Marco’s Pizzeria (a new favorite) has two locations, one in Asheville at 946 Merrimon Avenue, and one in South Asheville at 1854 Hendersonville Road. The South Asheville location is between Frankie Bones and Earth Fare.
I know it looks like those two to the right are running for their lives, but they’re not. It’s just my camera on a low-light setting.
Marco’s has been family owned since 1933:
Our pizza is a family tradition. In 1933, Marco’s Great Uncle Patsy started the family’s first pizzeria when he expanded the offerings of his ice cream parlor to include the uniquely New York-Italian dish. Patsy’s Pizzeria in Harlem originally used a coal-fired oven to create a crust that is thin and crisp on the outside. Today, the fourth generation of pizza-makers in Marco’s family continues to use Patsy’s recipe and methods to create a dish that is unlike anything else available outside New York.
Marco and Christine have been business partners since 1994. The next generation—Brian, Amy and Dominic—operate the South location and can sometimes be found at the North location as well. Read more Marco’s history.
Loyal reader, Jennifer (you know who you are), and I met over dinner (somewhere else) recently. It went so well, we decided to get our families together at Marco’s.
What a fun evening! Jennifer, her husband and even her teen daughter love the world of food. Her daughter impressed me no end, starting off the evening with an order of Calamari ($9,95). She smiled broadly before popping this little guy in her mouth.
Between us we ordered two specialty pizzas, as listed on the menu, and one more that was half one specialty and half a different specialty.
Robbin’s Pizza (10″ $8.95, 16″ $17.95, 18″ $19.95) comes without tomato sauce, topped with Gorgonzola cheese, mozzarella, roasted potatoes and caramelized onions. It was nicely flavored, but the mildest of the pizzas, even with the Gorgonzola. The general consensus was that it would have been better eaten before the more robustly flavored pizzas so it’s taste wouldn’t have been overshadowed.
The Chicken Ranch (same pricing as above), made with ranch instead of tomato sauce, topped with baked chicken, smoked ham, onions and mozzarella cheese, was packed with flavor. I just had a bite of this one, but will be ordering it on my next trip to Marco’s.
PIC and I split a 16″ 1/2 – 3 Meat Pizza (cheese pizza with meatball, pepperoni and sausage) and 1/2 Hawaiian Pizza (pineapple and ham or pepperoni). Guess which half was mine . . . We were charged a little differently for doing a half and half, but it worked out to be about the same as ordering a 16″ with similar toppings – $18.25. One of us believes pineapple has no place on a pizza. The other says she loves it!
Marco’s does a nice job on their crust. They talk about it on their website:
With an heirloom method for creating the crust, we couldn’t use anything less than the best ingredients. We make our tomato sauce, along with many of our salad dressings and toppings, in house with the freshest ingredients. The oven at Marco’s is gas-fired and watched over by cooks whose specialty is cooking pizzas using this unique method. As the pie is cooked, it’s turned so that each side has an opportunity to face the open flame.
We took some dinner home, leaving room for dessert. All our server had to say was The Sisters McMullen made the Blondie Brownie they were serving with Ultimate Ice Cream’s Frangelico ice cream (only available at Marco’s) ($4.95 – a great price!) and I was all over it! You HAVE GOT TO TRY THIS! This might actually be the best brownie I’ve ever had. I mean it. And give me credit for sharing with PIC.
Calamari girl was all about the Canoli ($3.00). If you’ve been a Carolina Epicurean reader for a while, you might remember the Canoli throwdown my daughter and I did in Boston’s North End: “Boston Bites“. Look at the slideshow in that article to see the canolis. I’d say Marco’s is right up there with our winner.
And this generous slice of Caramel Apple Cake ($4.oo?) from Jodi, owner of Short Street Cakes and former Marco’s employee, was lusciously flavored and moist. Hope they keep this on their menu! Apologies on not taking better notes. I had already lost control over the brownie.
Just inside the door at Marco’s is an 8-10 seat bar that would be nice to cozy up to with a few friends or even for a quick bite on the run. The dining room is unpretentious and friendly. So friendly, a couple women at a near-by table were openly oohing and ahhing over our desserts.
Our server was friendly and did a good job keeping us happy.
1854 Hendersonville Rd
Asheville, NC 28803