(Through Rose-Coloured Glasses)
The other day, Mayor Bill de Blasio, the new mayor of New York City, created quite a stir in the media and Twitter, when he sat down in a Stanten Island restaurant to eat a pizza, using a fork and knife. He was criticized for not practicing the New York handheld style (i.e. The Hand to Mouth method), by using only his greasy fingers.
The Mayor explained: “In my ancestral homeland, it is more typical to eat with a fork and knife,” the Italian-American defended himself. “I have been in Italy a lot, and I have picked up the habit — for a certain type of pizza. When you have a pizza like this, it had a lot on it, you know, I often start with a knife and fork, but then I cross over to the American approach, and I pick it up when I go farther into the pizza.”
He summed it up: “It’s a very complicated approach, but I like it.”
No explanation necessary Mr. Mayor. As long as the stomach is filled, that’s all that mattered. The end justified the mean.
But for those picky critics, here is what the etiquette doyenne, Miss Manner’s said about it, in 1989.
Dear Miss Manners-What is the proper way to eat a slice of pizza? For an adult to pick up a slice and bite it looks crude. Are you supposed to cut it in small bites and eat it with a fork?
Here is her response:
Gentle Reader-A lot of factors go into determining the correct way to eat a particular food-where it is served, for example, and how it is cooked. Chicken at a picnic or fast-food establishment is eaten differently from chicken at a dinner party or a restaurant, for example, and sauteed chicken is eaten differently from fried chicken.
Now, there are gooey pizzas and pizzas that have been baked senseless. No one should have trouble eating the latter by hand under all but formal circumstances, but you are correct to guess that the age of the eater affects the way gooey pizza is eaten. Grown-ups with strings of cheese all over their faces look a lot worse than young people in the same condition. They should therefore employ forks on which to wind any hanging parts.”
According to WikiHow:
Pizza is undoubtedly one of the world’s best known foods. From country to country, pizza is served and eaten in different ways. There are questions about proper pizza etiquette and which method is more popular than another. It’s up to you on how to eat pizza – above all, it’s great and tasty one way or another!
Cut and eat with a knife and fork. This is probably the most polite way in eating a pizza. It’s also helpful in times where you have a load of toppings and want to taste everything in one bite.
Fold the slice in half. Put the two sides together, so it’ll create a “U” shape at the crust. If you have several loose toppings, especially at the bottom, you may need to either pick them off or hold them in place as you move it towards your mouth.
Remove all toppings and eat it bare. If you want to eat the toppings separately than having it on the dough or picky with what came with the pizza, you may want to do this. Many pizza places have combo varieties, such as Pizza Hut’s “Meat Lover’s” where the whole pizza comes with six different kinds of meat products. What if you weren’t specificallysure of the toppings and didn’t like a particular one?
Eat the slice with no folding. Many people prefer this way since it’s the easiest method to eat a slice. Despite if toppings fall off or the melted cheese stretches, things get devoured nonetheless. Just place the pointed end in your mouth and chomp away.
Eat the crust first. Who said that pizza needs to be eaten from the bottom part? Bite into a piece of crust along with a piece of the actual pizza to blend both items together.
Savor the crust for dipping. Use your favorite dipping sauces, such as buttermilk or ranch dressing. For this, you must use dipping etiquette and go against “double dipping” if sharing with someone else. Break the crust in pieces, dip, and pop into your mouth.
Stuff your own crust. Take all or half of your cheese and toppings off the pizza slice, set them to the side and eat the rest of the slice – except for the crust. Then open your crust (works well with thick varieties), take out extra dough and put in your cheese and toppings. Fold to keep everything in and eat. This is good for people who aren’t fond of plain crust but love pizza.
There, you have it. Enjoy.
NEXT: How to eat Chop Suey ? With a Fork or Chopsticks?