It’s awfully sad the way New York’s most cherished foodstuffs and culinary traditions are, apparently, being phased out. Take, for instance, the slice-joint slice, which was all but added to the endangered species list in a grim report by the pessimists at Newsweek recently. The gist of the piece: The trend toward artisanal (or authentic Neapolitan and/or Neapolitan-ish) pizza, while fine for anyone who wants to eat a really good pie, is somehow a threat to the slice and, consequently, our very way of life. If things continue unchecked in this vein, the article suggests, it won’t be long before we’re all wandering the streets like zombies leading sliceless lives of despair. The good news is that, in spite of the Newsweek theory, the slice situation isn’t any worse than it was ten or even twenty years ago. And if you don’t buy into the myth that there was a time, not so long ago, when every street corner employed something like a close approximation of Dom DeMarco, then you might say the street-pizza situation is only getting better, having no place to go but up. As evidence of this, take a look at Kesté’s new portofolio (or wallet) pie.
Essentially a mini-margherita served from a steel warming case as a takeout lunch special, the eight-inch portable pizza is the Naples equivalent of our street slice. The proper way to eat it, as demonstrated in our slideshow, is to fold the thing in half in the manner of John Travolta’s Tony Manero, and then in half again, and then to start munching at it from the crust edge, not at the pointy tip, lest all the molten mozzarella and hot oil spill out onto your shoes. True, at $6, it’s a lot more expensive than your generic slice, but it’s infinitely more satisfying, not to mention nearly as substantial a repast as Ray’s on Sixth and 11th.