Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Can you miss something you never had?

It is with a heavy heart that I report that it would appear that Alberto's Pizza (of DuPont Circle and Adams Morgan) has aborted its plans to open in Silver Spring. For what seems like ages, they've had their sign up on the storefront at 9433 Georgia Ave, yet it never looked like they were actually moving in. I have speculated in the past that perhaps the fire at their Adams Morgan shop delayed their plans, but that was a long time ago.

Well, the Alberto's sign is still up, but there's a big "FOR LEASE" sign in the window.That's a damn shame, because Alberto's probably would have become Silver Spring's best pizza by default. Sigh.

I guess the sign can be put into storage with the "Future Home of the Birchmere" banner, or we could open a museum of defunct plans for Silver Spring. On your left is the American Dream Mall exhibit...



56 comments:

Anonymous said...

I still have a T shirt from the day we all built the "interim park" following the demolition of the armory and some of the smaller commercial buildings on and around Ellsworth. I shovelled about a ton of sand of the volleyball court and my kids planted trees. I'll gladly donate it to the museum.

silver spring penguin said...

Could we move the "penguin" statue into this museum? I'm talking about the poor little bastard out by the library parking lot.

Breaks my heart each time I see him there, even if he isn't a real penguin. :-((

TimW said...

"best pizza by default"

Is it seriously better than Mama Lucia???

Anonymous said...

Don't forrget to add the so called purple line station to the list, they should have a little room for it at the musseum...

Anonymous said...

Don't forrget to add the so called purple line station to the list, they should have a little room for it at the musseum...

baj said...

vace still beats alberto's in my book. alberto's often has too free a hand when it comes to bombarding the 'za with their special oregano spices.

Springvale Roader said...

If Silver Spring had a shop that sold New York City-quality pizza and bagels, life would be bliss.

Anonymous said...

Mama Lucia pizza is awful, and can't even beat ZPizza or Armands. And costs twice as much for your trouble.

Anonymous said...

Can we get a 2-Amy's Pizzeria???
The best in town:-)

Sligo said...

2 Amy's... would be great but I'm not holding my breath.

Anonymous said...

Actually Mama Lucia's isn't awful, and I say that as someone who grew up in Brooklyn. Is it great? no. But for this area it's pretty good, although I've found that it's better by the slice. I just can't order Domino's or Pizza Hut and teh like. Z pizza is eh, it just tastes too much like the pizza buy at Giant and put in your oven.

Springvale Roader said...

You know what's odd? That DeMarco's hasn't moved into the pizza delivery business. Granted, their restaurant food is only so-so, but still, you'd think that pizza sauce would be in their blood, so to speak.

Alls I knows is that there is now a vacant restaurant space to the left of the coming Fillmore that is just begging to be a late night purveyor of falafels or pizza slices or similar foods craved by post-concert young and hungry music fans. I've told Mrs. Springvale Roader that if only we have the money to invest and the know-how, we could do really well at that location -- just like the folks who run Amsterdam Falafel; they scoop up all the hungries who stumble out of Adams Morgans' bars.

nikki said...

Well...you can add Ruby Tuesday's to the list of dead businesses in Shitty Place.

Sligo said...

Goooooooooooooooooooodbye Ruby Tuesday's.

Ed said...

Pizza at Mamma Lucia's: Meh
Pizza at Z Pizza: Horrid
Pizza at DeMarco's: Forgettable
Pizza at Jerry's: OK
Pizza at 4 Corners Pub: Great, and 1/2 price Tuesday and Thursday.
Pizza at Potomac Pizza in Chevy Chase: Real good and on Tues buy a grande pie get the second for 99 cents.

Springvale Roader said...

We like Z Pizza (when they don't overcook the crust, that is), but then, we get it with soy cheese, so we're talking a whole 'nother beast here. However, it does go well with copious amounts of red wine.

Does 4 Corners Pub deliver? Potomac Pizza is that good, eh? That's pretty far to go for a pizza, alas.

Easley Does It said...

Wait, there's a Potomac Pizza in Chevy Chase?! Where? I love Potomac Pizza. Had it once when visiting my rich friend in, well, Potomac. Lately I've been getting my pies at the Ledo's on Georgia Ave. just across the District line.

nikki said...

I'm a big fan of Manny and Olgas myself. And their hot wings are quite tasty as well.

nikki said...

The PP in CC is right by the metro. In that newley renovated plaza thingie.

Ed said...

Springvale, I don't think 4 Corners Pub delivers . . . and you won't find soy cheese there :-) We feast on a large with Sausage, Onion and Green Pepper. The beer is FREEZING cold there.

