I spent 5 days in NY and tried two pizzas. I would like to report in. I have never been to Lombardi's but have heard so much about it. Four of us went there two nights ago. It is set up like a tourist attraction. It has magazine articles posted all over the windows and a sign that declares it to be the first pizza in the country. I was hoping for a more modesty, more sublety. We signed up for a 15 minute wait, and had a drink at the bar. The bartender was miserable, and my tip did not improve his mood.
We sat down and ordered 2 large pizzas and one small clam pizza. The waiter refused to let us order that much, because they make big pizzas. We told him we would take the left overs home, but he still refused. We gave up and ordered one large and one small.
I asked the waiter where the oven was, and he told me where to see it. I went around the corner and down and peeked into the kitchen. I could see the massive coal oven from a distance. The waiter then came by and told me I could go into the kitchen. It was very busy in there. 3 or 4 pizza makers and peel with a 6 ft handle put pizzas in the giant oven. I asked them how long it took to make pizzas and they told me it took 3 or 4 minutes. I couldn't stay long because I felt that I was getting in the way.
Our pizzas came really fast. They were big, as promised. The first thing I noticed was that the pizzas had a LOT of sauce. IMHO, sauce should be used sparingly. The crust looked good, and tasted good, but it wasn't great.
On the whole, I was dissapointed. Maybe my expectations were too high. I spend the whole evening thinking that that oven should be turning out world class pizza, not good (not great) crust with too much sauce. Sad.