim, Mr Pizza's campaign was a stroke of genius. I really wonder how many people actually fell for it?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

One of the best pizzas I ever had was from a mountain top cafe with a wood-fired stove -- in Gunma.

So there you go.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Great pizza can be enjoyed cold straight from the fridge the next day, magically whisking away your hangover and leaving you fit to join the human race again.

Merely "good" pizza will be a manky soggy mess or an explosion of crumbs.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

As long as they don't put forbidden crap (mayo corn etc) it is acceptable. There is nothing like a SLICE in NYC!! Talk about great. The best pizza I ever had was a kosher slice in a dairy restaurant in midtown NYC.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Simplicity.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Pizza that most of the world is familiar with, is based on Italian-American pizza. Native Italian pizza is different.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Pizza is Italian NOT american so what is it with all the American comparisons?

We invented the car, but that doesn't mean, we make the best cars. This is silly Kindergarden talk. Just because a country invented something it doesn't mean that that country makes that particular item better. Second, taste is something subjective, it it tastes good, then why NOT. Third,

I can assure you that proper Italian pizza is different and has various styles Roma, Napoli, etc. Never seen a pan fried or thick crust pizza there.

That is, when you are talking about Italian Napolese, Roma Pizza, you are talking about these native original classics. Italy doesn't hold the patent to making the best pizza or the only country that is allowed to make pizza, but as the largest consumer of eating pizza, we do know what we are talking about. Personally, I don't compare the two, I see them both as individuals and I love NY pizza for what it is. I'm from California where we don't have a pizza culture, so every time I visit NY, I can't wait to indulge in some awesome pizza. When I'm in Italy, I want to eat some of the best. But this whole nationality of, I made this, I made that has got to stop. If people compare the two, obviously there is a reason. Like it or not, Italy has to compete with NY if you don't like it, tell the millions of New Yorkers they are wrong. Remember, tastes are subjective.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Middle eastern flatbread base, any old passata, some fresh mozzarella, a few mushrooms, onions and peppers, grated chedder cheese on top and in the oven. All done in 15 minutes. Now thats a great pizza.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

@bass4funk - calm down. I read the question as what's the difference between a good pizza and a great pizza. That means it is an opinion PLUS This in the Have Your Say section.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Crispy base. And without mayo on it - shock, horror!

The worst pizza I have ever eaten was from A*'s. Had meatballs in the crust and they were just revolting! I can't work out how they came up with that taste combination. Best one I had in Japan was from D****'s.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I would have to agree with anyone who says it's subjective. You like what you like, whether it's a taste you grew up with, or whether it's something you stumbled across in your journeys. If you like it, you will of course have a preference towards it. Previously I would have said there is no such thing as a bad pizza. I'm reasonably open minded and don't mind experiencing new things. However... I once had a pizza in Ohio that ruined my theory on pizza. It was a heavy thick crust, almost like Texas toast, very little in way of sauce, cheese that was collecting ponds of it's own grease, and sausage that reminded me of Jimmy Deans pork breakfast sausage(typically heavily seasoned w/ black pepper). It was the most disgusting pizza I had ever had in my life. And it continued to remind me of it's nastiness every hour or so, as I continued to reach for the antacid, and pray forgiveness for my ignorance in selecting it as a meal. A few years later I had a similar experience at a Sbarros in New York. Which leads me to believe someone had borrowed the recipe for disaster from the other.

Good pizza is easy for me to find, since all I usually look to do is fill the gaping maw that is my stomach. If it doesn't make me wish I had never eaten it, then it's good pizza. Domino's, Little Caesars, Papa Johns, Pizza hut, all fall into this category. Are there pizzas I avoid from these establishments? Sure, but I can always order the pie I want, and fill my stomach.

Great pizza is much harder to find, and is very much a subjective matter. Tastes tend to be regional, having grown up in the Chicagoland area, I have a regional taste. Italian sausage from Chicago is just like Italian sausage from anywhere else, meaning... It isn't the same as anywhere else. Even in Italy sausages are different based upon regions, even if they may go by the same names. Same thing goes regarding cheeses and sauces, they may be similar, and yet may have just a pinch of something more, or less, that alters it a bit.

The hands down best pizza I've ever had came from a steakhouse run by Italians. It was a revelation. I ordered a thin crust cheese and sausage, and it blew me away. The crust was almost like a saltine cracker, light and airy, with a heavenly crispy crunch to it. I actually worried it would crumble to bits with the first few bites, but it didn't. The sauce had a hearty tomato flavor, without the accompanying acidity you might usually find. Good gooey mozzarella, no pools of grease, plenty of flavor. And the sausage was of the type I'd come to know and love from the Chicago area, no grease, well seasoned, and balanced. This was a pizza of the gods. All in all, I would say the balance of the toppings to the crust was perfect, someone had used care putting this in front of me.

So I guess the difference between good pizza, and great pizza, would be that you can eat good pizza... While you savor great pizza. Good pizza fills you up, and doesn't let you down. Great pizza is an experience.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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