Your Guide to Authentic Regional Eats
Sign In | Register for Free!
Restaurants Recipes Forums Eating Tours Merchandise FAQ Maps Insider

Modern Apizza

874 State St., New Haven, CT - (203) 776-5306
Posted By Bobby Stone on 8/22/2008 10:39:00 AM
Modern is one of the three best pizza restaurants in New Haven. People in this area take their pizza seriously, given the area's Italian heritage. Most of us in the New Haven area view our pizza as the best in the USA. No small claim but check out any of the three restaurants listed to see if you don't agree.

I've been a resident of the area for almost 60 years. In the 1960's and 1970's you could find good pizza almost everywhere. However things have been slipping for a while and, in the new millenium, Pepe's, Sally's, and Modern (all New Haven) are the only ones still serving old-style Italian/New Haven pizza, which has a thin, slightly burnt, good-tasting crust and a flavorful tomato sauce. Toppings, here in New Haven, only add to a pizza; they don't make it.

I'd rate Pepe's number one, Sally's two, and Modern three, but the differences are small. Expect long lines at any of these restaurants, except in the summer when Yale is gone, and then only on weekdays. None of these restaurants take reservations.

If you are a real connoisseur, order all your pizzas SMALL: it makes them crisper and even better. Also, many old-timers order a "plain" pizza which means no cheese. The crust and sauce are so delicious that toppings really are not needed and can intrude on an already superb product. However, I will confess to enjoying a bacon pizza (less cheese) on occasion.

A white clam pizza should also be enjoyed (clams, no tomato sauce, no cheese). Just garlic, clams, clam juice, and an underlying great bread. Wonderful!

8 out of 8 people found the review helpful. Was it helpful to you?

No Yes

Scorecard

3 - Overall: Excellent - Worth a Detour
Overall: Excellent - Worth a Detour
Rate this place
Although the menu warns that the brick-floored oven can distort the shape of a pizza, Modern's are consistently among the prettiest anywhere.
"Although the menu warns that the brick-floored oven can distort the shape of a pizza, Modern's are consistently among the prettiest anywhere."
Michael Stern





Running at 700 degrees, Modern's brick-floored oven is the source of its pizzas' supreme goodness.
"Running at 700 degrees, Modern's brick-floored oven is the source of its pizzas' supreme goodness."
Michael Stern


The variety of texture among the many meats on an Italian bomb makes this pizza a true tongue adventure.
"The variety of texture among the many meats on an Italian bomb makes this pizza a true tongue adventure."
Michael Stern


You can get a white clam pie with or without mozzarella. We believe the creamy cheese overwhelms this combo's essential delicacy. This pizza is cheeseless. Look at all those clams!
"You can get a white clam pie with or without mozzarella. We believe the creamy cheese overwhelms this combo's essential delicacy. This pizza is cheeseless. Look at all those clams!"
Michael Stern


The small burnt areas of crust around the edge are an essential part of the Modern Apizza experience.
"The small burnt areas of crust around the edge are an essential part of the Modern Apizza experience."
Michael Stern


These are the little bits of burnt semolina that remain on the serving paper once the slices have been eaten.
"These are the little bits of burnt semolina that remain on the serving paper once the slices have been eaten."
Michael Stern


Modern is unique among New Haven's great pizzerias in that it is NOT in the old Italian neighborhood on Wooster Street.
"Modern is unique among New Haven's great pizzerias in that it is NOT in the old Italian neighborhood on Wooster Street."
Michael Stern


A shot of the nicely charred, thin crust - a result of Modern's coal burning oven.
"A shot of the nicely charred, thin crust - a result of Modern's coal burning oven."
Jack Barry


We ordered a 'medium' and thought the kitchen had made a mistake when this broad boy arrived at the table. No, this IS a medium ... but big enough that we took half of it home with us for reheating at lunch today!
"We ordered a 'medium' and thought the kitchen had made a mistake when this broad boy arrived at the table. No, this IS a medium ... but big enough that we took half of it home with us for reheating at lunch today!"
Michael Stern


Modern's menu warns, 'Our brick oven reaches a temperature in excess of 700 degrees. Some pizzas may blacken around the edges and even lose their perfect shape due to contact with the brick floor of the oven.' Amen to that! We love the places were the cheese oozes over the edge and the crust turns crunchy-dark.
"Modern's menu warns, 'Our brick oven reaches a temperature in excess of 700 degrees. Some pizzas may blacken around the edges and even lose their perfect shape due to contact with the brick floor of the oven.' Amen to that! We love the places were the cheese oozes over the edge and the crust turns crunchy-dark."
Michael Stern


Here's a section of crust that didn't blacken in the oven and didn't get flooded out by a cheese spill. It's chewy, full-flavored, and delicious.
"Here's a section of crust that didn't blacken in the oven and didn't get flooded out by a cheese spill. It's chewy, full-flavored, and delicious."
Michael Stern


No, it's not a perfect, symmetrical pizza and the edges are charred (we asked for this one well-done). But such imperfections only add to the beauty of what we consider one of the world's best pizzas.
"No, it's not a perfect, symmetrical pizza and the edges are charred (we asked for this one well-done). But such imperfections only add to the beauty of what we consider one of the world's best pizzas."
Michael Stern


About that charred edge. I happen to love it, but if you do not, there is plenty of uncharred, chewy crust to enjoy on a Modern pie.
"About that charred edge. I happen to love it, but if you do not, there is plenty of uncharred, chewy crust to enjoy on a Modern pie."
Michael Stern



What is Roadfood?  |   Submit Content  |   Privacy Policy  |   Contact Roadfood.com   Copyright - Roadfood.com