Thursday, February 27, 2014

Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza

I love food.  I love fine dining.  I love tasting menus. I love omakase sushi. I love modern cooking skills.  I love pasta. I love burgers.  But what I really love is a kick ass slice of pizza.

And I spend an enormous amount of time and energy hunting for quality pizza in South Florida.    Unfortunately, almost every spot turns out to be a bust.  There are only a handful of spots from Palm Beach to Miami that are worthy of your time and money.  And Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza remains one that should be on the top of your list. My current pizza rankings can be reviewed here.

I've enjoyed Anthony's pizza since they opened their flagship spot in 2002. Owner Anthony Bruno and I not only share a love of pizza but we both grew up on Long Island and are Jets fans. That's a winning combination.

Anthony combines traditional New York style pizza flavors with the high heat of a coal fired oven. This results in a uniquely charred thin crust pizza with a proper ratio of ingredients that is packed with great flavor. And they are consistently great. 

After years of aggressive expansion all over South Florida and the East Coast, I am happy to report that they are still at the top of their game.  We've seen a lot of imitators pop up over the years but most don't compare in quality or consistency.

I've neglected Anthony's over the years primarily because of my quest to find more great spots.  But I'm making an effort to get back to the spots that are doing things right and Anthony's qualifies for sure.

It should be noted that Anthony's has done an impressive job of incorporating craft beers into the mix with a strong local presence as well.  The Aventura location features “Coal Fired & Craft Beer” Mondays and Tuesdays featuring half off craft beers from local brewers. They recently teamed up with Ft. Lauderdale brewery Funky Buddha to create an Italian-American ale, Fuhgeddaboudit Red that is available exclusively at Anthony's. 

And make sure you order their wings.  They are fantastic and easily the best in town.

Anthony’s traditional pie consists of the fresh mozzarella, Italian plum tomatoes, Romano cheese, basil and olive oil. The sauce, cheese and dough always taste great and I really enjoy the char on the dough and upper crust.

One of my favorite pies is their Broccoli Rabe & Sausage featuring Italian greens sauteed in garlic and olive oil served with their great Italian sausage and served over a traditional pie.  Other favorites include the Eggplant Marino, Paul and Young Ron (meatballs, sausage, hot or sweet peppers & ricotta cheese) and the Philly Cheesesteak (thinly sliced top round marinated and served with caramelized onions).

The pizza is great but the wings are even better.  They are easily the best in town. They are coal oven roasted and served with caramelized onions and focaccia bread.

The aforementioned Fuhgeddaboudit Red from Funky Buddha Brewery.  This "Italian-American" ale is crafted with a blend of European barley and English hops. Their goal was to be flavorful enough to balance out the intense crunch of a coal fired crust and be refined enough to pair with delicate San Marzano tomato sauce.  They nailed it.  For the beer snobs out there, it's described as an English Red Ale with 5.4% ABV and 20 IBUs.

Sausage fans will enjoy their Broccoli Rabe & Sausage.

Eggplant Marino will please the eggplant lover.  It's thinly sliced and served with fresh tomato sauce and Romano cheese.

Meatballs with Ricotta Cheese.  Anthony's serves large hand rolled meatballs that are slowly cooked in their tomato sauce.  I like the sauce and the balls are good but not the best in town. 

Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza on Urbanspoon

Check for locations HERE.

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