Bitondo's Pizzeria & Sandwiches

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Bitondo’s holds a special place in my heart. I did my undergrad at UofT, so I was always in and around College and Little Italy. I spent a lot of my time on Clinton, just off of College, because one of my boy’s lived there. That was the spot for the crew. We would end up there so often to do whatever we did. We would sit on the porch chopping it up, listening to music, drinking, talking mad shit, whatever. We did this pretty much our entire undergrad, and I miss those days. Intertwined within all those memories is Bitondo’s. The house was steps from the joint; that same joint that at the time I had no idea was legendary, but has long been etched into the fabric of Toronto. You can imagine how many times we went there. I always wanted the little neighbourhood pizza spot that was talked about as legendary, but where I lived I only had the Pizza Novas and the Dominoes. You live in NYC and you’re hitting up your Vito’s and Pasquale’s, and I finally had my Bitondo’s in a neighbourhood I called home for so long.

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Bitondo’s is no bullshit. None at all. It’s a house that’s converted into a pizza spot, and I bet if they ever sold it would get renovated right away because you’re literally walking into brown when you open the doors. The walls are brown, the ceiling is brown, the floor is brown, and it’s got the most OG menu board that is probably older than me. It’s beautiful.

 

The pizza is one of the reasons I came here and I still go here. It’s so simple. It reminds me of pizza days in elementary, when all I had to think about is if I could swing another slice after I’m done my first one. My go to is the pepperoni, simply because it’s perfect in my eyes. First, the price. $3.50 for happiness? I’ll take one, please. The crust is thin, but not paper thin that it falls like a wasteman when you pick it up, it’s got that NYC fold, but not that NYC drip. Chewy and firm. The sauce is simple, the cheese is cheesy. The pepperoni is a little greasy, a little salty. It’s just simple man, and there’s not one thing that jumps out where I can tell you that’s the reason. It’s the whole package.

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The panzos are the second reason I come here. In my eyes, just as legendary as the pizza. Who knew a fried pillow of dough would be hard to photograph. Not me. Again, this is so fucking simple it hurts. They stuff dough with cheese and sauce, they fry it, and they give it to you. They’re always soft and fluffy no matter when you go in, which is a good sign that they keep having to make new ones. The dough is fried golden but not over fried that it’s greasy. It’s chewy when you pull, so you’re confident that the thing won’t fall apart in your hands. The sauce is simple and the cheese is cheesy. There’s a lot of sauce and a lot of cheese, and you should get the sauce on the side too. You bite into this thing and it's a fountain of cheese and tomato. I wish every fountain was like this.

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In a world full of mega 50 topping pizzas and new extravagant crust options that are shit and never interest me I tend to fall back on what I know. I love pizza for the simple fact that it is exactly that. Simple. Dough, sauce, cheese, meat. That’s all I really want, and Bitondo’s has been giving me that consistency for a long time now. Everytime I crave Bitondo’s I think back to my undergrad days. I think back to the memories that were made over a slice, and the memories that have yet to be made as well. It’s just as Toronto as I am, and I love it so much. Keep your NYC joints, I got my Bitondo’s.