Two Bells for Fishtown’s Pizza Brain

Craig LaBan reviews Pizza Brain on on Frankford Avenue in Fishtown. Fresh ingredients and balanced flavors furnish the Guinness World Recorded pizza museum/shop with two bells.

But while there are certainly more exquisite and inventive pizzas in town, Dwyer and partners Ryan Anderson, Mike Carter, and chef Joe Hunter have done a surprisingly respectable job of spinning some worthy variations on the classic crispy American genre. No puffy, personal Neapolitan pies here. This dough, created by sous chef Austin Adams, is touched by the DNA of sourdough starter and delivers personality.

And while the toppings don’t always quite match the zaniness of the pizzas’ names (most culled from Dwyer’s days as a young data-entry Dilbert), they highlight good ingredients and a fine sense of balance.

Two Bells – Very Good

Pizza Brain [Philadelphia Inquirer]
Pizza Brain [Official Site]

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  • Craigiepoo

    Pizza Brain and Will both have 2 bells. Tell me how that make sense?

  • Little Timmy

    Surprise surprise. More armpit hair. Fucking unbelievable.

  • pmci

    Do people seriously still not understand how star ratings work, and that restaurants are reviewed to a large extent against their peers? How does it make sense that those 2 places each get 2 bells? Because single human being Craig LaBan thinks that a casual pizza place is doing what they do really well while a more upscale spot has room to improve. How does this NOT make sense?

  • WILL GRELLO

    PIZZA BRAIN SHOULD HAVE BEEN ATLEAST 3 STARS. THE BEST PIZZA IN THE CITY BY FAR AND AN AWESOME ATMOSPHERE WITH AWESOME PEOPLE. I AM IN THERE ATLEAST 3 TIMES A WEEK AND YOU SEE ALL OF YOUR FRIENDS AND NEIGHBORHOOD FRIENDS AND THEY ALL SAY HI.

  • Alimentarian

    @1, it’s not like Will is Sketchburger.

  • Harry

    I can’t wait for the papa johns review in a couple weeks. I’m predicting a 3 beller. Good stuff

  • Pizza Shame

    this is laban pandering to the new generation of “foodie hipsters”. It used to be record shop employees that would drone endlessly about some rare Uk import with a sense of knowing entitlement. Now, its the twenty-something restaurant yelpsters who know more about rare truffle oil then how to hold a steady job.

  • http://www.philthycanuck.com/ Adam

    If the refs ever attempt to slow down the game, it’ll be an embarrassment to the NFL. The refs need to catch up with the game… that’s all there is to it.

    • PhEaglesPhan

      I agree, this is absurd if we have to wait on 75 yr old refs to do their pre snap set up and are indeed slowing the pace of the game then we need younger refs.

      I would like to know what rule in the refs rule book states that they control the pace of the game.

  • Andy

    The refs absolutely shouldn’t allow the pace of the game to prevent them from making the correct call on the prior play. But for an official to say they dictate the pace of the game and the teams playing do not is absolutely absurd.

  • G_WallyHunter

    good read, that clears up any confusion from before :)

  • Scott J610

    Blandino doesn’t want any of his refs working up a sweat. They might lose too much weight.

  • cliff henny

    Blandino can say this in off-season from his office, but we’ll see when it’s a live game. Ever been around someone who talks really fast, you end up talking faster. it definitely affects you, it’s very natural. Eagles moving faster getting to the line, waiting on refs, refs will naturally move faster. one major factor is it’s not a typical NFL offense, either. incomplete pass that bounces 20-30 yards down field arent part of the offense. kelly doesnt expect refs to rush around as they are spread out downfield to get officials back into position after setting new ball for play. but, to set the ball after a 5 yd run or 7 yd quick screne/slant doesnt take very long, even moving at a normal pace.

    • UKEagle99

      I don’t know how fast you typed that but the last thing I want in HD is to see a ref spread out downfield >_<

  • Dutch

    Kelly, hasn’t found a reason for concern. Everybody has to play by the same rules. The refs can only slow down the game in instances of the ball being exchanged after an incomplete pass or players going out of bounds which blows a play dead.

    In each case the ball has to be changed. So long as the Eagles rushers don’t leave the playing boundaries the same ball is set for the next play. The defense can not bring in substitutes unless they call a timeout or the Offense substitutes. If there isn’t a called time out, injury or one of the circumstances listed here and the refs are purposely delaying the next play by preventing the Eagles to go into their next play then that’s a problem.

    This is one of the reasons Kelly requires smart conscious players in his system. Player should know the rules and how to make them benefit their efforts.

