Author Topic: Paulie Gee  (Read 5042 times)

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Offline forzaroma

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Paulie Gee
« on: February 24, 2011, 04:28:01 PM »
Me and the wife went to Paulie gee's on tuesday and what an experience we had. we ate 5 pies and they were all great. Not only great food but Paulie came and sat with us for a bit and we spoke about ovens and doughs for a while. even gave us some limoncello on the house.. He even said if I ever need anything to call him. 4 stars.


Offline dmcavanagh

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #1 on: February 24, 2011, 05:15:35 PM »
Nice review, Paulie Gee's is on my TO DO list.

Offline fritznewton

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #2 on: February 24, 2011, 06:08:42 PM »
Me and the wife went to Paulie gee's on tuesday and what an experience we had. we ate 5 pies and they were all great. Not only great food but Paulie came and sat with us for a bit and we spoke about ovens and doughs for a while. even gave us some limoncello on the house.. He even said if I ever need anything to call him. 4 stars.

Did you try any of Mike's Hot Honey while you were there?  If so, what did you think?

What pies did you get?  Any standout of the 5?

Offline forzaroma

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2011, 06:20:24 PM »
Did you try any of Mike's Hot Honey while you were there?  If so, what did you think?

What pies did you get?  Any standout of the 5?

Obviouslywe wanted to try them all but we couldnt too many for just 2 of us. We tried Regina, arugala shmoogala, ricotta pie and greenpointer then a nutella bananas one. Fave was the greenpointer and next time which will be soon I will try more.

Offline pizzablogger

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2011, 07:51:49 PM »
Forza, I'm thrilled you had the opportunity to go to PG's place, eat his pies and to have a chance to meet the man himself. Paulie is off the hook.

Was his son Derek (Delboy) on the sticks when you were there?

The Limoncello is always nice there....even though he took everything he knows about it from me!  :P
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

Offline forzaroma

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2011, 07:59:22 PM »
Yeah he was on the stove but didnt get to meet him. Limoncello was great and the whoe experience was awesome as well. He said to me and the wife wat ur gonna eat 3 pies I said no im gonna eat 4 lol.

Offline pennygirl

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2011, 08:06:09 PM »
Has anyone figured out what tomatoes Paulie is using yet? I remember there was a video of him addressing his secret cans which weren't necessarily San Marzanos. 

Offline PizzaPolice

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2011, 11:34:55 AM »
Mmmm!



Quote
The Limoncello is always nice there....even though he took everything he knows about it from me!



Anything you care to share?  Or do we have learn it in the back alleys just like...


                                                   ....  gelato.


Offline PapaJon

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2011, 02:57:18 PM »
Very cool, I just got back from a two day business trip to NY/NJ area and Paulie Gee's was the first place I visited strait from the airport.  

That place has a really funky entrance that makes it look closed or not in business.  When I drove by I almost didn't see the dimly lit tinny sign or I might have wandered around without finding it.  Even after finding it, I called in before parking because as far as I could tell they had either moved or were closed up.  After confirming they were open and that I was at the right address, I found parking and walked back and still had trouble finding the entrance.  Their silly sign is more above a side door which is locked and has a doorbell (I rang this to no answer by the way :P)  until I noticed a tiny sign on the large barn door(s) a little to the left which read "push to open" or something like that.  Inside was a busy, warm, and lively interior which made you feel a little like Alice in wonderland or part of a secret society or something.

I requested to sit near the oven and was seated at the end of a long table closest to the prep station.  It was very interesting to watch, there were 3 young guys looking in their 20's or possibly early 30's stretching and dressing the dough and managing the oven.  They were busy and seemed to flow easily around each other even in a fairly tight work bench.  I also noticed that all three of them were launching pies or manning the oven at one time or another without any noticeable "shift change", they acted much like a single pizza making machine each aware of what the other was doing and quite fascinating to watch.  There was also one girl who was at the end of the prep station who would add finishing touches and slice the pies as they came out of the oven.

