Back in February (as you might guess from the photo) I stopped at Pizzeria Nove in Spencerport, which holds the distinction of being one of the only pizzerias around here that’s in a bowling alley. (There is at least one other that I know of, ZiaMo's in Honeoye Falls). It's located in the same building as Spencerport Bowl, to which it is connected by an interior door and walk-up window.
I’ve known about Pizzeria Nove for some time, but it took me a while to get there, as I never seemed to be able to figure out when it was open. Either they had erratic hours or I was just calling at the wrong time.
I finally succeeded in finding them open on a Saturday afternoon, although it took some doing. I called at about 1 p.m., and got an recording stating that Pizzeria Nove would be closed for the day on the preceding Tuesday due to personal reasons. Figuring that they had simply neglected to update the outgoing message, I called the bowling alley to see if they knew when the pizzeria might be open.
That’s when things got a little strange. The youngish-sounding female employee told me that the guy who runs the pizzeria wouldn’t be in until "after noon." (Again, this was at about 1:00.) The rest of the conversation went something like this:
Me: I’m sorry?
She: He won’t be in until after noon.
Me: Well, it’s 1:00 now.
Me: You said he’d be in after noon?
Me: But it’s 1:00 right now.
She: Right. He’ll be in after noon.
Me: Uh, OK. Thanks.
And then I hung up.
I never did figure that one out, but a couple hours later I called Pizzeria Nove and the guy was there. Seizing the opportunity, I ordered a large cheese pie.
This pizza had a medium thick, screen baked crust. It was just a little crisp underneath, but a bit gummy at the interface between the crust and the sauce. The crust was rather chewy, making it the kind of crust you tend to tear off with your teeth, more than bite through. The narrow edge, though, did have a nice balance between outer crunch and interior breadiness.
This was a pretty saucy pizza, with a bright-tasting sauce that was more tomatoey than herbal. The browned cheese was moderately applied, with some islands (lakes? ponds?) of sauce poking through.
Pizzeria Nove’s pizza menu offers a variety of choices: red, white or pink sauce; thick, thin or “normal” crust (“regular” might be a better choice of adjective there), as well as deep dish pizza; seventeen available toppings; and ten specialty pizzas. They also serve wings, calzones, burgers and hots, and various sides. The pizzeria itself is strictly takeout and delivery, although you can eat it in the bowling alley if you don’t mind the sound of crashing pins.
There were things I liked about this pizza, and things I didn’t. In spite of the relatively generous helping of sauce, I found this to be a little too crust-dominated. The sauce and cheese seemed nearly overwhelmed by the crust. Probably it would have been better balanced had I ordered a thin crust.
Also, the crust itself was only OK. The dough tasted fine, but the underside was none too crisp, and the interior was too chewy for my liking. The edge wasn’t bad, though, and if the rest of the crust had the same balance of crispness and breadiness as the edge, this could’ve been a rather good pizza. And on the plus side, the flavors as a whole were good, and it was a well made pie, no obvious defects or signs of carelessness, so I’ll give it a C+.
Pizzeria Nove, 45 Nichols St., Spencerport 349-NOVE (6683)
Mon., Tue., Thu. 4 p.m. - 9 p.m., Fri. 4 p.m. - 11 p.m., Sat. 11 a.m. - 11 p.m., Sun. noon - 6 p.m. Closed Wed.
NOTE: Pizzeria Nove closed at the end of March 2009.