THE BEST PIZZA IN NYC

CHECK OUT ALL THE BEST SPOTS TO TASTE PIZZA AROUND NEW YORK

Grab a Slice of Heaven With the Best Pizza in NYC

There may be an ongoing battle between New York and other places around America as to who has the best pizza overall, but stand firm in our belief that New York deserves one of the top two spots. Even if you can’t choose between the cities, we can narrow down some of the best pizza in NYC for you that showcases what it is about our pizzas that bring forth international acclaim. 

New York was the first place to sell pizza by the slice, and back then, it was a working man’s food. There’s even a little thing known as the “Pizza Principle” that states the price of an average slice of pizza won’t exceed the subway fair. That’s not a bad thing to keep in mind when you’re on the hunt for the best pizza in NYC, but what about the best places to try out?

We’ve got you covered there! Keep reading to see our top choices when we’re fixing to grab a little slice of heaven.

Best Pizza in NYC #1: Di Fara’s

Enjoy a Round of Chaos Pie! 

  • Must Try: Chaos Pie, Five brothers Pie
  • Neighborhood(s): Williamsburg (original), Midwood
When thinking about the Loving Cup when we consider the best desserts in San Francisco, two qualities stand out for us here that make this different than a lot of other places: hand churned and made to order. That’s right, soft serve has never tasted as fresh as it does when it’s ordered from the Loving Cup. From frozen yogurt to rice pudding, from catering to the ability to visit them in 5 different locations around the San Francisco area, the Loving Cup has something everyone can enjoy.

Simply choose a size, pick a flavor, decide on some add-ins, and watch as the ingredients are all blended together to give you a creation you won’t be able to taste anywhere else. The yogurt is gluten-free, cultured, and all-natural — certainly words we don’t usually think of when we think of sweets, but the Loving Cup knows how to deliver, which is why they claim their spot as one of the best desserts in San Francisco.

best pizza in nyc

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best pizza in nyc

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 Best Pizza in NYC #2: Juliana’s

See What the Fuss is All About

  • Must Try: White Pizza, No. 2 (sliced cherry tomato, Bufala mozzarella, garlic and sea salt)
  • Neighborhood: Dumbo
Pizza legend Pasquale “Patsy” Grimaldi offers us some of the best pizza in NYC at Brooklyn’s own Juliana’s Pizza. The restaurant is named after Patsy’s mother, Juliana, who hailed as the youngest of four who grew up in Melfi, Italy. Back in 2015, Juliana’s also received the TripAdvisor award for best pizza in the country. The brick and mortar of the restaurant stands in the same location as the original Grimaldi’s pizza that made the Brooklyn Bridge famous and sits in a bigger building across the street now that it’s become a chain.

 

Whenever we pay Juliana’s a visit to stretch out our pant lines, we usually gravitate toward the No. 3 on the pizza specials. The perfectly crafted array of mozzarella, sausage, broccoli rabe and garlic reminds us, with each bite, why this is the best pizza in NYC, and exactly why it took the title for the whole country a few years ago. The fact that this restaurant also houses the first coal-fired oven commissioned in New York in over 50 years (at the time of its opening in 2012) makes it all the more impressive, and the coal-fire certainly adds a lot to the taste factor. It might not still be affiliated with its former brother across the street, but it still knows how to pack a line just as long — if not longer — than its predecessor. 

Best Pizza in NYC #3: Prince Street Pizza

Snack on a SoHo Original. 

  • Must Try: Prince Perfection Pie
  • Neighborhood: SoHo
If you’re a fan of square slices and square pies, Prince Street Pizza offers some of the best pizza in NYC by the square. Most people agree that the pepperoni square — although simple in name — is well worth both the hype and the wait. Visitors frequently claim that not only can Prince Street Pizza be considered among the best pizza in NYC, but should also be considered for the entire country, if not the whole world. 

As far as their specialty square pizzas go, they have four different options, which are all named after nearby streets in the SoHo neighborhood where this pizzeria lives. You’ve got the self-titled “Prince Perfection Pie,” the “Mercer Margherita Pie” with a thin crust, the “Broadway Breadcrumb Pie” which is cheesy pizza at its finest, and the “Spicy Spring Pie” if you want to spice it up a little in your slices.

Best Desserts in San Francisco - Hometown Creamery

Photo Courtesy San Francisco Prince Street Pizza

Best Desserts in San Francisco - Ice Cream Bar Soda Fountain

Photo Courtesy Nick Vasilopoulos

Best Pizza in NYC #4:  Lucali’s 

Channel Your Inner Beyoncé!

  • Must Try: Shallot and Sweet Pepper Pizza
  • Neighborhood: Carroll Gardens
Calling all Beyoncé (and Jay-Z, but really Beyoncé) fans! If you’re out in Carroll Gardens and you’re on the hunt for the best pizza in NYC as recommended by the Queen B, you better stop every plan you have for dinner and head right on over to Lucali’s. If you really want to eat like her, make sure you get extra sauce and jalapeños, but really anything you eat here is going to be top-notch.

