Dear Pizza Eaters,
We make ordering as easy as pie, but, sometimes, eating pizza with friends and family results in some tough choices.
Don’t worry, “Hey Slice” is here to deliver answers to all of your most pressing etiquette queries and concerns.
Without further adieu, let’s dig in:
HEY SLICE: I can’t get enough of pineapple pizza. I’ve been thinking about stepping out of the pineapple realm and trying new fruits to top my pizzas, but I’m fearful. What are the right fruits for me? And what will my local shop think of my order? — FORBIDDEN FRUITS?
HEY FRUITS: We empathize with your situation. When dealing with personal crises such as these, daily affirmations can bolster confidence in your convictions.
A Navy SEAL’s mantra is, “Slow is smooth, smooth is fast.” From now on, when you face the mirror in the morning, we want you to say, “Pizzas are pies, pies have fruit.” Repeat this until you have the self-assurance to order pizzas with stone fruit, with aplomb.
There are also plenty of other non-pineapple fruits already offered by your local shops that you should branch out towards. Ever have a pizza with figs and goat cheese? It’s like your cheese board and a pizza had a baby! Ditto for pears with gorgonzola and apples with cheddar.
The universe of pizza is infinite and it need not be confined to meats, herbs, root vegetables, or pineapple pieces. When it comes to fruit, try every pie that catches your eye.
HEY SLICE: You’ve profiled pizzas with pickles, tuna, and reindeer, and I didn’t even know reindeers were real before I saw that article. There was also that Japanese pizza with fermented soybeans, which sounds pretty adventurous since it has the aroma of a “bold cheese” or “sweaty feet,” depending on the nose of the beholder. I consider myself an adventurous eater, but that all sounds so crazy to me. So, what’s the strangest pizza you’ve ever eaten? — CURIOUS IN KEARNY
HEY CURIOUS: $5 Hot and Ready.
HEY SLICE: First time reader, long time eater. Please help me settle a debate – Is it ever okay to eat pizza with silverware instead of using your hands? – WHAT THE FORK
HEY WTF: This has been one of our most frequently received questions since this advice column began more than 40 years ago (Editor’s Note: This column was first published about three weeks ago.)
Both sides of the debate have merit.
The pizza proletariat argues that slices are designed to be the world’s greatest on-the-go food and should only be eaten by hand. After all, this is what launched New York City’s pizza culture – hungry workers had no time to stop and eat, nor the means to pay for an entire pie, so they asked pizzerias to slice their meal for convenience and affordability.
On the other hand, some people are too proper to pick up a slice like a Regular Joe.
Like mother always used to say: The Lord gave you two hands for a reason – one to fold your slice and the other to reach for the second slice.
At least, this is the probably the right answer when it comes to most American styles of pizza. Some pies absolutely require utensils. Ever try to eat a Chicago deep dish pizza with your bare hands? You might as well pay for your dry cleaning and your two-day stint in the burn unit before you dig into the bread basket.
Also consider that Neapolitan pizza, the pie that started it all, is served whole in Italy and is served with a fork and knife.
Just remember – New York-style pizza should be eaten by hand. Unless you just got a manicure. Or if your mitts are mummy wrapped after trying to palm deep dish.