I enjoy a GOOD pizza surprise – you’re driving through an area you don’t usually frequent, you see a pizza place you’ve never heard of with an “OPEN” sign in the window, and you make in impulsive decision to check it out. And it is really good! This is what happened recently at lunchtime, and the happy surprise was Pie Shack on the corner of Erie Blvd. W. and Willis Ave. Many people would probably think of this as Solvay, but the map indicates it is just barely on the Syracuse side of the border, literally a stone’s throw from Solvay.
Another happy surprise is that I arrived shortly after the pizza came out of the oven. My cheese slice was 1/8th of an 18″ pie ($1.65 incl. tax). I have to say this carefully because I have limited experience with true NY City pizza, but this was what I consider to be a “classic” NY style thin crust. The crust was very thin, crispy, foldable, not chewy, with a good rise, good interior structure, and very brown bottom.
Sauce was very good – moist & fresh, with a mild tomato flavor, light spice load, a small amount of visible spice flakes, and a touch of garlic. The cheese was not oily or salty, and smooth tasting with no “off” notes. You can see in the picture that the cheese was not over-applied – you can actually see the sauce.
Overall, the balance of crust, sauce and cheese was excellent, and it made my taste buds very happy. The Pizza Geek highly recommends it. This was one of those occasions when I wished I had a second slice, or a third – thin crust pizza like this goes down so easily. Thinking back to the few other highly rated pizzas I’ve had so far, this one compares quite favorably. I’ll give it 4.5 slices out of 5.
UPDATE (Sep 9, 2011) – A little while ago we got a couple of pizzas for the office, and they weren’t as good. VERY skimpy on the toppings, and the wonderful flavor I experienced with the slice wasn’t there. The sauce was dried out somewhat. I’m dropping the rating to 4.0.
Summary – Pros: excellent balance of flavors. Cons: too far from my office.
What do you think? Have you tried the pizza from the Pie Shack? Click the comment link below and let us know.