Brookline Native Conan O’Brien Loves Pino’s Pizza of Cleveland Circle
Late-night host Conan O’Brien was the guest of honor at the John F. Kennedy Library in Dorchester Saturday night, at a dinner fundraiser for the library’s New Frontier Network.
O’Brien mingled with members of the NFN—a group for “young leaders and philanthropists committed to advancing President Kennedy’s ideals of civic engagement and public service”—and participated in a panel discussion on presidential wit and humor, alongside Alexis Wilkinson, staff writer for the HBO comedy Veep and the first African-American woman to lead The Harvard Lampoon; Kasie Hunt, political correspondent for MSNBC, and Rick Klein, political director for ABC News.
O’Brien remarked how difficult it is following President Barack Obama at the White House Press Correspondents dinner, especially when the Commander-in-Chief employs some of the best writers in Los Angeles to write his material. Wilkinson recounted the time 2012 Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney stopped by the set of Veep, where someone walked in on the former Massachusetts governor whistling while using the restroom.
Besides sharing an alma mater and a reputation for being remarkably well coiffed, Harvard alums O’Brien and Kennedy share a hometown in Brookline.
“Pino’s Pizza in Cleveland Circle,” O’Brien said. “It’s my favorite pizza.”
Unfortunately, O’Brien’s favorite pie failed to crack Boston magazine’s list of the best pizza in Boston last month. And technically, Pino’s is situated in the Brighton portion of Cleveland Circle. Still, the Boston College haunt remains a favorite among Brookliners.
“Oh man, Pino’s has the best pizza,” Jason Cheek of Sam’s at Louis (formerly Merrill & Co.) told Boston last year. “Just their traditional Sicilian with cheese or pepperoni is one of my favorites in the city. If you go in there, you can order some slices, but if you’re getting something to go, you have to order a whole pie. It’s a huge pizza and totally worth the money.”
The night included remarks from former Democratic lieutenant governor candidate Steve Kerrigan, as well as a performance by a string quartet comprised of Berklee College of Music graduates Anna Stromer, Avery Ballotta, Naseem Alatrash, and Christopher Baum.