Film director Adam Green, who released Frozen earlier this year and just completed Hatchet II, which you can see later this fall, has hooked up with 1492 Pictures, the production firm that produced the Harry Potter films, The Goonies and Gremlins, to bring Killer Pizza to the cinematic screen.
The film, which is based on the 2009 kid lit novel by Greg Taylor about a fourteen-year-old closet Food Network fan who has a hankering for chefdom and gets himself a summer job slinging pizza dough, only to discover that the pie hole joint is a
whorehouse front for a secret monster-hunting organization, is still in the development stages, but while you're waiting for the film to hit theaters, we can feed you the trailer, along with five of our favorite pizza palaces in Denver and Boulder.
Marco's Coal-Fired Pizzeria , 2129 Larimer Street
Owners Mark and Kristy Dym wanted their place to have a sense of fantasy-Italian bonhomie, where two visits make you a regular and three a member of the family. And they succeeded. Their friendly pizzeria has a contemporary feel even though the building is more than a century old, and the service is uniformly great. But what matters most is the pizza, made in huge ovens brought over from Italy. This is about as close to a true Neapolitan pie as you're going to find anywhere outside of Naples, and Marco's has the VPN certification to prove it. Virgilio's, 7986 West Alameda Avenue
From his 1,400-square-foot eponymous pizzeria just west of Belmar, Virgilio Urbano churns out wonderfully satisfying, thin-crusted chewy pies. You can watch him at work in the exposed kitchen, whose brick-lined oven doubles as a stage for more magic, including addictive spinach pinwheels, olive-oil-brushed garlic knots, calzones, strombolis and oven-hot subs. The straight-up, old-fashioned pizzas slippery with a judiciously herby and sweet tomato sauce and topped with housemade mozzarella are simple pleasures that don't rely on flashy gimmicks or clever Californication approaches to hold your attention. You won't stumble upon chicory or lusty pork belly, fingerling potatoes or porcini dust on the list of pizza toppings. Instead, you'll find those classic, impeccably sourced ingredients that pizza purists hold sacred.
Pizzeria Basta, 3601 Arapahoe Avenue, Boulder
Pizzaiolo Kelly Whitaker learned how to make pizza in Italy, then brought that knowledge to Boulder, where he recently opened Pizzeria Basta. Boulder already has some of the best restaurants in the state, Frasca and L'Atelier among them; can an artisan pizza joint share in their stardom? There's no question that Whitaker has every intention of trying. He makes his dough using a fifty-year-old starter kit from Naples; he sources as many ingredients as he can from local suppliers, farmers and vendors; he pickles his own vegetables, crafts his own mozzarella and ricotta, cures his own pancetta and makes his own sausage, all of which are noble endeavors. But Whitaker really displays his skills when he puts everything together: The slightly misshapen crusts, properly salted and scorched in all the right spots, are surfaced with a remarkably fresh tomato sauce and mouthfuls of inspired meats and vegetables.
Buenos Aires Pizzeria, 1319 22nd Street
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The menu at this understated Argentinean pizza joint lists thirty types of pizza, each as unique as a snowflake, and not one bearing a single slice of pepperoni. Hearts of palm? Absolutely. Corn? You bet. The salty Crudo features prosciutto and sun-dried tomatoes; there's sliced oranges, pineapple and shredded coconut on the Tropical. And shredded hard-boiled egg adorns about half of the offerings: Apparently the Argentine people were the first to discover that hard-boiled egg (both whites and yolks) lend a weird, wonderful, almost nutty flavor to a slice.
The Oven, 7167 West Alaska Drive (Belmar) and 6955 South York Street (Streets at SouthGlenn)
Mark Tarbell, owner of the Oven, is one of those great chefs who understands that he's cooking dinner for friends every night. And when you're cooking for friends, you want to take care of them. At the Oven, this translates to handmade pizza dough, organic ingredients and locally sourced stock, artisan sauces, housemade mozzarella that spreads like the soft cheese it actually is, and ricotta smoked over custom-made ovens that Tarbell helped design. All Tarbell's care combines to create a friendly, fabulous artisan pizza joint.