5. Bob & Timmy’s
There’s no Bob or Timmy at Bob & Timmy’s. Last I heard, they’d sold to Rick and Jose, and I don’t think those two were there on the quiet weekday afternoon when I arrived with a guest. Our companions were a lonely waitress and a guy drinking at the bar. Bob & Timmy’s is a small tavern with beer bric-a-brac, captain’s chairs, reproduction Tiffany lamps, and a TV that remained on even though nobody was watching. Maybe in another era it was a bar for whalers, but there were no whalers around, either. I tried peering into the kitchen at the huge indoor charcoal grill, curious about grilled pizza, but the cook rushed to the door and chased me away. I’m pretty confident he was the cook, because I didn’t see anybody else back there. The menu is vast, but I stuck to simple variations, and every one was expertly prepared. The pies came in standard grilled-pizza format, irregularly round but cut into squares. The crust appeared too skinny to be interesting, but it seemed about the best flatbread I’d ever eaten. The vegetable toppings were remarkably fresh, and it occurred to me that freshness is something we rarely think about when contemplating what pizza we admire. The pie I loved most had three cheeses, the dominant one being feta, which adds tang and saltiness. Now I understand what every Greek must already know: Feta, spinach, and mushrooms are an astonishingly compatible combination.
Our dinner routine for a while has been me cooking six days a week and Bob and Timmy's for a day off.