I returned to L&B Spumoni Garden the other night. I was "coerced" by a nine-year old.
Rather than the Belt, I took Ocean Parkway to Avenue U: great route. There was a 20 minute wait for a table, so I glanced at the baseball game and then wandered around with the Flip.
Each day, people flock here by the hundreds --maybe thousands -- for L&B's unique and addictive rectangular pies with the sauce on top. And the spumoni. Holy shit: 39,000 fans on their Facebook page and still growing!
After making the two videos, I went back to our table. Salad and some fried zucchini had arrived. Later, Camille -- one of the owners -- confided in me that when she makes fried zucchini, she cuts them in curlycues. Her husband Lenny -- who is also L&B's cook -- cuts them straight. It's safe to assume they're delicate and crispy either way.
My daughter, Julia, and her nine-year old friend, C., asked me if they could accompany me to interview some people.
L&B customers are pure and honest Tri-State. Regular folks, out in Gravesend on a Saturday night, eating square pizza. No need for Manhattan.
I was full after one square -- maybe because of the zucchini -- or because I'd eaten pizza twice already that day. But then I had another. And then I took a third piece and cut it in half, keeping one part, leaving the rest on the tray. My wife shot me a look. She's seen this move a thousand times, along with my lame attempt at self-control. Within five seconds of finishing the first half, I succumbed to the rest. Done.
We ordered dessert. It would be a few minutes. Let's go girls. Who wants to interview someone? "Me!" "Me!" They sounded game (!) -- until we got there :-( Zero interest. Instead they played in the back booth while I did the interviews on my own.
If I embarrassed myself -- it's only because I love pizza so much. Shit, I don't care. I love to talk about pizza.
The place this guy mentioned -- Original on Avenue L -- is a pizzeria I wrote about. Birds, possibly chickens, in the backyard, and now I learn -- they grow their own cabbage! Cabbage for a pizza shop? Gotta find out what they use it for.
So I will head there soon. I must see the birds before it gets too cold. Stroll the paths, smell the sweet Canarsie air, try a slice of their Supreme....
Map L&B Spumoni Gardens (call ahead for days/hours).