Certainly not typical New Jersey Pizza, but I do like it.
However - I think it is a very good example of craft-wood fired Neapolitan that is becoming more common, even here in NJ. Porta isn’t certified but pretty much adheres to the VPN style.
We are fans of Porta pizza and appetizers. The drinks are always well prepared. We just dont head over during crowd season.
The pizzaolo who taught them how to make pizza is certified, though! Roberto Caporuscio (A Mano, Keste, Don Antonio Starita) is/was president of the Association of Neapolitan Pizza Makers, iirc. I know him fro A Mano, and the first time I ate at Porta I took a bite and said “Damn…this is like Roberto’s crust!” Little did I know…and I think it has since been put in the menu; I’ll look next time I go.
On another thread I mentioned meeting @coldbeer70 with @CurlzNJ and that semi-historic meeting occurred at … Porta. That may have been the first or perhaps second HODown we ever had.
Oh, and the pizza is pretty good too. But, I’m sorry, “best in the country” is just fake news
Come on now - we should all know that pizza is like religion - arguing superiority is a pointless exercise.
((Knock knock)) Hello, have you heard the good news???
Anywho…I will go on the record once again to state; I am not a fan of Porta!!!
Their pizza is “good” I won’t argue that, but so is the free, let me repeat that, but so is the FREE pizza at Johnny Mac. (full disclosure free with purchase of a drink and toppings besides cheese is $1 each)
I just have a serious issues going out for pizza and drinks and paying $8-$12 (or more for a martini) for a drink and $10 ± for a personal pie. I also can call less for communal picnic table seating, and I just can’t be bothered with the crowd(s). (Yes Johnny Macs can get packed and I don’t like it either but the pizza is free, let me repeat that, the pizza is FREE!!)
FYI I’m not really directing this at you Wizard, I just wanted to open with the jehova joke.
I’m with you buddy. No pizza is better than free pizza with a 3$ beer. I don’t care if the wood oven was hand built and pizza personally made by Julius Caesar himself!
I feel like I’ve probably said this too many times on the NJ board, but for me the NY/NJ style plain slice, pre-cooked, then reheated in the pizza oven is still tops.
What has since been put on the menu?
At Porta? They update some cocktails and some menu items seasonally…
Desserts are on a separate menu - they tend to rotate also.
I was asking what you were referring to in your post above when you said “it has since been put in the menu.”
Last I checked they replaced their $ 20 pie with a $ 22 pie and a $10 appetizer with a $13 one!!
OOOOOH–sorry! I meant that it now says that Roberto taught their pizzaolos!
So last night my nephew was playing the outdoor stage at the Stone Pony and he wanted to eat afterwards at Porta. I volunteer to go and put our names on the list at Porta. I got there at 5:45 and they told me an hour and 15 mins. Perfect.
I am patient as I sat at the bar and don’t bother the hostess, only asking once and reminding her that I am right there at the bar once our table comes available. At 7 when I see a big table with chairs for the two elderly folk in our group set up, I go ask if we are ready now. She tells me that it may be another hour for us. I usually don’t get upset at restaurants but I went off on her. For me this was completely unacceptable. I made such a stink that she gave us that table, but I shouldn’t have had to do that.
I may never go back.
Poor judgement by one person shouldnt be held against an entire operation. You’re right, the wait was handled poorly but sometimes you need to get loud to get things righted. I hope that in addition to venting here, you contact the restaurant.
If you enjoy the food, bar and vibe of Porta then its worth perserving your enjoyment. Deal with a staff issue separately.
Agree in general, but this is also why I generally steer clear of Porta in July and August. They (like most other restaurants down the shore, imo) can’t handle the crowds. I had a different version of this at JSBBQ a couple of weeks ago, but it wasn’t the staff so much as the portions (uneven across the table) and the quality of the food. Temporary front and BOH staff exacerbates things across the board! I’m ready for local summer—that’s for sure!
As you should know, i would have said keep your table and went to Johnny Mac’s had a drink and a FREE personal pie!!!
Anywho sorry for your aggravation. I will admit two weeks ago a friend of mine had a bunch of tickets to see someone at the Pony, they met before hand for dinner at Porta, I had an appointment prior and couldn’t meet them in time to eat. I did get there as they were finishing so I asked the out-door host if the outside was cigar friendly, he said yes, so I placed a chair in the corner away from everyone grabbed a drink and enjoyed the vibe. Still not an overall fan of the place, but for my first time back in probably 5 years it was enjoyable to have a smoke and a drink.
Honestly, I’m with you. This kind of incompetence turns me off completely from a place. I can’t think of anywhere that I would wait for 2 hours to eat. I get the point made by @Rooster but why you had to get loud to get a table after waiting over an hour is absurd.
And how did I know that @NotJrvedivici would suggest that free personal pie!
I think we’re all right but threshold tolerance as a soon to be paying customer can and will vary. I would have tried for the empty table as you did or dine takeout or chosen another place depending on my mood and hunger but you can be sure I would have contacted the mgmt on the first calmer opp.