You live on the East Coast, up north. You’re on vacation in Hawaii. What do you do when you’re ‘way out in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and you get an irresistible urge for a New-York-style pizza, a Nathan’s hot dog or a Philly Cheese Steak?
If you’re on Oahu, you can satisfy that urge. You head east from Waikiki to Antonio’s New York Pizzeria, which you’ll find across Waialae Avenue from Kahala Mall.
Antonio’s is run by two “New York” Italian guys from Connecticut, cousins Anthony Romano and Joe Tramontano, who moved to Hawaii a few years ago, opened their modest place in upscale Waialae-Kahala and started making and selling “authentic” East-coast pizzas, sandwiches, pasta and desserts such as New York cheesecake and imported (from Ferrara’s in New York) cannoli.
According to the cousins, real New York Pizza is made from a secret, handed-down-recipe dough (flour, water, yeast, sugar, salt, oil, and who-knows what else, to make a thin-crusted, lightly sauced crust that’s crisp on the bottom with just a bit of flexibility, topped with a selection from pepperoni, Italian sausage, ham, meatballs, spinach, mushrooms, onions, green peppers, tomatoes, jalapeno, sun-dried tomatoes, anchovies, ricotta, Genoa salami, grilled chicken breast, and pineapple.
Visitors from Philadelphia attest to the authenticity of the cheese steaks (which the cousins also make with chicken) and hoagies. There’s a large and growing local clientele, so you East-coasters must be onto something pretty good. Antonio’s – a slice of home in Paradise.