Potomac pizza in CC is only 5 miles from Z Pizza in SS. That's not pretty far in my book. Then again, I think nothing of driving to Baltimore to get a great Corned Beef w/mustard on Rye.

rooster said...

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Anonymous said...

Mia's Pizza on Cordell Ave in Bethesda is fantastic. It's very similar to 2 Amys but there will be debate on which is better (kind of like BMW vs. Mercedes...both fantastic but each appeal to different people). If you haven't been go now.

Caroline said...

You can carry out 4 Corners Pub Pizza. I hear-tell the pizza "chef" there is 80 years old and has perfected this recipe over the years. It's quite good. I prefer pizzas that are oven fired--like Bertucci's.

Anonymous said...

I must have different taste than everyone. I work in CC, and my coworkers love Potomac Pizza, while I can't stand it. Way too greasy for me -- the grease drowns out the pizza.

Anonymous said...

nikki said...
Well...you can add Ruby Tuesday's to the list of dead businesses in Shitty Place.

7/10/2008 3:14 PM
Sligo said...
Goooooooooooooooooooodbye Ruby Tuesday's.

7/10/2008 3:16 PM

RE: Do you people really live in Silver Spring or is this your ways of being hateful towards Large Chain Businesses in Maryland for the sake of supporting Large Chain Buseinesses outside of the State in Areas like NOVA and DC.......

Anonymous said...

You want GOOD pizza? Try Di Fara's on Ave. J in Brooklyn. Now that is some serious sh*t. Maybe we can get him to deliver... As for bagels, I'm partial to Ess-a-Bagel in Manhatten. Sigh...

BTW: 7/10/2008 11:53 PM -- I live in SS and yes, I really do hate big chains restaurants. They serve the same mediocre (at best) garbage everywhere, be it SS or LA or Vegas or Detroit or Elizabeth -- the arm pit of New Jersey...

Anonymous said...

Many of the beloved mom and pop places in SS (living and dead)have served food just as "mediocre (at best)" as anything from the chains. A good restaurant is a good restaurant; and a bad one is bad. They should be judged by their quality (and oh, yeah, cleanliness) regardless of whether they fit someone's economic worldview. Da Marco, in my experience is pretty mundane; moreover, their space has always been dingy and unappealing. The owner has complained that the chains hurt his business, but why isn't he out there hustling for customers with fliers, signs, coupons, etc.? Hey, at least the chains have put people on the street in SS -- something DaMarco and the other mediocre non-chains never did during SS's pre-redevelopment "heyday."

Springvale Roader said...

Ed, you've convinced to try Four Corners Pub's pizza. I'll just get it cheeseless and add the soy cheese myself (ummm, bean-derived cheeselike substance!).

I hear ya on driving far for a culinary treasure. If I could, I'd drive to Jerusalem for a decent falafel.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous (from 9:30 AM): I couldn't agree with you more about DiMarco's. He has done nothing to promote his business other than sit back and do the same ole' thing. This can be said about a lot of mom & pop Silver Spring businesses.

It's not like the old days where it cost a lot of money to promote yourself. Now, there are endless free resources on the internet and with a little effort and elbow grease, everyone would know about you. Hell, even this BLOG is free!
Just to be clear, I'm in no way a fan of Red Lobster, Macaroni Grill or the like but I don't want to hear about how they have hurt the independent owner who sits back and waits for doomsday without fighting back.

Anonymous said...

"driving to Baltimore to get a great Corned Beef w/mustard on Rye."

Why go all the way to Baltimore when you can go to the Parkway Deli right here in Silver Spring? Their corned beef is amazing.

Anonymous said...

ANON on 7/11 at 9:30 AM... Who the heck said anything about DiMarcos? I'm talkin Brooklyn, NY fool. And my experience is that most chain restaurants suck... I judge them by the same criteria as any other restaurant, but as someone who has worked in the food business for a long time, my hunch is that if you knew what goes on in the food industry -- especially chains and mediocre non-chain places -- you would think twice about eating in them. If you want quality out - you need to do your homework. Also that usually means it ain't gonna be cheap, fool...

Anonymous said...

To the 2 Anon. posters,

You must not have been to De Marco in a very long time...

Jerry

socoblogboy said...

I'm surprised no one has added Vicino pizza to the mix. I'm not saying they're the best, but still a good option for those pizza-deprived folks in the hood. It's a nice thin crust - pretty much NY style. IMO their white pizza is good, and also their regular cheese and tomato (I always ask for a crispy crust) is quite tasty. Also John and his staff are good folks. I'd like like them to stay in business.