  • knighn

    “We have to make sure teams understand that they don’t control the tempo, our officials do,” said NFL vice president of officiating Dean Blandino. “We’re going through our normal ball mechanics, we aren’t going to rush [unless] it’s in the two minute drill.”

    Good job, Dean. You make all of the NFL officials seem like they’re pompous, fat, and lazy. Perhaps it’s time to bring back the replacement refs. Or perhaps you need to send your fat, lazy refs to training camp with the Eagles so they can get in shape too.

  • JamesDDl

    Make sure you read the WSJ article. A number of the comments lead you to believe that it’s just a couple of officials throwing their weight around. There is a lot more to it and it sounds like the NFL’s official approach to the pace of play could have an impact on what CK would like to do.

    • knighn

      Here’s why I don’t think so: the networks often take their breaks after TDs. A higher-paced offense should lead to more TDs and more commercial breaks. I believe the no-huddle is going to be used more extensively throughout the NFL… (not just the Eagles) and the Networks are going to make bank on all of those extra TDs. If it’s about money, those refs need to shut their fat faces and get running.

      • JamesDDl

        Read the article. The commercial breaks are part of the network/NFL contract and don’t change based on the number of scores. They are also regulated by the FCC. And it’s not about lazy refs – it’s about the NFL and the competition committee dictating the rules on how they want the games to be played and how that impacts the pace of play.

  • EaglePete

    remember this folks, its not up tempo throughout the game. Probably why Kelly is not too concerned. They do strive to get more plays in on a per game basis however, which this effects of course.

    “The Ducks use plenty of their superfast tempo, but they actually have
    three settings: red light (slow, quarterback looks to sideline for
    guidance while the coach can signal in a new play), yellow light (medium
    speed, quarterback calls the play and can make his own audibles at the
    line, including various check-with-me plays), and green light
    (superfast).

    This change of pace is actually how Oregon constantly keeps
    defenses off balance. If they only went one pace the entire game the
    offense would actually be easier to defend. When the defense lines up
    quickly and is set, Kelly takes his time and picks the perfect play.
    When the defense is desperate to substitute or identify Oregon’s
    formation, the Ducks sprint to the line and rip off two, three, or four
    plays in a row — and it rarely takes more than that for them to score.”

  • Engwrite

    I am not sure how to get my head around this issue. Since it was discussed within the competition committee, it may be a reflection on the Patriots, ie., other teams trying to take a perceived Patriot advantage away, like when they legislated against corners making contact after the Pats manhandled the Colts receivers. Or, it may be a reflection on all the ink (or pixels) spent on the Kelly Oregon offense and the fear that the ‘superior’ NFL may have something to learn from colleges. A third possibility is TV. If the pace of the game is such that TV commercial breaks suffer in any way, the league will be very unhappy. TV is by far the biggest source of revenue and so the officials may be made aware of the need to call the TV breaks when TV wants them. Finally, I wonder whether refs will apply the same rules to the Eagles and the Patriots.

  • Max Lightfoot

    Don’t be too zippy, Chip, ’cause I might miss Andy Reid and his wild-eyed, thousand -mile stare as precious seconds expire … well, not really.

    • Dutch

      This scene was to familiar in Philly over Reid’s 14 year tenure. Amazing this situation never got better for a guy with 30 plus years of football under his belt.

  • James Skip Carl

    The NFL is alot different than college being that the QB can listen to his headset, if their quick enough to the line then in essence the coach can call the audibles

  • PsychoPathetic1

    Refs controlling the tempo equals refs controlling the outcome. Maybe the NFL should realize that up tempo means more possession changes in the game which means more commercials, which means more $$$ for the league.

  • GreenBleedin

    I agree. I read that comment and immediately thought here is some dude who needs to understand that the players make the game, not the ref’s. Serious narcissist candidate in that VP.

  • knighn

    OK… so commercial breaks are part of the network/NFL contract and don’t change based on number of scores? And the NFL wants less scoring and fewer highlight plays? It’s all about the NFL Red Zone these days. It’s all about fantasy stats. The refs might want to slow things down but the NFL certainly does not!

    There are certainly rules in place to keep things fair for the defense (substitution rules), but the NFL is not about to slow down. In fact, I’m betting you’re going to hear more fallout from opposing players faking injuries than from the pace of the game. The game is speeding up. This year the NFL should once again set a record for number of plays from scrimmage, yards and points scored. Once again: Refs need to shut their fat faces and get running.

    EDIT: And one more thing… the LAST thing the NFL wants to hear is that they have an inferior product to the NCAA. Once again, refs: Step Up or Step Out.

  • UKEagle99

    Lol… I agree with you though.

  • UKEagle99

    Mate you are killing me :-)

  • Donnieb

    That’s actually a great explanation of how Chip Kelly’s offense should operate. Nicely done.