The cheese is just right at Esposito’s Pizza

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I’ve never had pizza in New York, but the pizza at Esposito’s New York and Coal Fired Pizza has to be a close second to famed NYC slices.

Located on University Drive, this place may look a little tacky on the outside, with its rundown brick columns and surrounding packed plaza, but if you can overcome its deceptive entrance, you’re in for a great meal.

This place is nothing like Pizza Hut, Domino’s or other fast-food pizza chains. I went with my brother on a Thursday night, and since he and I live on a tight budget, we hoped that this place wouldn’t disappoint. The first thing we noticed was the wonderful smell of pizza from the coal-fired oven, which instantly made me crave a bite.

I ordered a 16-inch cheese pizza, which had lightly browned cheese and slightly toasted crust. However, it wasn’t too crunchy and it was so steamy that it fogged up my glasses. When I took the first bite, I remembered the way people reminisce about New York pizza and I thought, “How could this not be as good as a New York pizza?” My brother ordered baked ziti and it was awesome. The pizza had just the right amount of tomato sauce and the baked ziti was delightfully cheesy.

Seeing how ugly the outside was, it’d be easy to expect Esposito’s to look run down on the inside. As soon as we entered, I immediately felt underdressed, looking at how sharply dressed the employees were and how “ritzy” the place seemed. There’s no real dress code for this place, but I’d recommend at least a polo shirt and dress pants.

While I was eating, I thought “I just have to bring my girlfriend here on date night” as the environment felt romantic with its elegant Italian decoration and old-style wine bar. It’s very old-fashioned and even has a guy in the kitchen throwing the pizza dough up in the air.

The silverware and the plates in the restaurant were sparkling. Most people take this for granted, but I’ve lost count of how many restaurants I’ve been to where there was evidence of something left over on the plates or silverware. The whole place was very clean and inviting. Even the sociable employees made me feel welcome and attended to my needs immediately, Ten minutes after I ordered, I received my order.

Even though the interior of Esposito’s gives the impression of an expensive restaurant, the prices are very affordable, even for someone like me, a college student who lives on minimum wage. The 16-inch New York-style pizza I had was $14 and my brother’s baked ziti was $12. The baked ziti was well worth the money as it took up half the dinner plate, which also included a caesar salad. Other Italian favorites like fettuccini Alfredo are priced at only $12 and the coal-fired pizza at 16 inches is about $16. I also had a great tasting cappuccino for only $3. Esposito’s also sells espressos and American coffee for $2 and macchiatos for $3.

If you’re looking for a good place to take your significant other, or if you just want to have a good pizza without spending a fortune, then Esposito’s is the place for you. To see the full menu, visit espositospizza.com or simply stop by 2221 South University Drive in Davie.

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