57: Black Sheep's Meatball, Ricotta, and Garlic Pizza

Do you remember when pizza was pizza? This was before you could choose between a BBQ Chicken with Banana Peppers and a Mock Duck Ginger Hoisin. And way before anyone dreamed up the Doritos Crunchy Crust (yes, that is a thing). While our crazy free market economy of pizza is entertaining, what happens when you want to kick it old school?

See also: 58: Poutine at Triple Rock

Enter Black Sheep's Meatball, Ricotta, and Garlic pizza. One taste of this perfect pie is like stepping into a portal that kicks you out onto New York's Spring Street circa 1905. The pizzaiolos of the Lower East Side used coal-burning ovens to darken their crusts, and Black Sheep follows in the same tradition. Over a hundred years later the technology hasn't changed much, and thankfully, neither have the results.

Black Sheep's crust walks the line. It's crisp, but not shatteringly so. It's thin, but will not buckle under the weight of ample toppings. Best of all, the crust is slightly blackened, but not pocked with burnt bubbles like so many wood-fired pizzas are prone to. You get just a taste of fire from its charred edges, instead of a mouthful of smoke.

Meatball, ricotta, and garlic make up the holy trinity of ingredients on this crust. With a slightly sweet, old-world tomato sauce as its base, the meatballs are thinly sliced and piled on, topped with clouds of fresh, milky ricotta cheese, thinly sliced garlic, and torn basil leaves. The pizza is deeply comforting, but not too simple. Just when you think you're indulging in a meat pizza with a capital M, a dollop of ricotta brings the flavors back into balance. It's a pizza that would make a paisano proud.

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