Ghigiarelli's Restaurant - Old Forge
Location: Old Forge, PA
Date: January 2013
Pizza Ordered: 6 Cut Old Forge Red
Price: $1.25 per slice/$7.50 1/2 Tray
Eat In/Take Out: Eat In
For those of you who have been reading my reviews for a while, you know that from time to time I have been known to take a lady with me on "hot dates" also known as pizza reviews. It seems that after going on several reviews with me (get ready for some sarcasm) she couldn't resist not being exclusive with me any longer. So I'm happy to announce that for this review, I headed out for a special dinner in the Pizza Capital of the World with the "First Lady of NEPA Pizza" - OK, so maybe the name needs some work but the sentiment is there and I'm not that clever! Anyway, we decided to head to Old Forge and I pulled up my reader suggestion list to find that Ghigiarelli's is the most recommended pizzeria in Old Forge that I haven't reviewed yet, plus they have an impressive storefront that I've driven by several times, so I assumed it was a good bet to take the first lady on our first official review as a couple.
When we walked into the place, we were a bit confused by the layout as there is a small hallway with no signs to direct you where to go, and no one to greet you. We looked in the bar to the right, and the dining room to the left, and there was no one there to help. We finally looked back in the kitchen and found someone who let us seat ourselves. We placed our order for a 6 cut tray and waited, and waited, and waited. To the pizza makers defense, it appeared that he was also the waiter and the bartender on this night, but it was a lengthy wait for our pizza. When the pizza finally came, I was quite impressed by the way it was prepared and baked to a nice golden brown while sparing the cheese from burning. Speaking of the cheese, I think this was a mozzarella cheese, rather than the American based blends that are at the several other Old Forge Pizza places within 2 blocks of this one. I very much liked the Mozzarella, but there wasn't anything too unique about it.
The sauce was really the thing that I enjoyed the most, and for you people who are on "onion alert" - yes there are onions in the sauce, and they are in chunks about the size of a tic tac. I personally loved the onion flavor in the sauce because it was well integrated and not overpowering. The rest of the sauce was hearty and somewhat chunky which was nice. I would have like just a bit more sauce, and about 50% more cheese, and the combination would have been perfect. Finally, the crust was a nice golden brown, medium thickness, light, fluffy, and crispy on the bottom - a.k.a. exactly as I like it! The first lady detected a buttery flavor on the crust which I presume is from a liquid butter such as Whirl. This is a clever trick, but did not go undetected by her! As we were discussing the pizza, we couldn't help but notice that the table across from us was doing the very same thing - analyzing the pizza and contrasting with the competitors down the street! I don't know if we influenced the conversation, but it was cool to hear other people analyzing their pizza as we were. I wanted to ask their opinion, but it was already creepy enough that we were listening in so we decided to have our moment of fun and enjoy the fine quality pizza.
Ghigiarelli's Restaurant Menu
Overall Taste: 4.25/5
Crispy/Cooked Properly: 4.5/5
Overall Value: 3/5
OVERALL RATING: 4/5
Similar to: Revello's, Arcaro and Genell's (but different cheese)