DiCarlo’s Pizza Opens in Italian Village
In case you haven’t heard, DiCarlo’s Pizza uses provolone cheese. Period.
The second Central Ohio location of DiCarlo’s and its cheese can now be found in Italian Village, with a takeout and delivery-only joint at 91 E. Fifth Ave.
The family-run business, which has been slinging pies since 1945, is well-known for a particular kind of pizza. Some might refer to it as Ohio Valley or Steubenville style, but, “We like to say it’s DiCarlo’s pizza because every iteration or offshoot of this style pizza usually came from DiCarlo’s kitchen or our pizza,” says David DiCarlo, part of the third generation to be involved in the business. (Curious about those offshoots? There’s a list on their website.)
It’s not just the cheese that makes this pizza unique, but its lack of “meltiness.” Crust and sauce are the only things that take a spin in the oven and toppings, which are cheese (provolone!) and pepperoni only, go on post-bake.
So, why? It starts with the crust. The crust is hand-stretched in large, rectangular steel pans before getting a double bake – a process that DiCarlo says would burn the cheese if everything were baked all at once like a traditional pizza. Since it goes on cold, DiCarlo also explains that provolone is the cheese of choice for its rich, buttery taste.
DiCarlo’s is sold by the square slice in increments of two. (Twenty-four slices is technically a whole pie.) Outside of pizza, there’s only one other thing on the menu – pepperoni rolls which are, indeed, baked if melted cheese is a must-have.
With dough and sauce made fresh in-house every morning, once DiCarlo’s is sold out, that’s it for the day. And DiCarlo says sell outs have been happening frequently since some social media posts outlining the particulars of the pizza have gone Columbus viral in recent weeks.
It’s not Central Ohio’s first introduction to the pizza. DiCarlo’s also operates a location at 4142 Main St. in Hilliard. However, Italian Village, and the Hilliard location, signal a new direction for the family-run business.
Italian Village is the smallest shop yet at 444 square feet and represents the minimalist, streamlined model DiCarlo’s will pursue moving forward. There are two things on the menu, no frills, no extras toppings, one size of pizza box and an efficient space.
“We’re going right back to the old-school roots; simple is best,” DiCarlo says.
With two shops, Central Ohio likely has its fill of DiCarlo’s locations. DiCarlo says while he wants to grow the concept, they don’t want to oversaturate any one market. Instead, he’s looking to take his family’s pizza outside of the state, to markets like Denver and Miami.
They’ve opened and closed a number of franchises in other states, with spots still in Pennsylvania, South Carolina and West Virginia, but will shy away from the franchise model for future growth, keeping things in the family.
DiCarlo’s is open from 4 – 9 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday and 4 – 10 p.m. Thursday to Saturday, with DiCarlo looking to add late night hours (open until 3 a.m.) on Friday and Saturday.
For more information, visit dicarlospizza.com.