No pizza ever quite compares to the stuff you grow up with. (We call it the Pizza Cognition Theory.) So when SE contributor John M. Edwards found out Erin Zimmer and I were going to Pittsburgh, he insisted we stop at Mineo's Pizza House:
I've been eating there since I was old enough to fold a slice, and I think it's the best pie in Pittsburgh. The crust is crackly and chewy, they never skimp on the cheese, and they always cook it perfectly, until there's just a little browning. They also put the toppings under the cheese on made-to-order pizzas, so that the flavor of the toppings is fully integrated with the whole pie. It's pizza from a different era; so many pizzerias now have newly renovated interiors, fig/pear/arugula toppings, and at least one person on the waitstaff with a bachelor's degree from Vassar. Mineo's isn't a "reinvention" of anything; it's the real deal, a hometown original.
And even stripped of the nostalgia, it's pretty solid pizza—a slightly sweet, tangy sauce, a blanket of melty mozz, the slices tossed back in the oven before serving. I would've liked a bit more chew in the crust, which was nicely flavorful but just a little tough. Still, all in all, more than tasty.
Mineo's Pizza House
2128 Murray Avenue, Pittsburgh PA 15217 (map)