Paul Giannone, a/k/a Paulie Gee, says one of his favorite memories at his eponymous Greenpoint pizzeria, Paulie Gee's, was "when Danny Meyer came in to the restaurant with his family on a Saturday night at 8 p.m. and waited 90 minutes for a table. Twice. The second time was the biggest compliment paid to me." It should be noted that waiting for a table is actually pleasant here — you drink beers handed down from the abnormally high bar, enjoy the carefully curated music selection, and chat with your neighbors. But Meyer's willingness to stick it out twice — that’s confirmation that Giannone's parlor, which opened in 2010, holds its own among the Brooklyn pizza institutions the owner has long worshipped. Easing into retirement from a career in IT, Giannone resolved to open a pizzeria. To that end, he built a pizza oven in his garden and commenced to study the craft. “I used it to practice, experiment, and market myself to pizza enthusiasts/bloggers and potential investors,” he says. Today you’re likely to find him working the dining room and maybe even delivering your cheekily named pie, its blistered crust paved with tangy tomato sauce and browned mozzarella and topped with one of dozens of combinations of ingredients — like spicy soppressata and Mike's Hot Honey (the “Hellboy”), or braised fennel, anisette cream, and guanciale (“Anise and Anephew”). His philosophy, Giannone says, is to "offer a neighborhood dining experience, not a box with pizza in it."
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