YORK, Maine - Everyone knows there's a lot of great pizza joints in and around Rochester but if there were an off-the-chart, great gourmet pizza place you'd expect it in tony Portsmouth or York, Maine ... and you'd be right.
Enter York 54 handcrafted Pizza and More, where the pizza and the prices are top shelf, and worth every penny.
How about a "Weather Report" with roasted butternut squash, crispy bacon, caramelized onions, Fuji apples and pure maple syrup?
Or maybe a Red Thai Curry Pizza, with homemade coconut red curry sauce, roasted chicken, fresh vegetable salad, toasted peanuts and sesames, with honey-Sriracha glaze?
Or if you're of the vegetarian persuasion how about this pizza peace offering, "The Olive Branch," which comes with Kalamata Olives, roasted garlic, spinach, fresh tomatoes, artichokes and feta cheese?
I know you're getting ready to Google the address, so here it is: 449 U.S. Route 1, Suite 104, York.
Now they still aren't allowing indoor dining in York, but York 54 has a cute little outdoor eating area, where we enjoyed about half of our Hawaiian pizza on Thursday.
A large Hawaiian goes for $21.75, about the same price as our medium-sized gluten-free version, but I have to tell you straightup: This was the best gluten-free crust I've ever tasted, totally crisp, not mealy and awesomely biteworthy when all that's left is the crust!
Upon complimenting the lead pizza chef on the amazing crust, he said it was a recurrent comment among repeat gluten-sensitive customers.
York 54's Hawaiian is a delicious mix of spicy sriracha pork, honey ham, roasted pineapple and jalapenos with a white sauce, which I prefer to red.
They also make some great sandwiches, like an Italian Grilled Cheese ($8.75) with fresh mozzarella and provolone cheese, basil pesto, balsamic tomatoes, red onions and arugula; or A.B.L.T., ($9.75) with crispy bacon, creamy avocado spread, field greens, fresh tomato and chipotle aioli.
If you're up York way, don't miss this gourmet pizza gem.
Travel tip: Take 91 North from Route 236 in South Berwick. When you get to Route 1, take a left toward York Beach and it's about two blocks on you're right.