December 6, 2019

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Prized pies

Wall Street Slice offers New York-style slices

Opinion

New York-style pizza pies are big, with individual slices so wide fans like to eat them folded in half with the olive oil dripping out the end. (You can watch YouTube how-to videos for tips on this, or old Sopranos episodes.)

Wall Street Slice, a new West End destination from a few of the people behind Red Ember, specializes in New York-style pizza with some terrific prairie add-ons, and the results are really good.

Crust is crucial for New York pizza, and at Wall Street Slice it’s perfect. (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press)

Crust is crucial for New York pizza, and at Wall Street Slice it’s perfect. (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press)

Crust is crucial for New York pizza, and at Wall Street Slice it’s perfect — thin as a classic Italian crust, but richer and crispier and so good you won’t be leaving the edges on your plate.

In terms of toppings, there’s slightly more heft than a traditional Neapolitan-style pizza, but not to the point of gloppiness, which New Yorkers leave to Chicagoans and their deep-dish madness.

At Wall Street, you can customize your own pie with toppings picked from a long list, many of them luxed-up versions of classic pizza fare: the onions are meltingly caramelized, the garlic is roasted, the bacon comes from Berkshire hogs raised by Zinn Farms and the turkey sausage is house-made.

You can also choose from six named pizzas, as well as rotating specials that highlight well-balanced, nicely considered ingredient combos.

Restaurant Review

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Wall Street Slice
753 Wall St.
204-221-7272; wallstreetslice.com

Go for: fabulous, foldable New York-style pizza
Best bet: anything — anything! — on a pizza crust
Slices: $3.50-4.75; whole pies: $25.50-36.00

Tuesday-Thursday: 11:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m.; Friday-Saturday: 11:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.; Sunday: noon-8:00 p.m.

Delivery: No, but you can pre-order for pick-up

★★★★1/2 

Purists can enjoy the O.G., which focuses on a distinct but gentle tomato sauce and a trio of good cheeses. The Pepperoni Prince gets a boost from slices of house-cured pepperoni — small, spicy and intense — and Sicilian oregano.

The T-Bird is a fresh mix of turkey sausage, with an undertone of fennel, kale pesto and creamed feta, while the Whiteout is a white pizza that’s rich but subtle. In the Lush Mush — a recent special — the fat little mushrooms are roasted dark, but not dried out, and you can smell the truffle oil.

The Toba Tiki offers a valiant defence of the controversial pineapple-on-pizza position by roasting the pineapple and upgrading the ham to pulled Berkshire pork.

This is a tight menu, so the only items other than pies are garlic rolls and a caesar salad.

Wall Street Slice is a new West End destination from a few of the people behind Red Ember. (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press)

Wall Street Slice is a new West End destination from a few of the people behind Red Ember. (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press)

The rolls, served with a choice of dip, feature soft, golden pull-apart bread absolutely steeped in garlic, with roasted garlic on top, garlic confit in the middle — mellow and soft enough to spread — as well as an underlying pool of garlic butter. You can even quadruple-down by getting garlic aioli as a dip, but we went with basil oil, which was verdant and lovely.

The caesar salad includes standout ingredients. The pancetta is thin and cooked into crispy, delicate shards, and there’s a haze of Parmesan on top. There’s a practical issue, however. Though overdressed caesars left to get all smooshy are one of the banes of restaurant eating, this untossed version, served with some drizzles of thick dressing, is just too hard to mix at the table, and a lot of the lettuce ended up bare.

There are house-made sodas — the grapefruit has a lot of zip — along with organic red and white wine by the bottle (but not by the glass). Prosecco is available in a small, adorable individual serving, and the two beer options include a New England IPA from Barn Hammer (just down the street) and the St. James Pale Ale from Half Pints.

The long and narrow space has an industrial feel. While this bare-bones wood-and-metal look can be an overdone trend, it feels right here. This stretch of Wall Street is, after all, in an industrial district, though the resto is located in a small pocket of good food and drink that includes Sleepy Owl Bread and the soon-to-be-opened Wolseley Kombucha.

The rolls, served with a choice of dip, feature soft, golden pull-apart bread absolutely steeped in garlic. (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press)

The rolls, served with a choice of dip, feature soft, golden pull-apart bread absolutely steeped in garlic. (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press)

The tables seem vast when you first sit down — almost too far to reach the person sitting across from you — but when the food starts coming, you realize this is necessary square footage to handle those giant pies. Service is cheerful, with counter order and table delivery, and an informal mix of disposable and more substantial dishes and cups.

Snagging a seat might take a while during the lunch and dinner rushes, but the food is worth the wait. And New York-style pizza can always be eaten standing up using that patented NYC "fold hold." You can also order ahead for pick-up.

Prices for a whole pizza might sound high, but these pies are big, really big. If there are any leftovers, Wall Street Slice’s product passes the all-important cold-pizza-for-breakfast test.

alison.gillmor@freepress.mb.ca

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