I'm facing a bit of a conundrum here when it comes to reviewing the pan pizza from Pronto Pizza on Court Street in Brooklyn's Cobble Hill neighborhood, because Pronto is my go-to Brooklyn pizzeria for delivery, but this is not the pan pizza of my past. From the outside, Pronto Pizza seems a little too new and cutesy for me. The font on their signage is a little cartoonish, and the letters are set at jaunty angles like they could be welcoming you into one of those joint toy/haircut stores for kids you see around town. But I ordered their delivery one night in a fit of not caring about typography and haven't looked back.
It turns out that there's nothing new and cutesy about this pizzeria, which has been around since 1988 and has grown to multiple locations. The serious hipster pizzeria in my neighborhood has a warning on its website about how delivery will take at least 45 minutes because they make and send out one pie at a time due to the delicate nature of pizza. I don't know if Pronto Pizza has a similar sort-of-pretentious attitude toward their pies, but mine have always arrived fresh and still steamy. I've tried all of the normal pepperoni, sausage, meatballs, and various veggie toppings on my 16" regular crust (they also have whole wheat and gluten-free pizza), but it was the pan pizza that really caught my eye when I first ordered from Pronto.
The pan pizza I was raised on is known for its buttery thick crust full of air pockets made in a deep cast iron pan and the textural fortitude to hold all of the toppings ever created on land and sea. This crust was thin and very dense with none of the soft airy dough I was looking forward to biting into, and its lack of the usual air pockets led to me feeling like I'd eaten a whole pizza after just one slice. (So it's a great value if you stop by Pronto Pizza for just one slice!) That night, I ordered my pan pizza with grilled chicken and Alfredo sauce. The sauce was creamy and oozy and plentiful, and the cheese was as thick as the buttery crust itself. A generous sprinkling of diced chicken and spices completed a delicious, if not traditional, pan pizza. I think I'll stick with the regular crust for my day-to-day whole pie Pronto Pizza delivery orders, but the pan will be great for single slices savored outside of the store.
- Katie Ett, donuts4dinner.com