Spare me ‘The Woiks’
Nu Yalk Pizza3305 Kietzke Ln.
Reno, NV 89502
I’ve never had any desire to go to Nu Yalk Pizza because of the name. Of course, I know what the person who named the place was aiming to do, but that phonetic spelling of “York” as “Yalk” is just wrong to me. It’s more “Yoahk.”
One recent night, I decided to put aside my prejudices and give it a try.
In keeping with the phonetic theme, we went for “The Woiks,” any two meats and three vegetables. I had no idea pizza could be so expensive: the 12-inch version of “The Woiks” is $14.46; the 15-inch costs $21.95; and they demand $29.49 for an 18-inch.
Michael and I did a little comparison with real New York City pizza. We discovered that for $23, we could get a 16-inch pizza with four meats and four vegetables at by far the best pizza joint on earth, John’s of Bleecker Street in Greenwich Village. Sadly, our taste buds were not impressed with the higher-priced, poor phonetic imitation that’s been in Reno since 1978.
I decided to give the Nu Yalkers the benefit of the doubt—could it be that we have superior palates? It turns out we do. Several of my daring co-workers (all of whom have submitted applications to Fear Factor) participated in what I called The Great Reno Pizza Experiment. I offered them our leftovers the next day at work if they agreed to comment on the crust and toppings and tell me what they thought would be a fair price for a 15-inch.
The consensus in the office was that it was a yummy pizza and they’d eat it again, but only for about $15. Everyone was able to identify the toppings: black olives, chunks of garlic, sausage, mushrooms and pancetta (Italian bacon). Specific comments included that the sauce had a slightly grainy texture, the pancetta overpowered the other flavors, and the mushrooms seemed OK. One strange fellow even said the only time he can tolerate olives is on pizza.
Regarding the crust—it was soggy when we had it fresh, certainly not the cracker crust we were hoping for. Those who tried the pizza the day after thought it did not benefit from re-reheating in the microwave. Everyone surmised that under normal circumstances, i.e., fresh out of the oven, it might taste better.
I then conducted the Nu Yalk Pizza dessert experiment. I cut a piece of their shortbread ($1.34) into pieces and set it on the counter where everyone would see it right after lunch. The 20 bite-sized cubes were wolfed down in a matter of minutes. Perhaps the most significant comment was that it could have been a bit more buttery
Susan (not her real name) wrote: "Who the heck thinks about ordering shortbread at a pizza place—although I do enjoy the density of this shortbread. Very filling when you don’t have anything else for lunch. Woe is me, I’m hungry."