The Fells Point Fun Festival is the first weekend in October. For at least the next four weeks, the posts will be dedicated to a pizza joint (or wherever I made eat a pie or slice) in this historic neighborhood.
I knew for a while that I was going to write about Brick Oven Pizza. This is not going to be pretty.
I had been eating here since moving to the area in 2000. And like many a tourist I either discovered it by walking around the neighborhood after a night of libations, or through word of mouth. It’s been a while but for me I think it was the former. And then the latter after learning more about this amazing part of the city.
And if memory serves me correctly, I loved it the first time I ate it. I loved it all the way up until about 2007 or 2008. And I’m not quite sure what happened. Either the quality of the food got cheaper, the way the pizza was prepared and heated changed, or my tastes went into a whole different trajectory.
Lets be clear. At one point this was my favorite place for pizza. I craved getting pies of all flavors. I loved the cheese, white, pepperoni, and many other toppings. When I lived in Towson, during and after college, my friends and I would make special weekend trips to get a couple of boxes for carry-out. I thought it was quality pizza. And high quality at that. Not anymore.
In the late 2000’s to now I have seen such a sharp decline that it’s alarming. I’ve eaten here day and night and the quality has been lackluster regardless of the hour. I wanted to think that the effort is not quite there after the bars close vs. during the day, but it’s bad all-around.
But yet I kept going back because I wanted to believe that the quality would resurface. And it’s one of the first places I grabbed a slice when living in the area. Then I started to go out of my way to avoid it. What’s even worse now is when I’m in the area, I don’t even think to go unless it’s with friends or for the purpose of this blog.
And speaking of that, I will be reviewing four slices, albeit briefly, which took place over two different visits. One was during the day and one was near closing time. It doesn’t matter which took place when as they were all pretty disappointing.
When I said I will be brief I was serious. The order does not matter but I got a cheese, white, pepperoni, and that funny looking one. That’s a cheese with pesto on top. I had ordered a white slice with said pesto and they gave me that. I wasn’t even in the mood to tell them they messed up, as the point is moot.
There is no soul to this pizza anymore. The crust, the cheese, and the toppings had no flavor. Sometimes I felt like I was eating soap. It was a struggle to finish any of these. They look so much better than they tasted. The dough was cooked funny and I don’t see how a brick oven can make this. It’s a tragedy.
And for what they charge there is no justification. These are not premium slices.
The staff working the front has also left a lot to be desired. I get people have bad days but a lot of these folks seem to phoning it in. And that energy reverberates to everything.
I think the celebrity testimonials are wonderful but I suspect many are from years ago, when the pizza was impressive.
I write all this because I care. I miss the old B.O.P. And I don’t it coming back. In a way it’s heartbreaking but it’s also time to move on. Every now and again if I’m desperate maybe I’ll grab a slice but there are food options elsewhere.
Many folks from the area will disagree and I understand. Some of my friends are loyal to this place. I was but my heart isn’t there anymore. It’s time to move on.
I can only hope the Fells Point pizza will get better from here.