There is a special, poignant time when a child surpasses its parent. Sometimes it happens imperceptibly. We had been going to the new De Lorenzo’s Tomato Pies in Robbinsville for quite some time – it’s more pleasant, bigger, faster than the Trenton original, and it has a bathroom. And Sam Amico, the grandson of the first De Lorenzo pizzaiolo, always eagerly asked me, “How do they compare?” At first they didn’t: last year almost to the day, when we had gone to Trenton to the original with our cousin Josh Lurie who is the editor of this site, we felt that the fledgling De Lorenzo’s was not quite as magical as the legendary original. But as we have noted over the past year, the new De Lorenzo’s kept getting more and more satisfying and when we went to the original last month it was the first time we felt it was no better than what we had been getting in Robbinsville. And when we took our friend Larry, who had just treated us to Di Fara’s in Brooklyn, to the De Lorenzo’s in Robbinsville, we felt that at last the changing of the guard was complete. The plain tomato pie we had tonight was classic De Lorenzo, crisp, delicious crust, fine tasting cheese and the vivid tomato top that makes it a Trenton tomato pie – and it was perceptibly better than what we had just had in Trenton. Out with the old and in with the new!
De Lorenzo’s has been written about on this site. This is unique pizza, unlike any we’ve experienced, unlike the wonderful New Haven pies, unlike the Neapolitan facsimiles in New York and Washington, unlike New York City coal oven pizza of the Grimaldi’s and John’s variety, not at all like the deep dish siblings in Chicago. Nor is it quite like other tomato pies in the area. There is a simplicity of the De Lorenzo Tomato pie that defies written description. As far as we know, only in Trenton and Robbinsville at De Lorenzo’s is it possible to experience it.