BY BETH KAISERMAN
Approaching 60 Greenpoint Avenue, you might think Paulie Gee’s is closed. I did. But inside was a wooden-colored pizzeria buzzing with people digging into Paulie Gee’s Neopolitan-style pizza, and maybe a Mexican coke.
Every ingredient that goes in the wood-fired oven at Paulie Gee’s, including the cheese, is fresh and local.
Out of the nine pizza options and a few daily specials, I went for the Delboy – fior di latte, Italian tomatoes, Sopressata Picante (spicy pepperoni) and Parmigiano Reggiano. Though a couple of the veggie-friendly options with fresh lemon juice sounded interesting, my waitress assured me the Delboy was a prime choice. (So much for the 2-day health kick I was on.) Another interesting choice was the Cherry Jones, a special with dried Bing cherries, fior di latte, prosciutto di parma and gorgonzola.
A team of five people, including Paulie Gee, were working together to make the pizza – running containers of veggies and toppings out, tossing the dough, assembling and putting it into the flaming oven. When the Delboy came out, Paulie Gee came over and explained that there were a few holes in the center, but that the rest of the pie came out too beautiful to throw it away. The personal interaction was a nice touch, especially since he had a nearly full house on his hands.
The dough smelled very sweet when the pizza was set down. The pizza is extremely thin, maybe equivalent to 2.5 sheets of paper. This is not ideal if you’re really hungry, but may be better for lunch or just to enjoy with drinks. Also, the meat was scarce; there were about six or seven burnt-edged sopressata slices on the whole pie.
The pie was tastier at certain points, but was not consistent throughout. Some of the crust was nice and chewy; other parts were too airy and not satisfying. The sweet, slightly chunky sauce was the highlight.
The prices include tax; the Delboy was $15, a bit much for something not fulfilling enough. Obviously, you’re paying for local quality, which is always a fantastic feeling. If you want to leave full, order three pies for two people, or choose the healthier road and go for two pies and a salad. There’s also Van Leeuwen Artisan ice cream on the dessert menu for those who believe in “leaving room” for sweet rewards.
The restaurant has both small tables and longer ones for groups. Maybe I was just tired from work, but I found the wooden seats very uncomfortable.
Paulie Gee’s offers a very welcoming atmosphere – an ideal spot for enjoying a small bite of pizza made from Brooklyn’s best ingredients. Seeing Paulie Gee front and center making the pies definitely adds to the ambiance.