Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Victor Village Inn
One of the labels I've created for this blog (on the left sidebar) is "bar." I figured people might like to know which pizzerias also have bars, and which bars also serve pizza.
Aside from that, in some parts of the country, "bar pizza" is a distinct variety of pizza, usually very thin, maybe oily, and probably crunchy. Kind of a bar snack while you're drinking.
Around here, the bars and bar/restaurants where they make pizza from scratch generally don't share a common style. Acme (which I need to get back to sometime) serves more or less New York style pizza, Canandaigua's Green Front does a pizza that's thin and supple, and of course there are all the wood-fired pizzerias, many of which have bars as well.
But a lot of bars in this area that serve pizza don't make it from scratch, at least not the dough. They tend to use premade crusts, to which they simply add toppings and bake.
Not that that's necessarily a bad thing, or that such pizza can't be good. I think the best pizzas nearly always start with fresh dough, but I've had some pretty decent pizza made with preformed crusts or pizza "shells." For that matter, I've had some pretty bad pizza that was baked with house-made, fresh dough. So the type of dough or crust - fresh, frozen or otherwise - is a factor, but only one factor, in the end result.
To get back to the subject of bar pizza, to the extent that there is such a style in the Rochester area, I'd have to say that it is characterized by those premade crusts. They tend to produce a pizza that's uniform in thickness, maybe a little crunchy, and sometimes oily underneath, depending on how it was baked.
A good example of this style, in more ways than one, can be found at the Village Inn in Victor. What I mean by that is that the VVI's pizza is typical of local bar pizza, and qualitatively, it is in fact pretty good.
I recently stopped in to pick up a small pepperoni pie. The crust was thin, crunchy, and rather dry. I don't know for a fact that it was premade, in other words not freshly made on the premises, but it seemed that way. There was a little oil underneath, but I think some of that had seeped down from the toppings.
Speaking of which, the sauce was quite generously applied, which was fortunate, as it added some much-needed moisture to balance out the dry crust. And I liked the sauce - it had a straightforward tomato flavor, and a medium consistency. Very basic, but flavorful.
The mozzarella was still hot when I first examined it, and was rather gloppy, though it did firm up a little as the pie cooled. It was nicely melted and just slightly browned. It was a little bland, but was certainly preferable to the cheap stuff that some places use, that turns to oil-coated, dried-out plastic in the oven.
The pepperoni was pretty good too. It was thin, slightly greasy, nicely crisped, and evenly distributed.
The Victor Village Inn offers a basic bar menu of pizza, wings, and burgers, and fried fish. Pizzas come in three sizes, with nine available toppings. Pizza is generally not available until around 6:00.
This pie was a little sloppy to eat, what with all the sauce and the melted cheese. And while the crust wasn't the greatest, it wasn't bad, and its shortcomings were to some extent compensated for by the toppings. All in all, this was a decent bar pie.
I don't think I can quite give this a B--I wouldn't go out of my way to get this--but a C seems a little low. So while I've been trying to stay away from pluses and minuses, I'm making an exception here and giving the Victor Village Inn's pizza a solid C+, for this pretty good bar pie
Victor Village Inn, 34 E. Main St., Victor