Sal's Authentic New York Pizza
4A Commerce Street,
+64 9 379 7257
The ViewAuckland Review
I don't actually know when Sal's Authentic New York Pizza arrived in Auckland. All I know is that when I got back from a long stay in London last year, this cheeky little upstart had arrived on K Rd and you could grab pizza by the slice and eat it outside on a bar leaner with a pint. What a homecoming!
Sal's is very much a new spin on an old school New York pizzaria. Both branches are pretty much identical, decked out in exposed brick, wood and stainless steel. Both are also great to pop in with a small group of friends though Commerce St is probably the better bet for a booth.
The pizzas are massive in size, which is apt given their historical home. It's a definite 'hold high, eat low' kind of pizza that is super thin but not crumbly. My personal eating style is to fold a slice in two and have a kind of pizza sandwich. The pepperoni is great and has a lovely spicy kick to it (and along with most of the ingredients has been imported from the US). You can grab these by the slice ($5) or by the whole (18 inch starting from $24).
The other pizzas include the classic cheese, meatball, sausage and veggie varieties as well as a recent chicken addition to the menu. I've tried most of these and they're definitely up there (though the pepperoni still takes some beating).
The sides are almost better - whatever you do, grab garlic knots as a side. If they're cooked right (and I must say that sometimes mine have been underdone) they are a beautiful steaming crunchy nugget of garlic goodness. If you don't go for the pepperoni pizza but still have a craving, then the weighty pepperoni wheels are perfect to fill the gap. Be aware though that they are bigger than they look so you may not have room for much more.
One area that Sal's could scrub up on a bit is the turnaround at the counter. It does sometimes take a LONG time to get your order in even when it's not busy, something which I think could be rectified by simply taking the order then telling customers how long it will be rather than waiting around until the garlic knots have heated through before moving to the next customer. I'd maybe ring ahead if you're after something straight away.
I've heard people say that Sal's is the best pizza in Auckland. I'm not sure that's true (Toto's, Dante's and Epilito's would all be up there), but Sal's Authentic New York Pizza is still pretty damn good especially if it's the NY style of pizza you're after. It may not have massive variety, but it does have massive tasty portions and perhaps that's all that matters. And to be fair, pizza has never looked so cool.
Oh and keep an eye out for the new Takapuna store opening soon!
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Content updated: 26/05/2013 15:10