Hello Key Biscayne!
Welcome to the food and dining issue! It’s actually only one food: pizza. I’m pretty sure pizza is the most basic need in Maslow’s hierarchy, and it’s definitely the most important thing on the school food pyramid, so I thought I’d tackle our island options.
I ate (almost) every pizza on the Key, in three days. Then I wrote a few paragraphs about each, and after that I realized no one wants to read that much about pizza. Let’s go!
But first, the news
History in the making The 22nd annual Jorge Portela Memorial Give or Take an Inch Fishing and Diving Tournament is this weekend, and if you’re like me, you spent 15 of those years wondering what ‘Give or Take an Inch’ meant in this context (it means you don’t have to be too precise when measuring the fish).
For the uninitiated to what is now a staple of life on the island, The Islander has a short piece remembering Jorge Portela, and explaining the reason for the tournament, written by former mayor
Bob Buzz Vernon.
Heard it before How great would a bayfront park be on the Island? You could take your paddleboard and watch the sunset on the water, while your friends gather ‘round for a picnic while sipping a bottle of wine. That’s how they always pitch it, anyway.
The Parks and Acquisitions Board is suggesting the Village Council lease the bayfront land from Crossbridge Church on Harbor Drive. This isn’t the first time: in the past the church had been less than willing, but now it seems they’re more in need of the money. The board is also suggesting the Council look into buying 571 and 599 Harbor Drive (not on the water) and turning that into a park. Will either of these things happen? Ehhhh 🙄
Catch-22 The Biscayne Nature Center held a lecture last week to talk about the seaweed situation, and a few solutions were offered. Then a bunch of reasons were given why said solutions would not work, and then everyone left saying it was a hard problem to solve. 🏖
🍕🍕🍕 Pizza Party 🍕🍕🍕
These assessments are based solely on the cheese pizza; pizza in its purest form. If the cheese pizza foundation isn’t good, you can’t make it better by putting stuff on top. All pizzas were pickup orders to get the best possible experience.
0 – 3.9 – Inedible.
4 – 5.9 – Chain store pizzas fall in here
6 – 7.9 – Better than average
8 – 8.9 – Go out of your way for this
9 – 10 – Pizza, self-actualized
👍 If you think tofu is exciting you could eat the tomato and cheese from this pizza and get the same effect.
👎 The soggy, rubbery, sweet crust is barely cooked. This pizza is an abomination.
Verdict: If you want a salad on your pizza go to Tutto, it’s the same price. There is no reason to eat this pizza. Imagine being served a school cafeteria pizza, on an airplane. It’s worse than that. But hey, it’s gluten free. 3 / 10
👍 The crust has a good crunch. If you had a good marinara sauce the crust would pass as a mediocre bread stick.
👎 It’s an extra greasy pie with a horrible aftertaste of burnt fryer oil.
Verdict: It’s only $7 for a 14” pie and you can get it at 4am, but you’re better off getting a sandwich. 3.5 / 10
👍 The crust has a good texture, with a nice balance between crispy and bready. The cheese has good stretch without overdoing it.
👎 The fake garlic taste in the dough gets tiring after a few bites. Tomato is non-existent. After a slice or two the Dominos flavors overwhelm the palette.
Verdict: Hits a few good notes, but the whole package is mediocre. 5.1 / 10
👍 Crispy crust. Available by the slice.
👎 Cheese and tomato sauce are bland. Inconsistent prep (this time dough was undercooked on one side of the pizza).
Verdict: I really wanted this pizza to be better, but it misses the mark. If you order it well done, it’s a passable New York slice. 5.4 / 10
👍 A really great crust, flavorful with a good crunch, and visually appealing bubbles. Good proportions with cheese and tomato, and the cheese had the right blend between stretchy and stiff.
👎 Needed salt. If the cheese and tomato were a little more savory, this would be an amazing pizza.
Verdict: Who knew the OC had a pizza oven? The sleeper hit of island pizza. 6.6 / 10
👍 The tomato has a nice acidic tangy taste, and the cheese has a subtle sharpness. Crust is cooked properly, flavorful, and crispy at the edges.
👎 A tad too much tomato sauce. The crust has leftover flour on the bottom creating a sandy texture that does it no favors. Cheese turns stiff really fast, making it a horrible delivery pizza.
Verdict: a good baseline for what a proper pizza should taste like, with no ingredient being left behind. 6.7 / 10
👍 The tomato has a really tasty, tangy bite to it. The crust is crispy at the edges, a layered crunchy/pillowy texture towards the center. The cheese has a mild sharpness to it.
👎 Depending on who is cooking it, the ratios of tomato to cheese can be off.
Verdict: It’s a peculiar pizza where each slice can taste different (the corner, the edge, the middle), but given the attention to ingredients combined with that peculiar style, this pizza is better than the sum of its parts. The beloved Key pizza holds up under pressure. 7.1 / 10
Do you know of any other KB pizzas? Let me know about it. I know Grand Bay has one, but it’s for members only. I suspect the Ritz has one for room service. Am I missing anything?
(If you’re wondering what an 8+ pizza would be, head to Lucali in Miami Beach. I have never eaten a 9+ pizza.)
Last Week's Sales
|CC East 708||1260||2/2||'14 $825k||$975k|
|195 Sunrise 9||689||1/1||'00 $105k||$207k|
|Oceana LPH5N||1730||2/3.5||'14 2.6m||$2.675m|
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I started posting the recent sales, and almost immediately the accusations came of being in the pockets of big KB real estate. The truth is, it was suggested to me that it might be interesting, nothing more. That said, if you want to advertise with the Rag, I’ll take your real estate money, your oil money, your whale hunting money, etc. 🤑
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