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A Walk Down Boston Ave From Your Tri-State Area Pizza Experts

Supreme_pizza

The Contenders: Pizza Days, Espresso, Nick’s, Pranzi’s, Helen’s, Dominos, Cristo’s

 The Experts: Wishing to remain anonymous we have Thing 1Thing 2, and occasionally myself. Hailing form New Jersey and New York, respectively, Thing 1 and Thing 2 are self-proclaimed pizza lovers who are honestly, without a doubt, the most passionate pizza-eaters I have ever met.

Criteria: Taste, Quality, Crust, Price/Convenience, Guilt

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PIZZA DAYS
Thing 2: “Pizza days is to Dominos as Dominos is to real pizza.”
Thing 1: “Pizza Days is one of the only pizzerias opened right next to an auto shop which may or may not affect the taste…”

Taste:
Thing 1: “Somewhat artificial. If you like fake-tasting pizza, this is a good choice. The sauce is above average but not perfect.”

Quality:
Thing 2: “Not a quality type of pizza, but it’s just what you need at 3AM.”
Thing 1: “Well… I don’t really know what’s in it – ingredient wise – but it works.”

Crust:
Thing 2: “Really good. I would go so far to say it’s delicious.”
Thing 1: “That’s a stretch, it’s still fake pizza crust.”
Thing 2: “True. But it tastes good.”
Thing 1: “True.”

Price/Convenience:
Thing 2: “Definitely worth the price.”
Thing 1: “It’s a big part of the appeal.”

Guilt:
Thing 2: “None. All pizza is guilt free.”
Thing 1: “No. High. Like Netflix asking you if you’re still there level.”
Thing 2: “Can’t go wrong with free delivery though.”
Thing 1: “True. Very convenient. Open till 3AM every night, what more could you want?”

Pizza Days is the old friend you should probably stop hanging out with but you have too much fun with them.

Thing 1: 3/5
Thing 2: 3/5
Me: 3/5

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Real picture of a Pizza Days’ pie

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ESPRESSO
Thing 2: “The garlic cheesy bread is fantastic… I’ve had more not pizza than pizza there but the slices are solid and big.”
Thing 1: “Overall impression is good. New York-style pizza. Good value, open late.”

Taste:
Thing 2: “Slightly greasy. Very cheesy… in a good way!”
Thing 1: “Real pizza. It really is good. Would recommend.”

Quality:
Thing 2: “Very big slices, but can sometimes be abnormally shaped… like scalene triangles.”
Thing 1: “High quality. You can actually tell what they put in it, which is nice. Tastes realer.”

Crust:
Both: “Solid.”
Thing 1: “Crispier.”
Thing 2: “Still crusty though, what you want.”

Price/Convenience:
Thing 1: “Definitely worth the price, good and open late. Good no matter what state you’re in.”
Thing 2: “The kind of place I go to get a slice and something else.”
Thing 1: “Not sure if I agree.”
Thing 2: “It’s just that all the food is very good, you know?”

Guilt:
Thing 1: “No guilt.”
Thing 2: “None. It’s a real pizza place.”

Espresso is your reliable straightedge uncle who grew up in New York and always brings you presents that are free from work.

Thing 1: 4/5
Thing 2: 5/5
Me: 4/5

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Real picture of an Espresso’s pie

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NICK’S
Thing 2: “Good. More of a restaurant-y feel, people are real friendly.”
Thing 1: “Pretty nice place to eat inside.”

Taste:
Thing 1: “Good. On the cheesier side, solid piece of pizza, pretty real (though our standard of real is NY/NJ style of pizza.)”
Thing 2: “Pretty good, more firm. Definitely not fast food… More of a place to eat than to order.”
Thing 1: “Yeah. It’s not like Pizza Days where you feel like it’s order only because the seating is taken up by cars.”

Quality:
Thing 1: “High.”
Thing 2: “But slightly below Espresso.”
Thing 1: “Yes, but still on a similar scale though definitely denser than Espresso (which is a thinner crust.) Still feels high quality to me.”

Crust:
Thing 2: “Nothing of note.”
Thing 1: “Solid, on the better side.”

