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Monday, September 15, 2008

Joe's Pizza of Bleecker St.

After I realized I couldn't say I have a pizza blog until I tried this place, I went to try it. The official name is Joe's Pizza. This of course could be confusing since Joe isn't exactly an original name. So it adds on to the name "of Bleecker St." not only for originality but to let you know that, originally this is a NY pizza place. There is another Joe's and it is on Bleecker Street in Manhattan, and also Brooklyn. So needless to say there is definitely a reputation to live up to here. It's not just boasting its New York style it boasts that it is New York.

Anyway, I took a drive to Santa Monica, dragged my girlfriend along to help me review this pizza. It is right next to the beach, so my girlfriend was happy to come, any place that has water, she's there. Joe's is a small, brick hole in the wall. It has a constant flow of people, probably mostly tourists that were lucky enough to stumble upon the place, and some that come from far and wide specifically for this pizza, like say someone from Hollywood with a pizza blog.
I ordered the only size they have, it was big probably 18 inches maybe 21. The price was a little on the high side, 18 dollars. Slices were almost 3 dollars. It was a big pie though and I had Kelly to help me eat it, so I didn't mind. Thats the other thing thats funny there, on the menu they have the pizza listed as pies, pizza pies. Genuine New York I suppose, gotta love it.
The other pizzas looked pretty good while I waited. The basil mozzarella one, and the sicilian looked good too
Finally the pizza came out and it looked good. Now, I wish I could compare it to the Joe's in New York, but I don't recall specifically what that one tasted like. It's probably better that way, I can make a judgment based on LA pizza only.
It tasted really good. The sauce was very light and sweet tasting. The cheese was not put on heavy, but the cheese that was on it went a long way. It was stretchy and tasty. Just a little bit of oil seeping through. The flavor at first seemed a little bland, but I think that the sauce had such a good taste they didn't need to add any extra spices to it. The crust wasn't the best I've had out here. It was indeed crispy, very much so, in a good way. It lacked flavor though and just didn't seem that fresh tasting, probably because it wasn't. It ended up being a bit dry and honestly I felt the crust could have been just a touch thinner.
All in all though, the pizza had the makings of a New York style pizza for sure. It was cooked in the right way to get it crispy but not burnt, it seemed to have fresh cheese, and a great tasting sauce. The crust flavor and freshness are in question, maybe the water filter does make a difference. I have to think, in New York if I got this pie what would I think? A good New York slice of pizza ? Good yes, maybe not the best. The best might be the original on Bleecker.

UPDATE: Joe's has since opened a 4th place in West Hollywood on the Sunset Strip. It replaced the less than a year old Cristoni pizza that wasn't too bad itself. It is the same pizza as the one in Santa Monica. Joe himself was there to make sure things ran smoothly. This time I got the fresh Mozz and basil one. It was pretty delicious. I ate almost 3/4 of the 18 inch pizza. Overdose. The fresh basil and cheese make all the difference. It was awesome, Im glad to have this place close by. The crust was the same, extremely crispy and a little dry, with not too much doughiness to it. But overall pretty damn good.

111 Broadway Santa Monica (310-395-9222)
8539 Sunset Blvd. West Hollywood (310-358-0900)
Bleecker St. Manhattan, NY
Price: $$


  1. you should check out garage pizza on sunset, in the evenings preferably. i hear they have a good whole pie (i've only had a slice)

  2. glad we managed to arm-wrestle you into going to Joe's ;) -- OK not really, but nice that you're finally able to try.

    I'm still in search of a good deep dish myself in the LA/OC area, was told to give Tony's in Placentia a try; have yet to make the journey.

  3. Every day that I wake up in LA I have the warm rush of relief that moving from NY was all just a bad dream, only to be struck in the face a second later with the realization that, no, it all really happened and I'm in fact waking up in Sherman Oaks. For the most part I don't mind - the weather's nice, I get to go to the beach without snowpants, and people look more like cute pets - but when I want to eat pizza, I wish I were anywhere else. Or dead. People that I (used to) trust would encourage me to try places like Mulberry street with apocryphal claims that they ship their water from New York or places with names like "Johnnie's" or "Frankie's" because, hey, Italian immigrant names = good pizza. None could even hold a candle to some of the more mediocre pizza I'd eaten. I've learned to eat CPK, but I don't know how long I can keep that up. I had given up completely, opting when I wanted to eat pizza to order Domino's and then promptly throw it in the trash uneaten, crying.

    Then I found your blog while accidentally looking for the number to a pizza place. My eyes have been opened. My life is changed. I wish that I were being facetious, but finding your blog is actually probably the best thing that's happened to me in my recent life. The fact that Joe's is out here now makes every day worth living. I would eat pizza for every meal of every day, and now, thanks to you, I can. Thank you. Thank you.

  4. I'm kind of unimpressed with your blaugh. Your writing is bland like most of the za that you write about liking. Joes by the way is run by the same family as the ny one though it is a nephew or uncle. I don't know exactly but of course I don't have a blaugh that makes me a self proclaimed expert. You should dp your due diligence. Not to mention you write "Finally the pizza came out and it looked good. Now, I wish I could compare it to the Joe's in New York, but I don't recall specifically what that one tasted like." this is an absurd statement on so many levels. There were two joes on 6th/bleeker area. If you don't know what they taste like how in the world can you suggest you are looking for pizza that compares to east coast pizza. That's like having never eaten a cheesesteak in Philly and trying to judge la cheesesteaks. Anyways I don't trust your reviews. Many are wrong though this one I feel was so off that u had to respond. Often you write about generous sauce on pizza. Generous is not a good term for sauce on east coast pizza. Maybe I will start a blaugh about reviewing your bad reviews. Nah, not everyone who slightly likes something needs to publish what they think for all the world to see.

  5. I drove to Joe's to try their New york Pizza , well their was no taste ABSOLUTELY NOT NEW YORK , SORRY, i'M FROM bROOKLYN,ANOTHER PIZZA PLACE BITES THE DUST

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