Monday, October 25, 2010

Perugini Pizzeria

Several months ago, a reader sent me an email recommending this place to me because she liked it so much. I put it on the list (I really do put them all on the list, it just takes awhile to get to them sometimes) and we finally got around to trying it the other day. The pizza on the website looked pretty good, and you know I am always looking for good New York style pizza.

The first thing we noticed (we went for lunch) is that it was completely empty which always makes me nervous, but the owner, who also does the cooking, was very friendly and greeted us warmly. The one pizza they had available (cheese) was not overly appealing looking because it had been there awhile, but he said he would make up whatever we wanted, or we could have an entire pie (with one topping) for $5.00. This is a regular lunch deal there. This is a great deal for a 14 inch pizza with 8 slices. Now, if you want more toppings, they are $1.75 each, so you can quickly get more expensive, but still, $6.75 for this much pizza was a great deal. We got my favorite, mushroom and red onion.

But of course, because I am easily convinced to try lots of things, we also got an order of breadsticks. They make them plain, stuffed with pepperoni, or stuffed with mozzarella. We got the cheese stuffed ones. I was impressed to watch him get the dough out and make the breadsticks (rolling the dough around the cheese) and the pizza, right then and there. He told me he makes the dough and the pizza sauce from scratch. It took a little longer than running in for a slice for lunch, but watching him toss our pizza fresh was worth it.

So I really enjoyed the breadsticks. They were soft with a nice crisp edge and obviously as fresh and hot as was really possible considering they just came out of the oven. I am guessing it is the same dough used for the pizza crust, but I liked this version of it better because it was slightly chewy with a crisp and seasoned outer crust. They served them with parmesan cheese in a shaker as well as a side of bright orange cheese dipping sauce (which was maybe slightly better than most bright orange dipping sauce, but I am guessing this stuff is not being made in house). But I really didn’t need to dip my cheese stuffed breadsticks into another “cheese” sauce, but a little container of marinara might have been nice (or even garlic butter).

The pizza came out looking much better than I expected (I told you I was nervous by the lack of clientele). It was good pizza. The crust was very thin and crispy, and the sauce was savory and in just the right proportion to the rest of the pizza (I have said before, I am not a fan of really saucy pizza). The other ingredients were in just the right proportion as well. You got the cheesy pizza experience without it being mounded too high and making the crust soggy and not allowing you to taste it. It was maybe just a little too crispy for true (as I see it) New York style pizza. But it was good enough that if it were in my neighborhood, it would be in the rotation.

The décor is minimal. Hubby described it as “1984 pizza parlor.” It was plastic booths and a couple of video games and half of the place was painted in what I would call a disturbing shade of greenish. Not an overly appetizing color shall we say. I did enjoy that the soundtrack seemed to go along with the 1984 theme; we heard Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston and the Go Go’s while there. (OK. I am being sarcastic about enjoying the music, with the exception of the Go Go’s.) But it was humorous. Several people came in and carried out while we were there, and my guess is they sell more pizza for dinner. And maybe there just isn’t an overwhelming desire of people to partake of the ambiance, but the pizza is certainly being made with care, the owners are quite nice, and overall the quality of the food was very good. If you live on that side of town (West), I would give it a go. (And you know I am always looking for more recommendations for pizza, so keep ‘em coming!).

Perugini Pizzeria
3350 N. High School Road
Indy 46224
317/405-9386
http://www.peruginipizzeria.com/

Perugini's Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

6 comments:

  1. Yay, you reviewed it! I hope your post drives business there because we would love for Emerson to stay in business.

    I've never been there for lunch but I suspected what you found. He's been trying to drive up business for the middle of the day but dinner is his money-maker.

    I'm surprised you weren't offered a cup of marinara with your breadsticks -- we've always been given the choice of sauce or cheese. I always get the pepperoni breadsticks and they are so good!

    Yes, the decor is odd and the color of the walls is unappetizing. But the food makes up for it and Emerson is certainly worth the business.

    Thanks for giving Perugini a chance!

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  2. Thanks for this! I am on the west side of town and look forward to trying out a new pizza place near me!
    --beffuh

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  3. The $5 pizza deal is available all the time, not just for lunch.

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  4. according to the website, it does look like the $5 deal is now good all day long. This is a great deal.

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  5. Perugini moved to a smaller location a few doors south in the same strip (Suite E) and then surprisingly didn't reopen for almost a year. I was crushed when I thought Emerson went out of business but, turns out, he didn't! He recently reopened with a slightly different business model: pick-up and delivery only. Had we not noticed that he was open on our way home from dinner we would've purchased a pizza on the spot.

    The website is new (http://www.peruginis.com, and he's also on Facebook) and the prices are a little higher, but the pizza is the same delicious East Coast style as before. He no longer carries green olives—my husband may have been the only person to ever order them—so I brought Emerson a small can for our pie's topping since The Huz has been spoiled by having them on his Perugini pizza. I suspect, weight loss plan or not, that we will go back to ordering from Perugini about once a week from now on.

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  6. Perugini closed for almost a year after the move to a smaller spot in that strip and, after being open again for several months, is closed for good now. There is a FOR LEASE sign in the window, which I saw when I went there for pizza the other day. Makes me sad.

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Thanks, Erin