Price/Convenience:
Thing 2: “Got an individual slice so it was smaller than the pie, slightly expensive for the size. It was like New York cost, aka more than it should be.”
Thing 1: “Got a large pie, so slices were pretty average sized, maybe slightly on the smaller side. But certainly worth the price.”
Thing 2: “Definitely worth the price if someone else pays for it.”
Thing 1: “Well that’s true of all pizza.”
Thing 2: “I would rather sit-in than order out.”
Thing 1: “I disagree, I would order from there too, which is pretty unique compared to the other places we are discussing.”

Guilt:
Both: “No guilt.”

Your kinda cool older cousin who you always look up to even when you realize he’s dope but not a god.

Thing 1: 4/5
Thing 2: 4/5
Me: 4/5

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Picture of Nick’s pizza slices taken from someone’s Instagram account off the internet – use your judgment on this one, friends

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PRANZI’S
Note on Pranzi’s: While our experts have not had a ton of experience here they enjoy it and would also like y’all to know that they have dope chicken platters and encourage you to check the place out. Also the guy is an exceptionally nice dude.

Your best friend’s older brother who has an awesome life and you want to get to know better because he’s really nice and sometimes hangs out with the younger kids.

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Picture of cheese slice from Pranzi’s from the interwebs

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HELEN’S
Obviously, Helen’s is better known for their blue zone… but Thing 1 and I have had their pizza and will review that separately.

The Blue Zone:

Thing 1: “Dope. Always just what you need, no matter when you eat it. The small is a perfect size for one when you’re up late on the weekend… Supposedly you can get really good custom calzones that my friends have spoken highly of. It is pretty guilt-inducing. Of the things that are open late into the morning its probably the best option for greasy Italian food. Yeah, I would probably take a blue zone over pizza, not consecutively… doesn’t hold up to repeated use that well but overall, dope.”


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Internet image of a Blue Zone

The Za:

Taste:
Thing 2: “Very different taste between the cheese and pepperoni .I thought the cheese slice was reminiscent ofEllios and Cheez-its, but the pepperoni was more flavorful.”
Thing 1: “Surprisingly light, in an airy way – not a very dense pizza vis a vis Pizza Days.”

Quality:
Thing 1: “Pretty good quality, the same level as Espresso or Nick’s.
Thing 2: “I’d disagree, the cheese slice was poor quality but the pepperoni was decent.”

Crust:
Thing 1: “Okay but not great.”
Thing 2: “I found it had an unusual flavor.”

Price/Convenience:
Me: “Since it’s just as much as other open options in the area, and you’re with a flexible group I, personally, wouldn’t choose to go there because it is the same price…”
Thing 2: “I wouldn’t go in during the day, a little expensive.”
Thing 1: “A little pricey, and frankly I think it’s okay not that good.”

Guilt:
Thing 1: “No guilt.”
Thing 2: “I still felt hungry after so I guess that’s good?”

Helen’s is like your pre-major advisor; you sort of have to go but you don’t really value their advice – unless their advice is a blue zone in which case you should eat their advice when you’re drunk. 

Thing 1: Cheese 2.5/5, Pepperoni 3/5
Thing 2: Blue Zone 5/5, Pizza: 3/5
Me: Cheese 2/5, Pepperoni 3/5

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Real picture of Helen’s slices

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DOMINO’S

It’s like every other Dominos in the world. You know what you’re doing.

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Definitely not a real image of  a “Domino’s pizza pie”

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CRISTO’S
Note: Only Thing 2 has been here.
Thing 2: “The most New York of all the pizza places – even more than Espressos – that I’ve eaten since coming to Tufts.”

Taste:
Thing 2: “Real good, a solid slice, pretty big, not that greasy, kind of a firm slice. Scrumptious.”

Quality:
Thing 2: “On the thinner side, the kind of place that you run into to eat a quick slice of pizza and then leave… Which is what you want from a pizza place.”

Crust:
Thing 2: “Nothing significant about it.”

Price/Convenience:
Thing 2: “Worth it. Pricier, but you get what you pay for.”

Guilt:
Thing 2: “None. I felt comfortable. The guys who worked there were not too friendly but in a good way. They did their jobs.”

The grandpa whose, even though he’s a little physically ill, memory is as sharp as ever. He’ll tell you great war stories though he wasn’t in the war.

Thing 2: 5/5

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Picture of Cristo’s pie from TripAdvisor

-Lauren Samuel

Cover photo source.

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