To be honest this was my first experience in this type of a pizza parlor, and so I ordered what I thought to be the simplest pie on the menu the Mootz (Fier di Latte, Chopped Fresh Garlic, Percerino Romano, Olive Oil, & Fresh Basil) a white pie.  Perhaps my expectations were set a little too high, but to be honest I was a bit disappointed.  To me I felt the pie was a slight bit undercooked, the lighting inside is dim at best so it was hard to get a good visual, but it seemed as if the dough was still slightly raw directly under the cheese.  Perhaps this is how it is supposed to be, or maybe it was the slight rubbery texture of the cheese that was confusing me.  It also seemed to lacked the oven spring I was, possibly wrongly, expecting to be there.  The charring seemed ok, but perhaps since I believed it slightly undercooked I felt that it could have been a little more charred at least on the bottom.

To my embarrassment I couldn't hide to my waiter that I was a tad underwhelmed and I don't know if he told someone or if I just got a random visit, but an older gentleman in a plaid flannel shirt came up and asked how my pizza was and silly me gave a rough accounting of my above comments.  To my dismay I soon found out I was speaking to Paulie Gee himself.  :o  Knowing good and well that my assessments are opinions of a novice at best I was ashamed to have possibly insulted someone I would have to say I admire for what they have accomplished.  Paulie was actually very gracious and went out of his way to say he really appreciate the candid and honest response which he said most people would not even think to give.  He offered to bake me another pie which in hindsight I stupidly declined (I originally had planned to visiit Johnny's in Mt. Vernon that night as well.  That didn’t pan out due to their closing time).  Paulie did bring out some of his home made Lemoncello for me on the house which he said was extra special as it was made from some rare Serrento Lemons which a friend of his had given him.  He said I was the first guest to try this batch, and it was very very good.

After talking with him more and looking at the char on the bottom he agreed it could maybe have used a few more seconds in the oven, but he said it was a fairly good representation of how their pies looked.  When asked he said they generally bake for around 75 seconds.

Overall it was a great experience.  We talked for some time and I told him I baked my own at home and even showed him a couple quick pictures on my iPhone.  He also asked if I liked a thin crackery crust although we had not talked about this and when I said I did, he recommended Joe & Pat’s over on Staten Island and went on to show some of his own pictures of their pizza from his iPhone.

When I manage to get back to Paulie Gee’s, I will try to request a standard margarita as well as try their greenpoint.   Now that my expectations may be better aligned with the product I may have an even better experience.

As I mentioned it was pretty dimly lit and I felt a little odd taking pictures so what I did take are kind of hard to make out, especially the ones for the prep area.  The top char from the pictures (taken with flash) seems to me now to be more burnt than I remember, but again the lighting…

P.S.  Paulie Gee’s son was one of the three guys “manning the sticks”  
« Last Edit: February 25, 2011, 03:07:50 PM by PapaJon »
Jon

Offline pizzablogger

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2011, 03:28:48 PM »
Has anyone figured out what tomatoes Paulie is using yet? I remember there was a video of him addressing his secret cans which weren't necessarily San Marzanos.  

They are not San Marzanos.
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell


Offline forzaroma

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2011, 03:32:43 PM »
I loved it all I think your mistake was only ordering 1 pie.

Offline PapaJon

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2011, 03:35:31 PM »
BTW how long did it take for your order to get to you?  I think I waited 20-25 min.  Like I said though I was right next to the prep area and they were in constant motion.  I'm slightly betting the waiter didn't enter it into their system right away.
Jon

Offline forzaroma

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2011, 03:39:53 PM »
Maybe 10 minutes

Offline scott r

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #13 on: February 26, 2011, 07:21:54 AM »
To me that pizza actually looks right on for neapolitan style pizza.  The oven was definitely hot!   I'll bet your pie would have gone over like gangbusters in Naples, as what you are describing is pretty much the expected outcome with a bake time close to 1 minute.   It does look like the oven floor was a tiny bit too cool, but in the end..... I want to try pauly g's from your pics!   

Offline scott123

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #14 on: February 26, 2011, 08:22:09 AM »
2 out of 2 Scott's surveyed consider that particular pizza to be representational of Neapolitan style  :)

Jon, I'm just going to throw this out there, but, do you think there's a chance that you might not actually like Neapolitan pizza?  >:D

I totally missed it the first time, but, after re-reading the review, it just occurred to me that here you are eating pizza in a pizzeria and the owner is showing you pictures of pizza from another place- and recommending that you try it! We all know that Paulie Gee is a great guy, but how many pizzeria owners are going to recommend other pizzerias to their customers?  That is a serious love for the slice.

