19 US Highway 46 W, Lodi, NJ
The search for the best pizza in New Jersey never ends. Recently I received two separate recommendations to try the Sicilian-style pies at Lodi Pizza from both Carlo Bartolomeo and Paulie Vitamia, two hardcore Italian foodies who I seriously respect. This alone is enough to pique my interest in a place, and I had to try the pizza immediately. Firstly, because both these guys are seriously quality oriented and know their food, and secondly, because I hadn’t tried a Sicilian pie I liked on this side of the Hudson yet. Until now.
The Lodi Pizza sign on Rt 46 in Lodi cannot be missed, even in crappy weather. Click on the “Read the rest of this entry” link below for more.
Lodi Pizza opened in 1969 and is a complete throw-back to another time. The building and interior looks like it hasn’t changed a bit since its very first day in business.
Lodi is not a modern Pizza place by any means, trying to pretend it makes old school Pizza. It -IS- old school Pizza.
The Bari steel decks at Lodi operate between 565 and 600 degrees. One thing they do differently here is that both the round and Sicilian pizzas are cooked in pans rather than touch the ovens directly because raw ingredients such as fresh sausage are used as toppings and must cook thoroughly. All the pies come out well-done, which is how it should be for this type of a pizza.
A pepperoni pie straight from the oven.
Lodi Pizza was used as a film location for Season 3 of The Sopranos where the character “Ralphie Cifaretto” (Played by actor and native Jersey Boy Joe Pantoliano) was introduced. Remember Ralphie and his pet horsie? That didn’t end too well.
Lodi Pizza is also endorsed by the Chairman of the Board himself.
Slicing up some Sicilians.
Sicilian pies are the specialty of Lodi Pizza. Here a Pizza Bianca (no sauce) with onions and olive oil is being prepared.
Pizza Bianca closeup
Sauce simmering in the pot.
Meatballs awaiting their fate.
At a lot of Pizza places bread is an afterthought — but not at Lodi. The bread is fresh, nice and crusty, and went great with the antipasto salad. We liked it so much we left most of it over and took it home so we could make sandwiches with it the next day.
The calzones at Lodi are truly awesome, and are similar to the kind you can get at Pizza Town in Elmwood Park.
Per Carlo and Paulie’s recommendations, we ordered the Sicilian pie, with fresh sausage.
Side profile. Lodi’s Sicilian pie is considerably thinner than most other square pies sold in the NY/NJ metro area. Because it is cooked in a pan, the crust is more reminiscent of a focaccia than a traditional NY-style Sicilian pizza, but it is still excellent nonetheless. The sausage was wonderful and its juices really permeated the flavor of the sauce and cheese. A top quality pizza that I recommend heartily.