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PostHeaderIcon Amici's East Coast Pizzeria

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Ask a New Yorker where to find good pizza and chances are they’ll tell you it doesn’t exist outside the New York City limits. New York style pizza is renowned for its large size and thin crust. A Los Angeles Times article (March 14, 2009) takes it even further, explaining that New York style pizza “should be less than one-fourth-inch thick until you get about 1 to 1 1/2 inches from the edge; this area should be thicker, with good hole structure, i.e., bubbles.”  The article goes on to explain that the pie should be baked in a wood or coal fired oven until the crust is nearly charred. Mozzarella is the preferred cheese.

There are countless restaurants that claim to be able to reproduce the famous pie, but Manhattanites, still turn their noses up.

So what’s the difference? In 2009, the television show, Food Detectives (Food Network), set out to dispel the claim that it’s the water. The water theory is prevalent. There are pizza joints throughout the country that claim to import New York City tap water to make their pizza. Despite their efforts to put this theory into the “urban myth” category, judges were able to pick out the pizza made with New York City tap water as the “true” New York style pizza.

So how does Danville’s Amici’s East Coast Pizzeria stack up? Friends and I filled a couple of tables recently to find out.

We started the evening with a couple of Amici’s salads: a spinach salad ($7.95) and the large version of an artichoke panzanella salad ($13.75), which easily served four. The spinach salad was filled with great toppings, like roasted red peppers, red onion, tomato, bacon, feta and toasted pine nuts tossed with a lemon basil vinaigrette dressing. The panzanella salad, billed as a classic Tuscan bread salad, included artichoke hearts, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, red onion and capers. It was a bit disappointing. I prefer the bread in my salad to be married with the rest of the ingredients. The bread in Amici’s version is tossed in more like unbaked croutons.

For our pies, we selected two large specialty pizzas. The spicy pepper chicken pizza ($24.95) had sliced chicken breast, mozzarella, roasted red peppers caramelized onions, cilantro, oregano and hot red pepper flakes. This pizza doesn’t come with tomato sauce, but the kitchen happily accommodated us by including it.

The Calabria ($24.95) pizza was topped with mozzarella, provolone, pancetta, and a choice of either green olives or tomatoes. Again we added tomato sauce to the pizza and opted for the green olives. The olives certainly added flavor, but if you’re not a big fan, they can be overwhelming, so opt for the tomatoes instead.

Both pizzas were fabulous – and nary a slice was left. 

The crust was definitely thin and on the charred side and the slices big enough to fold over, but as far as authenticity goes, this native Californian will yield to the yelpers who say it’s the closest you can get in the Bay Area.

I will definitely be a repeat customer.

Amici’s menu also features a dozen or so pastas. Low-carb crust and low-carb pastas are available. Some locations include gluten free options.

Amici’s has several Bay Area locations. Find Amici’s in Danville at 720 Camino Ramon and in Dublin at 4640 Tassajara Road. For a complete menu listing, visit www.amicis.com.

Last Updated (Monday, 21 March 2011 23:40)


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