Anonymous said...

"try Di Fara's on Ave. J in Brooklyn"

well that's wonderful mr. or miss brooklyn, but we don't live there, so maybe that's why someone (not me, never tried it) somebody brought up demarco's. If this were a blog based in brooklyn your suggestion would have made sense. May as well suggest a place in Italy, same relevance, "fool."

WashingtonGardener said...

I 2nd Manny & Olga's - - I like the garlic kick they add to the sauce. Vicino's is also good. Mamma Lucia? Ugh! I'd rather have a Hot Pocket.

Debbie Cook said...

Nobody's mentioned the best yet - Ledo's Pizza and I'm not talking about the chain Ledo pizza. The best pizza is at the Original Ledo's Pizza in Adelphi on University Blvd. (it's not the same pizza that you get at the chain Ledo stores). The only drawback is driving through the dreaded Langley Park to get there. But soooo worth it!

Anonymous said...

Even if Alberto's had gone into that location, would you have gone there? The parking stinks, you have to walk by the porn shop, and it's no wonder there's no place good in there (except Tropical Lagoon, but I prefer not to eat there!)

Sligo said...

Two words: carry out

I live close enough to be there and back in 10.

Springvale Roader said...

Hey Ed:

Look, you seem like a decent guy and all, but -- no offense -- your opinion on pizza ain't worth shiite. I tried 4 Corners pizza today, and the crust was like cardboard and the sauce was like Safeway-brand ketchup! I think the 'shrooms were canned, but if they weren't, they may as well have been.

It's too bad, because I like the joint, and indeed, the beer is ice cold. Methinks it's a darn good place to get a beer, but I'll stick to Z Pizza for grub.

Vagrarian said...

I hang my head and admit I actually kinda like Mama Lucia's, but don't get it often. Never had ZPizza or Four Corners, but I recently discovered Manny & Olga's and find it quite good.

Of course, with prices being what they are, I'm going to experiment with making my own. If y'all behave yourselves, maybe I'll invite folks over sometime.

Ed said...

Oh Springvale . . .
You're correct, I'm a very decent guy. I gotta take your review with a grain of soy salt. Going to a pizza joint and asking to get it cooked sans cheese, add your own soy cheese . . . how good can that be? That's handicapping any pizza place. I just can't see that as a fair analysis. No offense.

Bring your own beans to Starbucks?

We usually go on 1/2 price Thursdays and many times have to wait for a table. It is always packed. My daughters asked the owner, "How many pizzas do you make on a Thursday?" He said about 300 to 500. Every time I've walked past Z Pizza you can count the patrons on 1/2 of one hand.

As far as Z Pizza goes, you are more than welcomed to it and I'm glad you enjoy it.
When we went, (once) my wife took one bite and looked at me as I took a bite. I said, "I can't eat this." She said, "Me neither." My daughters who are restaurant savvy took a couple of bites and left it. That told me all I needed know. If kids don't like a simple cheese pizza, it's crap.

The same thing happened when CakeLove got some ink and Food Network notice. We went down to his DC store when it was the only store. We excitedly bought 6 cupcakes. My oldest daughter took one bite and spit it out. I couldn't believe it until I tried it, horrid. When CL opened in SS we gave it another try, was better but still not good. If u want some excellent cupcakes get down to Georgetown Cupcakes, http://georgetowncupcake.com/home.html those are the best cups ever. Be prepared to wait, but don't get there after lunch or they'll be pretty much gone.

Misc replies to other posts:
- I don't hate on large chains unless they ask for it. I give plenty o moola to local and large chains.

-Can't believe I forgot the orginal Ledo's, that is good pie but haven't been in a while.

- I really like Parkway Deli and yes the corned beef there is very good. However, it runs a distant second to Attmans Deli in B'more. http://www.attmansdeli.com/
"I'll take one with mustard", is all you need to say. Unless of course, you need to specify that you'd like the fattier corned beef. The brisket sammy with their own mustard is amazing.

-Wish Alberto's had come, even next to a porn shop. You can't have enough non-soy pizza places :-)

-Haven't had Manny&Olga's pizza, their chicken is good. At least it was when I had it last, about 10 years ago.

Springvale Roader said...

Ed, if ever the term, "to each his own" applied, it's here. Let's leave the soy cheese aside and just concentrate on the crust and sauce. Since I and Mrs. Springvale Roader have sampled numerous pizza joints in our many vegan years together, we can fairly rank crust and sauce, regardless of the cheese, or lack thereof. Honestly, I don't see how you can laud Four Corners' pizza given the blech factor of its crust and sauce, even when laden with congealed white liquid originally excreted from bovines.

