Luigi’s wore down its competitors with consistency, talent and size, and has won The 2009 Observer Tournament of Pizza. The little New York-Style pizzeria, on South Tryon Street near Whitehall, defeated upstart Lorenzo’s for the title in a battle of similar-styled pies. Lorenzo’s, which opened last fall near Ardrey Kell and Marvin roads, advanced to the final from the South bracket by narrowly beating North favorite Due Amici on the strength of fine crust and perfect cheese. Due Amici, a thicker-crusted and more generously topped pie, showed strong favor, making it a tough contest. Luigi’s breezed through its West bracket with only one scare – from the contemporary American Pie Town, in the second round. And it had little trouble with Revolution from the East (also a contemporary-style purveyor) in the semifinals; Revolution, which had been strong through early rounds, suffered from oversaucing in the semifinal, the sweetness of that sauce overwhelming everything else. Luigi’s is owned by cousins Lui and Tony Montesano, who recently opened a second location a few miles from the 4-year-old original, on Steelecroft Parkway. The Montesanos managed to be humble in victory. Said Tony, “It has been an honor to have been mentioned with the other great pizzerias in Charlotte … We’ve had a lot (more) people coming into our store now, from Luigi’s takes the pie prize Cornelius and Concord and Kannapolis. It’s great to have the opportunity (and) we want to thank all our loyal customers.” He did note that while the Observer has reported that Lui was born and raised in Italy, we haven’t pointed out Tony’s pizza heritage: born and raised in Brooklyn, “Bensonhurst”. Actually, if you can say 18th Avenue and 86th, that’s even better.” Done. Congratulations to the entire field for a terrific tournament. Where to find the winner Luigi’s is at 8170 S. Tryon St.; 704-504-2015. A second location just opened at 13551 Steelecroft Parkway; 704-587-6010.