My wife and I had a benefit pizza party for the Goddard Riverside Community Center, which offers housing, counseling and a place to go for the elderly and people of all ages in need in my neighborhood in New York. Forty people paid $125 a person to eat pizza at our house, so I wanted to make it special so that they would think they would get their money's worth.
Phoenix' Chris Bianco, who I think makes the best pizza in the world at his Pizzeria Bianco, sent me fifteen pizzas UPS Next Day, and the pies arrived in perfect condition. Actually, some of Chris' housemade sausage had fallen off what he calls his Wise Guy pizza (also made with smoked mozzarella and caramelized onions), but I took care of that problem by eating all the loose sausage pieces. Anthony Mangieri, who may just make the second best pizza in the world, sent up ten pies from Una Pizza Napoletana , his shop in New York's East Village. Anthony's pizza is sublime. It has a slightly lighter crust with less body, and he is such a purist he does not have toppings on his pizza other than different combinations of buffalo mozzarella, tomato sauce, and fresh cherry tomatoes.
So we had five of the pizzerias in the country represented at our apartment.
For starters my friend Mike sent over forty figs stuffed with blue cheese wrapped in prosciutto (he also sent over a salad) made in the kitchens of his contemporary Greek restaurant, Onera .
Mark Buzzio, one of the great salami and sausage makers in this country, donated platters of his incomparable salami, braesola (air-dried beef) and mortadella, made at Salumeria Biellese , his unprepossessing storefront right near Madison Garden.
For dessert we had cookies from a great baker, Yura, and amazing ice creams and sorbets from one of the country's best gelato makers, Jon Snyder of Laboratorio de Gelato .
To drink, Josh Wesson of Best Cellars sent over a case of white and red wines.
I guesss I shouldn't have worried about people not having enough to eat. I counted all the pizza slices up, and I came up with a figure approaching four hundred slices for 40 people to eat.
That's ten slices a person. I guess that's enough.
Thanks to everyone to donated their handmade food, and to everyone who forked over $125 to eat pizza with us. I think you got enough to eat. And just in case you didn't, we sent everyone home with a pizza to go.
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