He's been wildly successful doing the things he loves, and there are now four more Paulie Gee's locations including Chicago, Columbus, Miami, and Baltimore. I got to meet Paulie last summer at the Pizza Palooza event near Washington DC, and I sampled a slice of his signature pie the Hellboy. Terrific stuff, but I still needed to get to a Paulie Gee's restaurant. For the record, Paulie was warm and genuine - and that was true of nearly every pizzaiolo that day in DC.
|Paulie Gee's Hampden, Baltimore|
|Interior, from the front door|
|Interior dining and kitchen spaces|
|Kitchen and wood-fired pizza ovens|
|Neapolitan with fennel sausage and cremini mushrooms|
My Hellboy shared the same Neapolitan crust, and it was a superb rendition. Each pie was a large personal size yielding six slices (there were no leftovers!). The cornicione was puffy with ideal leopard spotting. The bottom surface was light and soft without being floppy, and there were no wet or soggy spots even though it was prudent to eat the first bite of each slice with knife and fork.
|Perfect leopard spots underneath|
I was a little fearful that the combination of spicy soppressata and the hot honey would make this pie so fiery that I'd not be able to taste the other elements, but it was suprisingly mild. You don't need a lot of heat tolerance to enjoy the modest spiciness that these ingredients deliver. I did find the subtle sweetness of the honey played very nicely with the salty/spicy/savory combination of flavors coming from the sauce, the cheese, and the cured meat.
|From pauliegee.com/hampden. Click for larger image|