Artichoke Basille’s Pizza
328 East 14th St
Let me tell you something guys, if it’s one thing that NYC is universally known for, it’s probably the pizza. Most states in the U.S. have their own regional variation of the pie, some hardly resemble the Italian import. That being the case, many of the people who both live in and travel to this city can tell you, the pizza is good. And when I say the pizza, I don’t mean pizza hut, or domino’s, or papa johns even; no, I mean Ray Bari, Famous Famiglia, and Famous Rays just to name a few. But Da Undercard isn’t about the big dogs, it’s about the small guys on the rise, and these guys are exactly that. I introduce to you: Artichoke Basille’s Pizza.
Cousins Francis Garcia and Frank Basille opened the pizza spot in Greenwich Village back in 2008, and since then the place has become somewhat of a local legend. With business hours slated as Mon-Sun 10am-6am, you know these guys mean business, and business is good. At first glance (and second, and third) the place looks like…well, nothing. It’s a small tucked away spot on 14th between 1st and 2nd ave, but the line of people (drunk and sober) outside drooling over the hot slices the people coming out are inhaling lets you know you’ve found it. After waiting for a bit in line, you finally make you’re way inside.
Once in, you see a barrel containing cold beer for sale (Pizza and beer, who knew?), but what probably will really catch your attention is the first time you lay eyes on an artichoke pie fresh out the oven. The aroma is lite and buttery, the pie is massive, and the guy behind the counter divvies it up into six large slices. Each slice is almost five bucks, but once you take your first bite into it, you know it was a worthy investment. It tastes like…like…someone is shooting a porno in your mouth; very sexy. By time you manage to make your way through the crowd of people inside to go back out, you’ve probably already taken like five good bites out of it, and still have a ways to go. You probably didn’t even notice the lamp from A Christmas Story, didn’t you?
While it’s true that most people come far and wide for the Artichoke slice…or pie if you’re looking to overindulge, the pizza place has more to offer. They have they classic Margarita, Sicilian slice, and even a crab and ricotta slice which is delicious hot or cold (but mostly hot), and the best part is if you’re sweet tooth starts tugging at your gums, you can get some awesome zeppoles right next door. So while Artichoke Basille’s may be hard on your wallet (and arteries), the flavor more than makes up for it. So grab you a slice, and tell em Doom sent you.
- Francis Garcia and Sal Basille know their pie on ‘Pizza Cuz’ (nydailynews.com)