I think I know what it is. I think you go to Four Corners' pub and enjoy so many of their very nicely priced, icy cold brews before ordering your pizza that by the time your order, even a sponge with tomato sauce would taste good (as we say of my father, who is notorious for enjoying anything so long as it had red sauce on it).

I did not know Alberto's would have gone next to a porn shop. Talk about convenience! (don't tell Mrs. Springvale Roader).

Anonymous said...

Z-Pizza is fine for an office pizza party where the boss is paying, but for the life of me I can't figure out how it gets Washingtonian Magazine's "Best Pizza" award (or close to the top). It's pretty boring and often just bad.

Anonymous said...

Z Pizza rates highly because pizza in the D.C. region is, in general, crappy. So, Z Pizza is one of the best choices for crappy pizza, when compared to the competition.

It's like choosing a Pacer over a Yugo, when the folks elsewhere get to choose between Mercedes and BMW's.

Sligo said...

It's obviously not the same as freshly made pizza, but if you want something you can make at home in a pinch, I highly recommend the Freschetta "Brick Oven" style frozen pizzas. Best frozen pizza I've ever had.

Re: z-Pizza. That must have been a prank by the Washingtonian or something. If nothing else, how could it beat 2 Amy's?

Springvale Roader said...

The question is, how can Silver Spring lure a 2 Amy's-quality pizza joint over to our fair community?

Sligo said...

Amazingly, I think this is the most commented on post in the history of this blog.

Ed said...

Springvale we must simply agree to disagree. There must be a lot of us who like FCP because it is always full.

Love 2 Amy's pizza and the appetizer of Polpetti.

Went to a new pizza place Friday in Rockville Town Center, Oro Pomodoro. It was good. They have a section of the menu that pairs mozzarella with tomatoes, olives, etc, I would skip them as they are overpriced. For a place with "tomato" in its name we sadly got a pink 'mater with our mozzarella-tomato pick. OTOH my sister had a great yellow tomato so who knows. Their marinara is sweet and excellent.

What kills me about a place like this is that it would never open here. We do have Olazzo though.

Anonymous said...

"the Freschetta "Brick Oven" style frozen pizzas."

I agree, the difference between this and Z pizza is not too much.

Anonymous said...

socoblogboy mentioned Vicino, which I was looking for in these comments. We had pretty much ruled out everything else Vicino serves as unacceptable, except for the pizza which is nice to eat outdoors on their patio. But the last time we went, despite having obsessively kind service, I would have put all my money on the crust being of the fold-out, cardboard tube, lard-filled variety. It was really depressing, not to mention gross. So I guess we're done with Vicino, as much as I want to be a neighborhood regular.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Anon 1:

You CANNOT diss Vicino. It's not allowed to be done in SS. It's a local, ethnically-owned business that has a shabby space and mundane food. Therefore, it is GOOD. (but don't get me wrong; if it were a national chain it would not be worth darkening the door...)

Anonymous said...

Instead of going to Jerusalem for falafel, just go to Lebanese Taverna. Great bread, savory falafel, creamy tahini. I'd be happier with pickled radish rather than fresh, but it's still excellent. I've never had anything there I didn't like.

Anonymous said...

yes I CAN diss Vicino. I have tried and tried and tried and tried to love that place, but the service is totally nonexistent, the tables aren't really clean, the roach climbing up the wall really grossed me out, and the prices are ridiculous. Pines of Rome has it beat, totally.

Springvale Roader said...

I have to diss Vicino's too, even if George Pelecanos defends it. We went there exactly once, and that was enough. I swear the food was just reheated frozen food. I am eager to support local businesses, but not when they're lousy, as alas, is Vicinos.

As for Lebanese Taverna: I like it very much, but having spent months of my life trekking through Israel, I can say that the falafels at LT pale in comparison. Recently the missus and I went to Max'Israeli Deli in Wheaton. While it came darn close to the real thing, Max' is such a filthy place, and the guy at the falafel bar uses the same utensils to spoon on the meat and vegetable toppings (we're vegans), that we do not plan to go back -- even if they do stock Dr. Brown's Cel-Ray soda. Shame.

WashingtonGardener said...

Isn;t the Tropical Lagoon closed now? Where can I buy my fishfood now inside the beltway? Damn.

For good Falafel - try Middle East Cuisine in downtown TP

I'll defend Vicino's -- never had a bad meal there and service has always been excellent. While at ZPizza service was just inept on my last trip there - couldn't take a simple order (had trouble finding the right register buttons) or prep a salad -- and then burnt our pizza.

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