Smith & Lentz’s pepperoni pie

There’s a moment in the oven when good pepperoni, with the help of several hundred degrees, begins to curl on top of a pizza. Slowly, each slice of meat starts to render just a little, leaving tiny pools of pork fat in the bottom as the sides form little bowls. If the pizza is cooked properly, it will stay under the heat until the very top edges of the meat begin to blacken just a touch. This is what has happened on every Pepperoni Pie I’ve ordered at East Side brewery Smith & Lentz. It’s a sublime combination of simple, classic flavors: crushed-tomato sauce, garlic, mozzarella and oregano. A small drizzle of hot honey adds an occasional sweet note. Pizza inspires passions, and everyone has a favorite. But no one is making a better pie right now than Smith & Lentz.

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