Our First Taste of Pizza by Cer Te
Midtown is in desperate need of a lot of things, and good pizza is definitely at the top of that list. This is New York, bad pizza is unacceptable, and unfortunately we have a glut of it. I haven’t exactly been hiding my love for the sandwiches at Cer Te (55th btw. 5+6th), so to say I was excited about their “green” take-out pizzeria, Pizza by Cer Te (on 56th btw. Lex+Park) would be an understatement. I’d been studying the menu since it came out, particularly curious about the “bakers” and the “ciagels,” but since I was going for lunch I could only get the answer for one of these creations (ciagels are on the breakfast menu.) Having a low environmental impact is good and all (I’ll admit the plant walls are pretty cool) but we want awesome tasting pizza and we want it now!
I was there to survey the scene and eat some pizza on opening day last Thursday. Though I looked at the toppings menu-all of the combinations sound delicious-I went with the standards: a Margherita slice and a Pomodoro Baker. If you don’t make a good regular slice, you’re pretty much out of my book no matter how many delicious toppings you pile on. The Margherita consists of fresh tomato sauce, covered with slices of fresh mozzarella; sadly the formerly high $2.50 price tag is average these days, so it’s tough to complain. And after the first bite the price didn’t even matter, I was in pizza heaven. The sauce is awesome, slightly acidic from the tomatoes, not too sweet, while the cheese is perfectly melted and very high quality-no rubbery mozzarella here.
The crust has a good char and is strong enough to support the toppings without being too thick. I know it’s early but I’m tempted to nominate this as the best slice in Midtown, and from the comments last week, I’d say I’m not alone in this notion.
The Bakers are apparently thin crust Sicilians with the cheese below the sauce, similar to Grandma slices (I dare say it is a Grandma slice?). But unlike most Grandmas I’ve had, this one was actually good. The crust is the same as the regular pie, crunchy with a bit of chewy inside, and strong. But like its direct opposite slice, the cheese and sauce won my over on this one. Basically for an extra 45¢ you are you getting your slice inverted and square-either way, it’s delicious. The quality of the products on both slices reminded me of high-brow pizza places that I love to eat at, but hate paying for.
Now my lunching companion felt the need to buck the usual pizza system, and go for the vegan personal pie. Instead of sauce, there’s hummus and it’s topped with mushrooms and peppers, and from what she told me, it was pretty awesome- even if it is on the “healthy side”. Besides the vegan pizza (which my token office vegan was excited to hear about), they also offer a selection for our gluten-free Midtowners. At $9.75, getting a 10″ personal may be a bit too expensive for me, but for those of you with big appetites, this might be the way to go.
As of today, they’ve started their delivery service with the same boundaries as the regular Cer Te. If any of you have tried the ciagels, let us know in the comments.
The + (What somebody who likes this place would say)
- One of the few high-brow pizza places in Midtown that offers by-the-slice.
- For $2.50, you can get a slice made with fresh mozzarella, fresh sauce, and awesome crust
- It’s environmentally friendly! Save the Earth by eating pizza!
- It’s quite possibly one of the best slices around
The – (What somebody who doesn’t like this place would say)
- I refuse to pay over $2 for a slice-I don’t care if my cheese is rubbery
- Where am I eating this? There’s no place to sit!
- They use herbs that they grow on their walls with NYC’s acid rain? What is this, California?!
- Vegan pizza is an abomination on all things good and holy.
Pizza by Cer Te, 132 East 56th (btw. Park+Lex) (212) 813-2020