Letizia’s dates back to an old-time Italian restaurant that opened in Norwalk in the 1930s. Its menu includes pastas with homemade marinara sauce, veal or chicken parmesan dinners of Homeric size, baked ziti and ravioli, salads, and grinders … and all of these things are good. But the item that puts Letizia’s on the Roadfood honor roll is pizza.
It is Neapolitan style, meaning thin-crusted, but not too thin. Around the edge, it rises in a crisp ring of dough thick enough to deliver a bready crunch; in the center, depending on the weight of the toppings, it ranges from firm to slippery-soft. The pizzaioli at Letizia’s make this dough every day, then top it with a choice of ingredients that range from anchovies and broccoli to sausage and sliced tomatoes. Pizzas are brought from the kitchen on broad metal pans, along with small plates, if needed. What you will need, no doubt, is lots of napkins. This is not dainty pizza, and it cannot be eaten any way but messily. In particular, we are fond of the pepperoni pie generously topped with chewy, thin-cut discs, plenty of mozzarella and high-quality sauce, the clam casino pie made from clams, garlic, bacon, cheese, and onion, and the “garbage pie” heaped with a little bit of everything. There are “no cheese” pizzas, white pizzas (mozzarella, ricotta, and romano), and Hawaiian pizzas topped with ham and pineapple.
Letizia’s location is quite nondescript – in a small shopping center on a commercial strip – and the interior is just a simple room with a take-out counter and a few tables. The walls are decorated with New York sports team memorabilia and old photographs that show the history of Letizia’s – always a humble place, but always a beacon of excellence.