*As of 2012 this Slice outpost is closed. They are still open on Hudson Street.*
Slice, a spot with gluten-free, dairy-free pizza, how excellent is that?! I've been meaning to check it out since it opened but I haven't until now. One might think with allergies and dietary restrictions I’d be running to a spot like this. But it wasn’t my first impulse.
I usually make do by eating in an upscale resto that cares about their food and their patrons versus eating in a specialty restos that may have a menu more tailored to my dietary needs. Perhaps it stems from past scary experiences with vegetarian spots: back in the day [this means you,Moosewood and Angelica Kitchen], they relied heavily on nutmeats for a protein source and thus scared me away.
So when I read about Slice, I didn’t run, I didn’t walk, I tucked it away as something to try one day. Well, one day became last night. I called a head of time, as I had read that they needed some time to prep the rice crust pizza. And indeed Brian said, “If you like call me 30 minutes ahead of time and I can have it ready when you arrive.” I asked if that was absolutely necessary; it wasn’t but it was an option.
I ordered the half-pie of gluten-free, rice-y cheesed pizza when I walked in the door. The first thing I noticed, and I think their best attribute, is their attention to detail when it comes to food intolerances and allergies. Gloves were changed, my pizza was made in the back away from the wheat flour, ingredients were revealed, and there was an atmosphere of understanding, compassion, and overall we want to feed you not hurt you-ness. Brian was especially helpful, walking me through the process and Slice’s mission.
Now on to the pizza itself. To me, the plain pizza with house-made marinara sauce and rice cheese on rice flour based crust reminded me of Stouffer’s frozen French Bread pizzas that I used to eat when I was a kid [made in the toaster over, yum]. The rice crust dough, when cooled, was hard and gummy but not un-tasty. I mean, seriously now, I finished the whole thing. And half a pizza for one small Allergic Girl equaled quite stuffed. The cheese, when cooled, tasted as fake as it is. It is rice cheese after all, completely manufactured and processed. The major issue for me, in this tasting, was the sauce. The sauce was salty, too orange, thin, and did I mention really salty? I mentioned this to Brian who said it may have been a salty batch; he makes it in the back himself. Ok, could be.
My takeaway from the whole experience was that they really care about their customers’ special needs and that is paramount to me. So, despite some saltiness and the air of Stouffer’s [which isn’t necessarily a bad thing] I would say to any gluten-free person, go forth and eat pizza and enjoy.
Slice, the perfect food
1413 2nd Avenue (73rd/74th Sts)
New York, NY 10021
P. 212 249 4353
F. 212 249 3706