Saturday, June 23, 2012

Late Night Bite: Mineo's Pizza

I am affiliated with PGH Taco Truck.

As a matter of fact - you could say it's my boyfriend. Well, the OWNER is my boyfriend, so the truck is by association. It has spent many a night (and day) parked in my own driveway.

A taco lover's dream-come-true.

Now, however, the truck is in Indiana (the state, not the city in PA) getting its new, awesome, super-functional kitchen installed, so life is quiet. James had to drive it out there, then had to find a way to get back - with the most cost-efficient being to take the good ol' Greyhound Bus.

He asked me to pick him up at the station downtown, and it actually worked out well, because the bus got in not long after I left work. I drove there, alerted him of my arrival, and he got in the car. Not long after, those words I expected to hear...

..."Are you hungry?"

I really wasn't, as I had planned out my eating pattern for the day, and it was already 10:30 PM, but I knew he had to be hungry after that long bus ride. I offered to stop somewhere, and since it was on the way home, he suggested Mineo's.

Wow. I hadn't had their pizza in forever. So I was ok with stopping there.

Mineo's Pizza House
 Mineo's is a Pittsburgh legend - although pizza is not something for which Pittsburgh is known, it is one of the more well-known pizza shops around town, with Aiello's being a neighborhood (actually, more of a 1/4 block) rival.  The Mineo's vs. Aiello's rivalry runs deep, but James insists both are great in their own ways.

He often gets 2 slices at each place - he likes the meatball topping on Mineo's; says it's the best pizza hot. They put a lot of cheese on it, and it gets quite greasy, but not in a bad way.  He says, however, this is not the pizza you want to eat cold because the cheese just doesn't taste right when it's not hot.

Aiello's, on the other hand, has a sweeter flavor profile, and the dough is chewier. James insists that his 2 slices from Aiello's come "off the top -- as is." I have yet to try Aiello's, but I am sure there will be another trip, another ride home, and another visit to Murray Avenue for pizza soon.

My dad used to stop at Mineo's to bring home their famous pizza when I was much younger, where I amongst other Pittsburghers, thought that it was awesome that they put the pepperoni UNDER the cheese.  I mean, how smart is that?  No pepperoni pieces falling off of the slice - they were trapped under the layer of cheese.

I have always made my pepperoni pizza that way.  No lie.

James suggested the Meatball Pizza, so we each got 2 slices.  We sat at the bar-style seating on one side of the place (the other was closed, since it was late and they were cleaning up that area) and waited patiently for our pizza.  Groups of teenagers graced some of the booths and counter area, with a few adults around.

I guess it's the place to be at 11pm in Squirrel Hill.

Our food was ready, and James brought it over to our seats.  Two thin-crusted slices, covered in bits of meatballs:

Meatball Pizza
 He suggested adding garlic powder and red pepper flakes, as he normally does, so I took his suggestion:

Meatball Pizza, with garlic powder and red pepper flakes (big difference...right?)
 The pizza was good.  Not overly-covered in cheese, thin, and tasty - I didn't feel overstuffed or regretful of my choice (even though I wasn't hungry to begin with).  For pizza, it was above-average.  

And who doesn't love above-average pizza...or pizza, period, for that matter?

Mineo's Pizza House
2128 Murray Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15217

Mineo's Pizza House (Squirrel Hill) on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. The best thing at Mineo's IMHO is the white w/ artichoke & tomato. They sprinkle a dry seasoning on top out of the oven that brings out the flavor. Did you know that they only use 3 types of provolone (no Mozz) and on any given day depending n the blend, the saltiness could vary as a result of variance. I get a couple slices off the top plain when @ Joe's place and yes, he has sweeter sauce, but his crust is his own version of Mineo's high gluten crust given he used to work for them many moons ago (or so I've been told). Also, ya gotta go to Joe Aiello's when he is there, cuz HE makes 'em better of course. :)