I enjoy making pizza from scratch. I plan ahead and make my dough, get some great ingredients assembled, and have fun rolling out little pies and baking them on my pizza stone. There are times when I am too busy to go through the whole pizza process, so we look towards others to supply our pies. When we first moved to Boulder (more than 5 years ago now) we’d go to Lefty’s since we live in Gunbarrel and it is close to us. We’d often bring the pizza home and put it in the oven for a while to crisp it up a bit.
Then we heard about this place called Proto’s
. We gave it a try and loved it. For the past couple years we’d usually go to Proto’s for pies whenever I decided not to cook. It was a reliably delicious decision.
We hadn’t been to Proto’s in a while, and, while downtown recently, decided to give the new BOP
a try. Result? A soggy bottom in the middle of the pizza by the time we got it home.
The very next week I was working at a dinner party downtown until quite late, so I planned to pick up some pizzas. We (though I state clearly here that it WAS NOT my idea) decided to try BOP once again since it was conveniently located close to the party where I was working. Result? A soggy bottom again.
I’m sorry. I’m not trying to be a pizza snob, but a soggy bottom is just totally unacceptable to me in a pizza.
So, back to my story… The soggy bottom pies led to a conversation reminiscing of Proto’s pies and how good they were. We had just eaten pizza two weekends in a row, so we weren’t about to go to Proto’s just for the hell of it. But, we recalled it fondly.
Fast forward a few weeks and we decided to try Basta
, the new pizza place in the Peloton. We were pleased with Basta- they have a wood-fired oven, nice toppings, crisp crust, nice wines, etc. We had a good meal and tried to compare it to Proto’s. It had now been quite some time since eating a Proto’s pie, so we had trouble comparing. We knew Basta made good pies. That was for sure.
Fast forward another few weeks and we decided it was time to try Proto’s
again. We were replacing our floors- ripped out the carpet and laid down a wood floor on a Friday night until past 10:00 pm. I showered first so I could pick up our pies and was SO EXCITED and hungry and Friday is clam pizza night, which is FANTASTIC! And then the news… Proto’s closes at 10. We called at 10:30 to place an order for pick-up. Worst. Moment. Ever.
I whipped up something… oh yeah, I remember now. Nachos.
The next day we were laying down floors and getting our place in order until 9 pm. Not too late for Proto’s! Just no clam pizza. OK. So, I picked up our pizzas, brought them home, opened the box and smiled, and took my first bite. I instantly declared it to be the best pizza I’ve had in Boulder. Hands down. Thin, crisp crust. Not too many ingredients, but good ingredients. Not too doughy. Just right. Just right.
This pizza taste-test led to a conversation with someone who had purchased a BOP pie. I warned her of the soggy bottom. We talked of Proto’s and Basta, as well as Abo’s
, a place I had never frequented for a pie. The same week my friend with whom I discussed pizzas gave me a gift certificate to Abo’s. Cool… let the pizza pie challenge continue.
And so, I bought some Abo’s, brought it home, and was absolutely shocked at how big, dense, and heavy this pie was. Seriously. Big, dense, and heavy is all I can think of to describe the pie. I’m just not into that kind of pie. I don’t want that much crust and that many toppings. That’s just not enjoyable pizza to me.
The bottom line:
Proto’s is the best pie
. I know there are people making great pies in Boulder, like Laudisio
, which is always a fabulous pie. But I’m talking here specifically about pizza places where lots of customers order pies for take out. I’m talking about places that really specialize in pizza, not gourmet restaurants that also make pizza.
Proto’s wins my unofficial pizza challenge
I need to edit this- My new fav is Pizzeria da Lupo! No doubt about that one!
Where’s your favorite place to get a pie in Boulder. Let me know. I’ll check it out and add it to my pizza challenge.