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about apizza

What is New Haven style pizza?

New Haven style pizza is one of the least famous styles of pizza, but is just as distinct from regular "delivery pizza" as Chicago style, New York style, Greek pizza, or California style, among many others. It is known as APIZZA, which is pronounced "ah-BEETZ."

There are three main things that set APIZZA apart from regular pizza.

The first thing is the crust. Because of the way it is made, it turns out crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.

The second thing is the ingredients. Overall, APIZZA has fresh, simple ingredients.

The third thing is the presentation. Pizza has become a gourmet food. These days, premium-priced "individual-sized" pizzas are de rigeur. Exotic toppings and combinations never heard of before Y2K fill the menu. And it can seem that the decor in many new pizza restaurants has become more important than the food. Not in New Haven, though.

What New Haven pizza is NOT

While it is not a very well-known style of pizza, there are may people who know the style, and with that, there are a few misconceptions about New Haven style pizza. Among them:

COAL. It is not "New Haven style" just because it is coal fired. And New Haven style does not by any means HAVE to be coal fired. The most famous New Haven pizzerias, including Frank Pepe's and Sally's, use coal fired ovens for their heat source. This makes for a really amazing pizza. But those two legendary stores were grandfathered in: coal is no longer a legal heat source under most city building codes, including New Haven and Washington DC.

But as noted above in the section about crust, the most important thing about getting New Haven pizza right is preparing the dough a particular way, and applying the heat source to the top and the bottom of the pie in the right way. Whether it's coal, wood, or gas that provides the heat, the source is not the most important factor. You can get plenty of soggy pizzas that were cooked in a wood-fired brick oven.

New York. Ah, New York. Frank Sinatra used to send a driver up to New Haven to get a pizza from Sally's whenever he was performing in New York City. New Haven style pizza is not New York style pizza, and it is not a derivative of New York style pizza.