Most people outside of the Boston area have probably not heard of the term "bar pizza." But for those who do live around here--especially on the South Shore, which is to bar pizza what the North Shore is to roast beef and seafood--it is a common occurrence to head out on a weekend night for a bar pie and a beer. Now the place that seems to get the most press for this kind of pizza is the Lynwood Cafe in Randolph, and while this writer tends to agree that the Lynwood may be the reigning king (although the now-closed Alumni Cafe in Quincy was pretty darned good as well back in the day), there is a little-known spot just off Route 3 in Pembroke called Poopsie's that is sometimes named as THE place to get bar pies south of Boston--or anywhere around Boston, for that matter.
While many spots that feature bar pizza tend to be dive bars and tough-looking roadside joints, Poopsie's is a bit different from those; located in a rather generic-looking shopping center on Route 139 near the Marshfield border, the place looks like neither a dive bar nor a juke joint. In fact, Poopsie's doesn't look like much of anything at all, as it is so invisible from the road that unless you are aware of its existence, you probably would never even know that it is there. The interior of the place, which has been in business since 1973, also strays a bit from your typical dark and dank drinking establishments that feature bar pie, as it almost has the feel of a family restaurant, with a spacious carpeted dining room to the right and a distinctly non-threatening bar area to the left. Add to this a good amount of light coming in from the large windows and a spacious parking lot out front, and Poopsie's could indeed be seen as a place to get chicken parm, steaks, and seafood. But no, the name of the game here is bar pizza, along with relatively cheap beer (although the menu here does include other items such as salads, chili, burgers, reubens, and hot dogs).
So what is the bar pizza like at Poopsie's? Well, like nearly any good bar pizza, the crust is very thin and a bit cracker-like (though it is a little more pliable than some others, as the oil and grease really soak into the crust), the sauce is zesty and slightly sweet, the cheese is put on pretty heavily all the way to the edge of the crust (and is quite greasy), and the toppings include such standbys as pepperoni (large diameter but thin) and hamburg. What makes Poopsie's pizza stand apart from some of the others is the fact that the sauce has a nearly perfect mix of herbs and spices mixed in, while the cheese has a nutty and slightly bitter flavor that some of the lesser bar pies tend to be lacking. As for the crust, well, it's a matter of opinion, as some people think the thinner the better as far as bar pizza is concerned. And Poopsie's crust is about the thinnest we have ever seen, but if there is one minor gripe we have about the bar pizza here, it is the crust, as the flavor of it doesn't quite reach the greatness of the yeasty dough from the old Alumni or the slightly chalky but flavorful crust from the Lynwood. Again, this is a matter of opinion, and the crust still ranks up there in our eyes as well above average among other bar pizzas in the Boston area.
The place may have a strange name, and the restaurant itself may not look like the type of spot that has one of the best bar pizzas in Eastern Massachusetts, but Poopsie's is indeed the real deal for bar pie lovers. No matter where you live in the Boston area, a trip to this Pembroke dining spot is a must if you like your pies small and greasy and with a thin crust. And as to whether it is as good as the outstanding Lynwood Cafe? Well, we will just have to leave that to you to decide for yourselves.
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