Sunday, September 06, 2020

A Slice of New York Pizza (Huntington Beach, CA)

A Slice of New York Pizza
16821 Algonquin St, Huntington Beach, CA 92649
Sun 09/06/2020, 08:10p-10:00p

A Slice of New York Pizza Exterior

September 6th was the hottest day of the year, and for some reason, the heat put me in a pizza 'n' beer sort of mood. As to the question of where to get the pizza, I settled on A Slice of New York, an ostensibly NY-inspired spot in HB. Back in 2009, I posted about the original Seal Beach location of the restaurant, which I believe was opened circa 2000 by one Behrooz Sami. This second outpost at the Huntington Harbour Mall, meanwhile, debuted in June 2012.

A Slice of New York Pizza Interior
Here we see the interior, replete with multiple TVs and sports-related items adorning the walls. The space was empty due to coronavirus, though there was outdoor seating in use.

A Slice of New York Pizza Menu: Pizza, Rolls, Pasta, Wings, Beverages A Slice of New York Pizza Menu: Salad, Side Orders
The menu's shown above. Naturally, the focus here is on the stone-baked pizzas, but there are of course the usual accompaniments of pastas, rolls, salads, and wings. Unlike the old Seal Beach restaurant, this one offers a small beer selection and wine you probably don't want. Corkage is advertised at $10 a bottle. Click for larger versions.

2020 Highland Park Sugar On My Tongue
Now as for the beer part of the equation, the evening's first was the 2020 Highland Park Sugar On My Tongue, a hazy double IPA hopped with Citra, Strata, and Nelson. The nose on this one was super bright, and displayed an in-your-face hop character moderated by blasts of juicy pineapple. The palate was unusually crisp and sharp, and I got the expected piney, "green" notes tempered by a smaller amount of tropical fruit. A fitting hot weather beer.

A Slice of New York Pizza Box
The place utilizes a generic pizza box. Do note its size though, as the pie was a full 18 inches in diameter. In comparison, a large from Domino's measures a mere 14 inches.

2020 Green Cheek Attack With Love
Next to drink was another hazy IPA, the 2020 Green Cheek Attack With Love, hopped with Galaxy and Citra. The bouquet here was a lot funkier, and nearly cheese-like at times. Taste-wise, I found it much more overtly bitter, with a distinct dankness to it.

A Slice of New York Pizza (Whole Pie)
And here's the whole pie, split between Margherita [$20.49] and The Manhattan [$21.99]. As for the price, it was $20.99, so sort of splitting the difference between the two flavors.

2020 Green Cheek The Other Brian
The second beer of the night from the brewery, the 2020 Green Cheek The Other Brian was a hazy double IPA incorporating Citra and Ekuanot. The aromas were noticeably juicier, more citrus-forward here. Tasting it, I found a soft hoppiness combined with resinous notes and a backing of indistinct fruit.

The Manhattan
The Manhattan | Meatball, sausage, pepperoni
A classic three-meat combo certainly satisfied. The key here was really the back-and-forth between the herbiness of the sausage and the spicy nature of the pepperoni, all evened out by the presence of cheese and crust. And speaking of that crust, I found it properly thin, but still structurally sound, while the edges were pleasantly crunchy. Curiously, this actually reminded me a bit of the Jeno's frozen pizzas of my childhood.

2020 Green Cheek Swim Test
We then moved on to a hazy triple IPA, the 2020 Green Cheek Swim Test, double dry hopped with Citra and a bit of Nelson. The nose on this one didn't stand out all that much, and conveyed your usual hoppy elements commingled with some barnyard notes. The taste, however, was somewhat more interesting, as I found the beer super crisp and extra spicy, though there were some moderating flavors of tropical fruit for good measure.

2020 Bottle Logic Prodigal Physics
The lone dark beer of the night came in the form of the 2020 Bottle Logic Prodigal Physics, an imperial stout aged in bourbon barrels with lactose, Ecuadorian cacao nibs, Madagascar vanilla, and summer strawberries. Huge strawberry on the nose here--in fact, I was really reminded of strawberry shortcake. Tasting it, I got more of that semi-jammy berry fruit, along with boozy heat, barrel, roasty grain, and even a trace of banana, but surprisingly little of the advertised chocolate or vanilla. The beer was pretty tasty, but didn't really capture the essence of its Neapolitan ice cream inspiration.

Margherita | Sliced tomatoes, garlic, Parmesan, fresh basil
This not-quite-traditional take on the Margherita met the mark. I was actually surprised at how much the cheese was emphasized here, so the bright, juicy contrast from the tomatoes was absolutely crucial. The basil was also much appreciated.

2020 Compass Box Rogues' Banquet
Serving as a bit of a digestif was the Compass Box Rogues' Banquet, a limited edition blended Scotch released back in March this year. The whisky had an uncommonly sweet, fruity nose, and in fact, I was reminded of Mott's apple juice. Tasting it, I got loads of spice up front, along with more sugary pome fruit and some nuttiness, while the finish brought me back to that warming spice.

2020 Highland Park Timbo Pils
One more beer for the night: the 2020 Highland Park Timbo Pils, a Pilsner with West Coast IPA influences, dry hopped with Mosaic and Citra. Aromas here were decidedly sugary and malty, and actually recalled cotton candy a bit. The nose, however, belied the palate, which was more on the savory, earthy, bitter, grassy, nutty side.

I'd actually gotten takeout numerous times from the original Slice of New York back when I worked in the area, and always found it to be a solid place to get a reasonable approximation of NY-style pizza. The Huntington Beach location is no different, and I certainly wouldn't mind it if Sami would open up a third restaurant, preferably closer to me.


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