Open daily; M-F 11AM - 11PM, check weekend hours
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Mauceri’s is an “old line” Chambersburg pizza joint now under Latino management (as most are within the new Chambersburg). In our limited sample, the pizza is pretty good… the ingredients taste fine but the crust is disappointing. * It’s one of the better pizzerias within Trenton city limits, but not a place that you can compare to the elite tomato pie restaurants for which this city used to be famous. So, why are we reviewing this joint?
In a word: Pupusas. Mauceri’s boasts a growing Latino menu, and the chef is from El Salvador, the traditional home of these wonderful, stuffed tortillas. Derived from the Pipil (Aztec) words for “stuffed” and “tortillas”, pupusas have taken Central America by storm, similar to how hamburgers are now an international staple. Most of the Guatemalan joints in town make them as well. But Mauceri’s makes them the traditional, El Salvadoran way on a Comal (a stove-top griddle) without any oil. The fillings are tasty, and the traditional salsa roja is homemade and thick with pureed onion. The curtido (the traditional cabbage accompaniment, a cross between sauerkraut and cole slaw) is the best in town, redolent with cilantro and herbs.
We’ve tried some of the other Latino items on the menu, and they’re competently prepared. But if you’re looking principally for Latino food, it’s a fairly limited menu, and only the pupusas stand out as truly exceptional.
Mauceri’s boasts a pleasant-enough dining room separated from the pizza counter. The waitress is competent and friendly, but speaks little English. The manager is quite fluent, and will usually try to take your order if he sees that an Anglo is in the house.
* The crust is made with flour that is too “soft” (i.e. too low in gluten content) to provide a crisp, chewy base that won’t get soggy. Of course, Mauceri’s charges $11 for a large tomato pie, compared to $15+ at one of the premiere tomato pie restaurants. Hard gluten flour is expensive, and it’s not surprising Maurceri’s cuts corners there. But, for me, I’d rather pay more for a better pie, and I’m sure most HT readers feel the same way.