Fantastic review, Jon. I look forward to the others.

Offline dellavecchia

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #15 on: February 26, 2011, 08:30:40 AM »
That pie looks delicious - very neapolitan, if a bit overdone on top. The floor was not hot enough, but the pie nearly burned on top. That is an SF oven, so I would have expected a better heat distribution - it goes to show you are only as good as your fire management skills.

John

Offline scott r

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #16 on: February 27, 2011, 10:32:51 AM »
2 out of 2 Scott's surveyed consider that particular pizza to be representational of Neapolitan style  :)

Jon, I'm just going to throw this out there, but, do you think there's a chance that you might not actually like Neapolitan pizza?  >:D




I was thinking the same thing.   I also think that many americans don't love the super high temp versions of neapolitan pizza because it can be wet, slightly undercooked, and have no crisp to it whatsoever due to those really hot bakes, and a margin of error of just a few seconds of too much or not enough time in the oven.   For the italians the freshness you taste with the flash baked ingredients is well worth the tradeoff, but I wonder if many americans just aren't programmed to appreciate this as much.  I wish I could post the email jeff varasano sent me after his visit to Naples.    It really was an eye opener for me to the fact that the really fast ovens in that town produce something that is just not for everyone.   

Offline PapaJon

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #17 on: February 27, 2011, 12:54:27 PM »
2 out of 2 Scott's surveyed consider that particular pizza to be representational of Neapolitan style  :)

Jon, I'm just going to throw this out there, but, do you think there's a chance that you might not actually like Neapolitan pizza?  >:D
Perhaps, but I will not give up on myself yet though.

Now that my expectations may be better aligned with the product I may have an even better experience.
I seriously think this is key.  I did not dislike the pizza I had, but undeniably my expectations were off.  With everyones comments I think I will be more properly aligned with reality the next time I have a true Neapolitan.

P.S. I edited profile to add a "?" next to neapolitan  ;)
Jon

Offline scott123

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #18 on: February 27, 2011, 01:32:51 PM »
I also think that many americans don't love the super high temp versions of neapolitan pizza because it can be wet, slightly undercooked, and have no crisp to it whatsoever due to those really hot bakes, and a margin of error of just a few seconds of too much or not enough time in the oven.

I think that's a part of it, but I think char is the primary reason.  Char, as I mentioned in the other thread, like expresso and whiskey, contains burnt bitter alkaloid compounds that humans are hardwired to reject. It's an acquired taste, and, generally speaking, American's with their milk and two sugar coffees have far less sophisticated palates than expresso pounding Italians. I'm a wimpy, a little coffee with my milk kind of guy, myself, so I can definitely understand the GBD infatuation and char revulsion. I grew up with an almost white crust with a tiny amount of char, so I'm fine with some (and really generally avoid GBD), but Neapolitan is almost always too much char for me.

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Paulie Gee
« Reply #19 on: February 27, 2011, 04:21:43 PM »
I think that's a part of it, but I think char is the primary reason.  Char, as I mentioned in the other thread, like expresso and whiskey, contains burnt bitter alkaloid compounds that humans are hardwired to reject. It's an acquired taste, and, generally speaking, American's with their milk and two sugar coffees have far less sophisticated palates than expresso pounding Italians. I'm a wimpy, a little coffee with my milk kind of guy, myself, so I can definitely understand the GBD infatuation and char revulsion. I grew up with an almost white crust with a tiny amount of char, so I'm fine with some (and really generally avoid GBD), but Neapolitan is almost always too much char for me.

I don't know if we are hardwired as humans to reject char, or if some of us are hardwired to like it and some not, or if liking it is a function of how you are brought up. Maybe the latter, but I wouldn't bet on it.  I like everything I can think of with char - all the things you mentioned plus red wine, a black and blue steak, you name it. My kids are the exact same way, and so is my dad. The reason I think there may also be a genetic disposition in certain people to like char is because I don't just like it, I crave it the same way I crave fried food. When I smell either, it is like a switch flips in my mind and I get hungry. My kids - from their earliest days - never ever rejected any food that derived flavor from char and they have had a wide swath to try.

I can take or leave GBD, but I am addictivly drawn to Neapolitan.

Craig
Pizza is not bread.


 

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