In recent years, a new culture has developed around pizza: “It’s scrutinized and fetishized, with a Palin-esque power to polarize,” writes Frank Bruni in the New York Times. That means debates over oven types, varieties of flour, the virtues of buffalo mozzarella. The new “stratosphere of respect” for the pies is reflected in countless classy new restaurants that have sprung up all over New York.
“The flashiest restaurateurs want in on pizza; so do some of the most classically trained, critically acclaimed chefs,” Bruni notes. Why pizza? “The economy the way it is, pizza’s perfect,” said one restaurateur. For him, it’s “less money, less pressure. You’re concentrating on one thing rather than sous-chefs and pastry chefs.” And the trend is easier on critics’ pockets, too, as they search for the right ambiance and the perfect crust.