Photographs by Robyn Lee

As far as I'm concerned, every neighborhood in the U.S. should have at least one serious pizzeria. How do I define serious? The oven (be it gas, wood, coal, or electric) has to get hot enough (800°F, at least) to slightly char the pie and cook the crust all the way through in a few minutes. The cheese has to be fresh mozzarella, and high-quality canned tomatoes must be used for sauce.

Covo has brought serious pizza to West Harlem, just off the West Side Highway at 135th Street. My Margherita was more than respectable, as you can see from the pictures. The crust was chewy and pliable, the mozzarella was creamy and tangy, and the tomatoes and fresh basil were up to snuff. The other food we ordered (fried calamari, beet-and-walnut salad) was less successful, so I would stick with the pizza for now.



701 West 135th Street, New York, NY 10031 (at West Side Highway; map)


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