Of the five boroughs that make up New York City, Manhattan might be the one they make movies about and the one tourists flock to. Tourists who search for the authentic New York City experience often overlook Brooklyn, Staten Island, Queens and The Bronx.
The “A Slice of Brooklyn” tour throws this entire concept out the window with their slogan, ‘Manhattan? FUGHETTABOUDIT!’ And that’s exactly what you’ll do, for the next four hours it’s all about the best of Brooklyn.
As described by owner and guide Tony Muia, the pizza tour is designed to enlighten, entertain and feed. But the pizza is really just a tasty topping on a history lesson, a laugh riot and a helluva lot of John Travolta.
The tour starts at Blimpies Sandwich Shop in Union Square, Manhattan. We eagerly pile onto the bus with big appetites and growling stomachs. Our new best friend Tony is a born and bred Brooklynite. Everything about him is authentic, from his accent to his playful banter.
The tour takes us across that other famous East River crossing, the Manhattan Bridge. All the while Tony keeps us laughing with insider jokes and stories. After a tour of the DUMBO’s cobblestoned streets, the bus makes it way to Grimaldi’s Pizzeria under the Brooklyn Bridge for our first taste of its world-famous coal-fired Neapolitan style pizza. Now we know why it was Ol’ Blue Eyes favorite. Some say he had Grimaldi’s pies flown to him in Vegas!
Needless to say, the pizza was magnificent and definitely set the standard high. From that point on, we knew we could never go back to Dominos.
With an hour between both pizza stops, we had a chance to see the real Brooklyn. As we snaked our way through neighborhoods such as Bay Ridge and Bensonhurst, Tony kept us thoroughly entertained with more stories, facts and famous film clips.
Then we were at L&B Spumoni Gardens for our first taste of Sicilian pizza. The pizza was completely different to Grimaldis and every bit as scrumptious. This is a proud 4thgeneration family business, where there’s always a family member to greet you at the door.
With full bellies, it was back on the bus again and off to the famous Coney Island. Being winter, the amusement parks were closed but the frosty weather only made it all the more beautiful – the notorious boardwalk, the 86 year old Cyclone roller coaster and of course, a restless Atlantic.
As we hopped on the bus one last time, no one wanted the tour to end. We’d all fallen in love with Brooklyn as we chorused ‘”Manhattan Fughettaboudit”!
Over 50,000 visitors have been introduced to Brooklyn since 2005 through Tony Muia’s Slice of Brooklyn Bus Tours. It is the only Brooklyn based company showcasing the foods, beauty, history, cultural landmarks and famous movie locations of the most populous borough in New York City through guided bus tours that depart from Manhattan.