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Grab a bite at three new hot spots for pies

BY JEN MURPHY — Fall 2018

ome’s ubiquitous pizza al taglio (“pizza by the cut”) — defined by its airy dough, rectangular shape, and cracker-crisp crust — has invaded America. At pizzaiolo Gabriele Bonci’s Pizzarium in Rome, the pies are so magical that Bonci has been called “the Michelangelo of dough.” In June 2017, he opened his first eponymous pizzeria outside of Italy in Chicago’s West Loop (312-243-4016; bonciusa.com). Just as in Rome, staffers slice them with scissors and price them by the pound. With the restaurant an instant sensation, he followed up with a second, larger Bonci (872-829-3144; bonciusa.com) in Wicker Park in April.

The al taglio trend has also popped up on the coasts. In March, highly respected Italian pizzaiolo Angelo Iezzi opened PQR (pqr-nyc.com) on New York City’s Upper East Side in collaboration with Fabio Casella, owner of local pizzeria San Matteo. At PQR, a casual, counter-service space, Iezzi uses a higher water content and longer fermentation time for his dough, yielding ethereal squares with fewer carbs and more protein than a standard pizza.

In LA, bread queen Nancy Silverton and longtime collaborator chef Matt Molina have been selling seasonal, scissor-cut slices by the ounce at Triple Beam Pizza (323-545-3534; triplebeampizza.com) since February. The Highland Park spot has plenty of vegan and vegetarian-friendly pies.

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Pucks Classic Lives On

It’s brash for an Austrian chef to reimagine one of Italy’s most beloved foods. But in 1982, Wolfgang Puck debuted a smoked salmon pizza with caviar at his original LA Spago to instant acclaim. The now iconic dish served at Oscars after-parties remains as popular as ever, with Las Vegas as proof. At his new Spago at Bellagio Resort & Casino — after a 25-year-run, Puck closed the original Vegas outpost at the Forum Shops earlier this year — the chef added wood-fired, market-inspired pizzas such as prosciutto, fig, burrata, and arugula as menu exclusives, but he says the signature decadent pie still holds its own on the Strip. 702-693-8181; wolfgangpuck.com — J.M.

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