, Tue, September 20, 2016
It’s almost inconceivable to think of a New York without pizza–no dollar slices, no hitting up the latest wood/brick/coal-oven joint, no arguing over the city’s best slice. But until September 20, 1944, New Yorkers lived this deprived life. It was on this day that the New York Times first introduced the word “pizza.”
Around this time, American troops were plenty in Italy, and they were enjoying the saucy, cheesy delicacy of their host country. The article, titled “News of Food: Pizza, a Pie Popular in Southern Italy, Is Offered Here for Home Consumption,” describes the new food as “a pie made from a yeast dough and filled [their meaning for “topped”] with any number of different centers, each one containing tomatoes. Cheese, mushrooms, anchovies, capers, onions and so on may be used.”
The rest of the pizza history here
The story behind cheese-aging facility Crown Finish Caves in Crown Heights tells of an enormous amount of risk and dedication to making something on a small scale; to doing one thing well. It also once again stirs the hive of buzz around today’s Brooklyn. Article after article raises the idea that Brooklyn’s moment as the new hot spot for excellence in food, culture and authentic, hand-crafted goods, is in some quarters regarded as trite and trendy hype with little substance to it.
For some, the underground cheese caves are just one more example: Cheese caves. How Brooklyn. Thirty feet below street level, in the lagering tunnels of a former brewery beneath the Monti Building in Crown Heights, Benton Brown and Susan Boyle spent several years renovating and creating “Brooklyn’s premier cheese-aging facility” complete with state-of-the-art humidity control and cooling systems. The couple created the 70-foot space with advice from the world’s top cheese experts; Crown Finish Caves opened in 2014. On an article in Cheese Notes, a commenter raves: “If I were a mouse, I would move to Crown Heights.”
More excellence and authenticity this way