A N.Y. Pizza House- Cocoa Beach, FL- 3.5 stars
After watching "The Untouchables" for the hundredth time the other night, I was channeling my inner Al Capone and cravin' some Italian grub. After donning my fedora, I headed up towards Cocoa Beach. I know what you're thinking. Really? You are going to get authentic Italian style food in Cocoa Beach, Florida?Fuhgeddaboudit! However, you would be mistaken. Sitting rather unassumingly just south of 520 on Hwy A1A is a quaint little piece of Goombah heaven known as, "A N.Y. Pizza House."
While not much to look at on either the outside or inside, they sure know how to cook up standard Italian street fare. I entered and sat at an open table. Soon a young obviously overworked server approached my table. She stated in a customary way that her name was Ava and followed that up with the cursory, "How may I help you?" I started with a Philly Cheesesteak Roll, followed by an order of Baked Ziti and ended the whole shebang with a slice of deep dish pizza. A few minutes after she left she reappeared with my order. Within a few bites of my Philly Cheesesteak, I was looking around to see if Rocky was jogging by as I swore I had been instantly transported to The City of Brotherly Love. The roll was fresh and delicious and practically oozing prime cuts of aged steak and cheese. I then moved on to the Baked Ziti. While the sausage was fresh and flavorful and the peppers cooked to a perfect al dente, the red sauce looked better than it tasted. It seemed bursting with freshness but was exceedingly bland. The accompanying salad was the standard Italian one with a side of fresh blue cheese dressing. The tomatoes were fresh and crisp to the bite and the blue cheese was real. The jewel to be found here was the freshly baked homemade garlic roll that would make me consider running whiskey down from Canada so that I could eat some more (that's not illegal anymore, right?). With my mouth bursting with the joy of their garlic rolls my eye spied a slice of Heaven still perched atop my table, the feta and spinach stuffed deep dish pizza awaits! I eagerly dug in and was not disappointed. The sauce was a perfect mix of herbs and spices, the inside was overstuffed and exploding with real goat's milk feta and garden fresh spinach. Big Boy says if you pass this place up for lunch, you're a real mamaluke!