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50. Dino's


Classification: Traditional

Location: New Hope, Minnesota


I have no recollection of the taste, quality or consistency of this restaurant. It has no online footprint, and no known photographs exist to the general public. It is, for all practical purposes, a ghost pizza. And yet it played a key role in my developing tastes. Oddly, I ordered chicken during our family's first few visit here, sometime in the late '60s. I think the tomato sauce kinda freaked me out, but I feel like I grew out of that phase of tepid resistance, thanks in large part to Dino's.


The photo above is a close facsimile of Midland Shopping Center, circa 1968, where Dino's sat comfortably wedged between the barber shop and the old Coast-to-Coast hardware store. It wasn't as glamorous as shopping a few miles north at the "upscale" Crystal Shopping Center, but Mom allowed us to ride our bikes to Midland since we didn't have to cross as many busy streets. Like all pizza places, Dino's offered in-home delivery, but this was before the invention and perfection of the modern corrugated container that's been a workhorse for decades. No, their pizzas were delivered on a circular cardboard tray inserted into a paper bag that rose and expanded like Jiffy Pop. This is pretty much how I got my start.


Armed with so little information, it's futile to provide an accurate assessment, so instead I decided to drop it in the middle of this list as a symbolic signal to its vitality, seeing that it's essentially the birthplace of my pizza affections. I feel as though a historical marker would not be inappropriate. (7 of 10 stars)

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DaveWarriors
DaveWarriors
2020年6月27日

I don't know Federicis. It's about 45 minutes north of me .


.. towards NYC area. I generally am driving south,

towards Philly and Camden. Maybe I'll take a ride up there one day and check it out!


Pizza is primarily convenience food for us... generally when we don't feel like cooking. So we tend stay very local.


The original Family Style closed a couple years back (though Family Style II is open down near the airport... never been there!). No way to blog from the original anyway. No tables! Strictly takeout and delivery. As was Pizza Villa... now that I think about it, maybe that's why I tend to think of pizza as primarily takeout?

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Webmaster
Webmaster
2020年6月26日

I really want to do a podcast from Family Style. That place looks perfect--a little like a place in St. Paul that will be coming up later in the series.


"In the 1940's, lots of pizza purveyors offered take-out pies. The pizza would sit on a stiff corrugated base, which could slide snugly into a large paper bag. The bag's thin structure would allow steam to escape but only at the price of heat loss. Still, it's not a bad means of conveyance. You can still find this method in use at Federici's in Freehold, NJ, which has been bagging pies since 1946."


Warwick: you know this place?

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DaveWarriors
DaveWarriors
2020年6月26日

Love the mountain of pizza boxes! The other pizza place in my hood was Pizza Villa. They came along a bit later. They served a larger, thin style pizza. We associated that with a "Shore style"... because we usually only got that when we went downashore. Its a typical "NY style" pie. Anyway, that was also a little local shop, and was always piled frighteningly high with pizza boxes! Just like that photo in your link. Except it was a smaller store, so it was a little claustrophobic with all them boxes everywhere! And I always remember... some guy CONSTANTLY folding boxes and re-stacking. I guess they sold a lot of pizza back then. In my searches…

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Charleston
Charleston
2020年6月26日

I too have vague memories of Dino’s , except that it was the family go to, due mainly to convenience. I do remember fairly thin crust, and huge sausage chunks. They were like little meatballs.

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Webmaster
Webmaster
2020年6月26日

Nice link, but I did a search to find the cardboard trays OR the puffy white bag (with an artist's rendering of an Italian Papa) and came up with nothing concrete. Except for this little jewel:

https://slice.seriouseats.com/2011/07/a-brief-history-of-the-pizza-box.html

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