For us, becoming your neighborhood pizzeria involves more than the great pizza and other East Coast-inspired Italian dishes.
At Tomato Pie Pizza Joint, our eclectic mix of design, recipes and music is meant to pay homage to the things that seem to be increasingly missing from the fabric of our culture: respect, consistency, quality, progressive thinking and a responsibility to the community. And not to sound self-aggrandizing, but we’re out to change people’s lives.
While we engage in many proactive efforts to do this—separating our trash for recycling; donating product and time to support local schools and charities; training a diverse group of workers to shine separately while bonding into a highly productive team—there is a hoped for goal that is hard to quantify. And that is by bringing our positive attitude to the community, it will spill over to the lives of our customers and neighbors.
It may sound a little lofty for a pizza joint, but we believe it and, more importantly, we practice it on a daily basis. As someone once said, you have to know where you’re headed in order to get there. And we happen to think a damn good slice of pizza is great accompaniment for the journey.
A good, satisfying, hot and melty, crisp and chewy New York style slice of pizza in Los Angeles…served in a fun, inviting and colorful atmosphere…by a staff who knows the product and who genuinely cares about providing a good dining experience.
“Oh for cryyyyyinnng out loouud!!!!”
That was my dad’s reaction whenever he didn’t buy a word I was saying—and it was pretty much my reaction after moving to the West Coast and trying to find a decent slice of "pie" in a decent place to eat it.
For ten years, I sampled a slice at every place that called itself authentic “New York style pizza,” and like most New York transplants, I always came away disappointed in one way or another. If it had the sauce, it was missing the crust. If it was crispy, it had no flavor. If it had some of those things, it was missing even one ounce of decent service.
I had to ask myself, “Where were the restaurants like the ones I grew up with? A place that is easy, accessible, fast and friendly? Do I really have to pay twenty dollars for a freaking good pizza?” That’s when my father’s pet phrase kept ringing through my head.
And that’s where the Concept for Tomato Pie Pizza Joint began.
...a fresh product of quality, at the center of a pizzeria with great service and a fun and accessible atmosphere… basically, the kind of unique pizza shop we all grew up with.”
I figured there had to be more people in Los Angeles craving the same experience. And that inspired me to bring together the elements that made the restaurants I remembered such special places: a fresh product of quality, at the center of a pizzeria with great service and a fun and accessible atmosphere…basically, the kind of unique pizza shop we all grew up with.
Come into one of our shops. You’ll be welcomed into a place that immediately feels comfortable. You’ll notice the retro touches. You’ll be helped by people who think it’s fun to do a job well. You’ll probably hear a tune you like, or if you don’t, wait a minute, because our mix is as eclectic as the sources of our inspiration. And when your pizza is ready, you’ll hopefully love it as much as we do.
Growing up, my father, Joe P., would take me to the local pizza parlor and grab two cuts and a drink, real cheap and real fast. It was a true staple in our diet, as well as an important part of our everyday culture. Seven out of ten shops had a decent slice and, for some reason, it’s been a hard commodity to find again.
I have made it my life’s passion to bring to Los Angeles all of the elements that I believe combine to make a great New York style pizza joint—great crust, superb ingredients, service that gives a damn, and an accessibility that caters to today’s “need-it-now” lifestyle. I hope you appreciate the effort my hard working staff puts forth to accomplish this seemingly lost art.
I sincerely hope you enjoy your dining experience with us. Thanks for coming. See you tomorrow!
— Garrett Policastro (Founder)