Kids these days are spoiled rotten, what with their TikTok and Fortnite and inheritance of a doomed economy and planet that’s quickly facing a climate reckoning. Okay, the youth of today have actually got a pretty bum deal, in the grand scheme of things. But if there’s one aspect where anyone growing up in the UK today has got a massive privilege over their millennial counterparts it's in the wide range of high-quality pizzas they’ve got available at their disposal.
When I was growing up, there were only really two types of pizzas available: whatever the hell you’d call those thick, bready monsters they had sweating at the Pizza Hut buffet, and the thin ones you’d get at Pizza Express. Now, you can find just about every unique pizza style going on the high street. From Grandma-style Roman slices to thin and crispy New York-inspired pizzas to deep-dish Chicago-y creations, there’s no limit to the pizza available to a dedicated eater in 2021. You’ve just got to know where to look.
One style that I have noticed gaining some traction recently is Detroit-style pizza. For those of you who don’t know, Detroit-style pizzas are these thick, rectangular, almost focaccia-like pizzas that come heaped in cheese and your typical array of pizza toppings. Oh, and the tomato sauce goes on top of the cheese. Go figure. The shape supposedly comes from the fact that the pizzas were first baked in the industrial blue steel pans used by Detroit auto workers. Those pans, initially designed to mop up any grease and oil or hold small industrial parts, turned out to make pretty great trays for creating crispy-edged pizzas.
The style is said to have been invented at Buddy's Pizza in Detroit around 1946 yet it’s only in the last few years that Detroit pizza has gained a foothold on this side of the pond. Ramona, a pizzeria and bar based out in Manchester's Northern Quarter, was one of the country’s early adopters of Detroit-style pizza. While they might not have been the very first to set foot ashore the America of this metaphor they were, at the very least, on the Mayflower when it arrived. One of the problems that Ramona faced early on was explaining to customers what a Detroit pizza actually was, and convincing them that they actually knew what they were doing,