When Bon Appétit magazine declares the best pizza in America is in your backyard, you’ve got see for yourself if it lives up to the hype!
At Pizza Beddia there is no phone, no preorders, no chairs, no slices, no restroom. Cash only. Whole pies only. One size only. Maximum of 2 pies per party. 40 pizzas per night sold. 2 small tables for stand-up dining. BYO. Open Wednesday to Saturday 5:30 pm-10:30pm. On several recent summer days, my husband determined to get one of these pizzas and see why it was declared the Best Pizza in America. And days it took!
It took 3 tries before the Pizza Pilgrim’s mission was successful. The first time he got to the pizzeria an hour before it opened and the line was already more than 20 people long. Most patrons order 2 pies so that meant a dreaded “Sold Out”! The second trip to the city( we live 20 miles in the suburbs) he hit traffic and knew the journey was futile. The third time he lined up 2 hours and 15 minutes before Beddia opened and wasn’t even first in line! This was the night he would be victorious and taste the Best Pizza in America! Even though the wait was long, Chris felt a sense of community with the other pizza lovers and enjoyed the comraderie in the queue. One guy brought beer to share. A young woman who worked a night shift had gotten up early to be sure to get a pizza for her boyfriend’s birthday, his only wish. Some of the queuing patrons were regulars who lived in this hipster neighborhood of Fishtown in Philadelphia and were now obliged to stand in line to get a slice of the prized pizza. Even if you are one of the lucky first 20 in line, it pays to be at the front: Beddia makes every pie himself, one at a time. So if you get to place an order for that night’s coveted pies, yours might not be ready for several more hours. People behind my husband were being told to return at 9:30 to pick up their order, and this at 5:30!!!
On his drive home, after sampling a slice, hot right out of the oven( who could blame the hero of this story!) , my husband continued building the anticipation by giving me a play by play of his journey back. I invited friends to join us for an impromptu tasting of the famous pizza. Randy, a New Yorker pizza connaisseur, declared it excellent. And it was! Pizza Beddia: Believe the Hype! But go early and be prepared to wait!
To view the original article in Bon Appétit magazine and view a video of Joe Beddia in action, please visit: http://www.bonappetit.com/people/chefs/article/beddia