They say patience is a virtue. That is especially true in a small restaurant that does not have air conditioning but instead hoarders of people. This place was so hot I thought I'd pass out and I am not a person who likes to sweat. So what's the reason for such torture?
What else, pizza?! But we are not talking about just any pizza. We are talking about Di Fara's pizza in Brooklyn, New York. As you may have noticed by now, I love pizza. I’ll try any place claiming to be the best. I was skeptical of this place because it is in my neighborhood, unassuming; it looked kind of ruin down and scary outside. Plus the wait is notoriously long. We are talking long, like they don’t answer their phone so you have to go there place your order an hour ahead, then when you get there you still have to wait anywhere for another hour or four! But finally I relented. Boy, I am eating my words now! Literally!
During the hour I waited there for my pizza to be ready I did what I do best, take photos. At first I was getting annoyed standing there sweating through my clothes on top of everyone. But as the crowd momentarily cleared out I was given a gift. I was able to get close enough to the counter to watch the master as work.
The master here is Dom DeMarco who has been in business in this location since 1965. He is the ONLY person making pizza, hence the enormously long wait. Besides Dom (I can call him that because I talked to him for a few minutes and now we are BFF), there are only two other people working there. The two employees are his daughters who take the orders and manage the chaos. I don’t know how they do it, but Dom never breaks his stride or a sweat. He is calm, cool, and collected.
After I took pictures for a while, I began to notice the extraordinary technique Dom uses. For a each pie, he goes to the back, takes out a dough (pre-shaped round or square) and lays it out. He uses olive oil, sauce, and freshly grated mozzarella cheese. Then it goes in the charcoal ovens. When Dom opens these ovens your eyes will burn so fast you cant believe it. Its like standing inside an onion while cutting it open. But as I wiped my eyes and contemplated going outside for a break, I saw the amazing part. The pizza wasn’t done! For his square pies, they come out of the oven, get more olive oil, sauce and this time fresh mozzarella cheese cut open from its bag only at the moment it is needed so that it doesn’t dry out. The packaging looked like it was freeze dried. Then the pizza goes back in the oven. I don’t know what it is about this process but makes all the difference. Its is not at all thick but it is crispy and full of fresh flavor.
The final step for Dom is placing a finished pie into its box and then grated Parmesan cheese over it. He takes a bushel of basil and cuts it with scissors over the box. That aroma in intense and was still on my clothes when I got home.
The final step for me was the taste test. The moment had finally arrived!!!! After all the hype I took my first bite, and then I was hit with a thunderbolt! This was the best pizza I ever tasted! Out of all of the places I have traveled, this pizza is definitely on the list of my top three of all time.
Dom is the f-cking king of pizza. His old school method is like nothing I've ever seen before or tasted before. This place has magic in it. The old adage: if it ain't broke, don’t fix it, certainly applies here. I think the statute of the blessed mother that stands over the olive oil is doing her job. This is pizza worth waiting for.
To check out Difara’s Pizza:
To check out how famous Dom is: