For the uninitiated, Joe Beddia is an East Coast pizza demigod. In 2013, Bon Appetit’s Andrew Knowlton wrote a love letter to Beddia, declaring Philadelphia’s Pizzeria Beddia “the best pizza in America.” He wasn’t exaggerating. I never had a chance to visit (it closed in March 2018 after a five-year run), but anecdotes from East Coasters and critics made it crystal clear: This was a bucket-list pie to end all others. Now, nabbing a slice of Beddia’s pizza is more valuable than a mint-condition Babe Ruth Yankees jersey.
Last year, Beddia visited North Mississippi pizza standout Lovely’s Fifty Fifty while on an Oregon wine-making trip. He brought co-owner Sarah Minnick a slice from Philly and told her to heat it up the next morning. “It was great!” remembers Minnick. Two brilliant pizza minds collided, and pretty soon Beddia was floating the idea of a Portland pizza pop-up: one night only, 100 pies max, cash-only, no-reservations.
Beddia will make his fabled dough, fly with his personal stash of Hidden Hills Dairy Old Gold cheese, and Minnick will man the wood-fired oven. The menu is simple: three 12-inch pies, salad, and dessert. Also expect a visit from Beddia’s wine-making buds, Ross & Bee Maloof, who will be on hand, pouring European and local bottles including Maloof Wines, Fossil & Fawn, and Montebruno.
I won’t mince words. This is likely your one and only chance to try Beddia’s pizza. Don’t blow it.
Lovely’s Fifty Fifty, October 29, doors open at 5 p.m.