Micucci’s makes the best pizza in Portland.
I enjoyed Flatbread quite a bit before I made the move to Portland and I still do. Brick oven pizza with some pretty quality toppings, cooked hot and fast. The atmosphere at the Portland Flatbread is also pretty unique and cozy. It gets my vote for the best place in Portland to go out and eat a pie (or share one if you aren’t as gluttonous as me). Not as good as Micucci’s.
Even though it is good I haven’t really heard to many people talk about Flatbread. The pizza I hear the most about in Portland is Otto’s. I have tried a couple of their slices and was pretty happy. I really liked their crust and they offer interesting combinations that you won’t find in most pizza places. It is a really good crispy crust pizza. Still not as good as Micucci’s.
Micucci’s pizza is about as plain as you can get. Crust, a simple sauce, cheese, and a bit of dried herbs sprinkled on but I have never met a pizza that surprised me as much as this one. The dough is like a pillow, ridiculously soft and chewy. The sauce is surprisingly sweet which can be a little weird but it’s just enough to get your attention and it’s perfect on this pizza. They sell it separately as well. Crushed tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, and cane sugar. That’s it. They don’t skimp on the cheese and the whole things is a little too gooey to pick up and eat.
This is not the kind of pizza I usually go for and they don’t offer any variety. The whole setup is a little weird. The pizza can be found in the back room of Micucci’s Grocery. There is a shelf which blocks the kitchen from the *dining area*. If you are lucky that shelf has a slab of pizza on it. If there aren’t any there is usually a paper plate with a time scribbled on it estimating how long you have to wait for the next batch.
*Two tables and seat-less bar against the wall.
After you eat, head to the grocery store register and let them know what you owe them for. This place would be extremely sketchy if their pizza wasn’t amazing.
So…next time you are in Portland around lunch time and wanting some pizza head to this place…
…and look left. That is actually the building across the parking lot from Micucci’s but it looked cool so I took a picture.
For anyone interested I did try to recreate the pizza with mixed results. I ended up with a pizza I enjoyed but not one I would ever crave.
The dough was pretty close with only a couple minor things I would tweak next time. I couldn’t get the sauce right though. If/when I try again I will just make it from scratch and hopefully get the cleaner flavor I was missing.
- 4 1/2 c Bread Flour
- 16 oz Water
- 1 Package Active Dry Yeast
- 2 tsp Salt
- 1/2 c Olive Oil
Throw it in a bowl. Let it double in size then punch it down and let it double again. For me this involved putting it in an oven with a bowl of steaming water on the rack below it.
The Sauce That I Don’t Recommend Replicating Since It Wasn’t Anything Special and You Might As Well Use Whatever You Like:
- 28 oz Crushed Tomatoes
- 3 Large Garlic Cloves (minced)
- 2 Tb Olive Oil
- 3 Big Pinches of Salt
- 3 Big Pinches of Sugar
Sauteed the garlic with the olive oil then just tossed it all together before throwing it on the pizza. (obviously not all of it since that’s quite a bit of sauce)
I used a 9×13 sheet to bake the pizza on and the dough ended up being a bit much for that space so I removed about 1/4 of it. After the sauce I layered on 1/4 lb of mozzarella and a 1/4 lb of provolone then sprinkled with a bit if oregano. Baked it at 425 degrees.
The pizza came out looking pretty good and having a pretty similar feel to Micucci’s. I was pretty happy with the dough but would definitely cut back to at least 2 oz of olive oil next time. The sauce needed some work but shouldn’t be too hard to improve. The cheese wasn’t as salty or flavorful as Micucci’s and so I think I would either salt the top next time or just use better cheese.
So, Micucci’s is still king and for better or worse I will have to travel over there again when I get the itch.MORE>