Yes, yes, we know CT peeps are super hardcore about their favorite pies. But with all the big guys like Colony Grill, Pepe’s, Bar, Krust, and Stanziato’s, it’s easy to not even make it out to some of the other amazing pizza shops people are talking about . . . that is, until you luckily stumble upon them while brewery hopping with Dan’s brother and sister-in-law. While Zuppardi’s has been around since 1932 (they started as a bakery but transitioned into a pizzeria in the 1940s) in West Haven, they just recently rolled out their food truck and have been parking it outside of Stony Creek Brewery, which is where we found it.
For us, it was a golden opportunity to pop our Zuppardi’s cherry pepper. Before we even made our way into the brewery Dan put an order in for the Spicy Fresh Clams Casino which included mozzarella, freshly shucked clams, hot cherry peppers, garlic and sausage (they were out of bacon which normally comes on the pie, so we substituted.)
After about 10 minutes (they were busy and good pies take time), Dan shuttled the pie over to everybody while the box threatened to burn off a layer of palmskin. Dan found everyone at a table on the deck, right by a musician singing songs perfect for an afternoon at a brewery. When the box was opened, we realized the 10″ specialty pie wouldn’t be enough for us. But, what it lacked in size, it made up for in taste! The crust was thin to medium in thickness and had that nice crispy, yet doughy chew you come to expect from a real pizzaiolo. In terms of flavor, this just screamed summer to us with the perfectly cooked clams, good amount of fresh cheese and that beautiful garlicky undertone you want with a pie like this.
So, we were very impressed, but we knew that we needed more if we were going to last until 8PM for dinner at Dew Drop Inn. So, this time Kristien went out to the parking lot and got a second pie. And this pie was large, like large enough to make us question if this lunch was now too big. Our pizza featured sausage and cherry peppers that immediately sent us into a state of euphoria. The pie was just amazing yet again, with a fantastic red sauce that had a slightly sweet richness to it with a little tangy kick. All four of us agreed that the pie was one of the best we’ve all had in a long time and both of us proclaimed that this was one of, if not, the best pizza pies in Connecticut. Chad, Dan’s brother, was blown away that a pie like this came from a food truck when he noted most pizza places with full-on oven set ups can’t even put out a product close to this.
So, we have to admit that we are converts now after eating the hell out of those two pies. But, of course we aren’t alone in our professed love because The Daily Meal recently put out their 101 Best Pizzas of 2015 (in the entire US) and Zuppardi’s sliced its way into number 57, beating Bar (#61), Ernie’s Pizzeria (#85), Domenick and Pia’s (#67), and Roseland (#84) who also impressively made the list.
We’ll gladly chase their truck down, as you should too, but we’ll also try to check out their pizza joint for a full dinner with friends so we can do some taste comparisons. We have a feeling it will hold up quite well! And, if we’re having a lazy kind of week, we could also have them ship a six pack of pies right to our front door. Damn right we want apizza this!