The owner, Mark Iacono, hadn’t even been to Italy in person to explore his Italian roots when he opened Lucali’s Pizza back in 2006. Despite that, it didn’t take very long for word of his greatness to spread, and Brooklyn native Jay-Z became a regular within the first few years of opening. Iacono’s attention to detail even landed him a NY-Times piece dedicated to every move he makes while laying out the pizza. So, yeah, you may have to show up right at 5, put your name on a list, and wait for them to call you when your table is ready that night, but it’ll be worth it after the first bite of some of the best pizza in NYC. And hey, you might even see Beyoncé.

Best Pizza NYC #5: L&B Spumoni Gardens

Get Your Pizza AND Your Ice Cream On. 

 

  • Must Try: World Famous Sicilian Pie
  • Neighborhood(s): Bensonhurst (Original), Dumbo
All right, Brooklynites, if you’re on the hunt for the best pizza in NYC that’s also a full-blown Italian restaurant (with amazing ice cream,) look no further than L&B Spumoni Gardens. This little restaurant has come quite a long way since its opener, Ludovico Barbati, Sr., peddled his products on a horse and wagon in the early 1900’s. When he gathered some friends in 1939 to help him build the first of now three buildings, he put the horse and wagon to rest and told his daughter to serve the customers while he made the Spumoni. By the 50’s, he had two shops, the Spumoni Gardens brand name, and had become well-known for the thick, Sicilian pies in the pizzeria.

There are a couple of different locations for L&B’s, but we always recommend heading over to the first one over on 86th Street. The Spumoni Gardens still produces some of the best pizza in NYC, especially those looking for one with a Sicilian twist. The restaurant is still family-owned and operated, although one of the most recent owners, Louis Barbati, was shockingly gunned down in 2016 from a failed robbery attempt.

Best Desserts in San Francisco - Dandelion Chocolate

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Best Desserts in San Francisco - Bi-Rite Creamery

Photo Courtesy of Google My Business 

Best Pizza in NYC #6: Grimaldi’s

Get That Coal-Fired Taste

  • Must Try: The Don (Traditional Pizza Topped with Italian Sausage, Meatballs and Pepperoni)
  • Neighborhood: Dumbo
Local’s may be aware of the somewhat public “break up” heard throughout Dumbo about two pizza shops known as Grimaldi’s Pizza and Juliana’s. Yes, their original locations are right across the street from each other. Yes, they are both on this list, and yes, they both certainly hold their own ground in their own way as offering up the best pizza in NYC. It probably helps that they were both originated by the same man, but the Grimaldi’s brand name has turned into something of a franchise, and there’s no use denying the incredible white pizza the casual diner can enjoy here.

The taste and feel of Grimaldi’s might be a little different ever since being bought out by Grimaldi’s Pizzeria in Scottsdale, Arizona, but the flagship coal-fired pizzas still stand as a guest-favorite option. The location may have seen its ups and downs and closures since being taken over by a different business, but fans of the pizza are always happy to enjoy some of the best pizza in NYC anytime their doors are open — which usually has a line waiting to get in.

Best Pizza in NYC #7: Barbacino’s 

Clam Pie to Elevate Your Tastebuds 

  • Must Try: Clam Pie
  • Neighborhood: Crown Heights
The artichoke and smoked pancetta pizza alone from Barbacino’s Pizzeria is enough to be on the best pizza in NYC list, and that’s only one of our favorite options. They offer up Neapolitan style pizza cooked in a wood burning oven and we’ve always loved every bite. The chef and owner, Ron Brown, spent six summers in Italy learning all about the Neapolitan pizza style that originated in Naples. He later purchased Barbocino’s famous wood-burning oven from the same company that taught him and had it imported to where lives now — right in the restaurant.

Just because it serves us some of the best pizza in NYC, however, doesn’t mean that’s all it has to offer. Visitors like us also indulge in some of the specialty crafted cocktails to sip on with our pizza. You’ll probably find us throwing down or two of the neighborhood-named “Brooklyn,” with Bulleit rye, sweet vermouth, and luxardo and angostura bitters. It’s harder to decide which pizza to go for on every visit, because none of the options ever disappoint. The clam pie might even transport you to a different world (especially after a couple of “Brooklyn’s.”)

best pizza in nyc

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Best Desserts in San Francisco - Baked Bear

Photo Courtesy of Google My Business 

Best Pizza in NYC #8: Joe’s Pizza

Hunker Down on a Good, Old-Fashioned Slice.

  • Must Try: Sicilian Square
  • Neighborhood(s): West Village (Original), East Village, Williamsburg, Garment District, Lower Manhattan 
Do you need to learn how to fold a plain slice of pizza? The idea might sound simple, but grab a slice from the ultimate haven that is Joe’s Pizza, and you’ll have a slice of the best pizza in NYC showing you just why New York is known for awesome pizza. This is a busy little shop, so come prepared to wait it out a little, but it’s no wonder why after just one bite.

The competition out there is tough, but ever since 1975, Joe’s Pizza has always remained in the top running for the best pizza in NYC. In fact, not only did New York Magazine name Joe’s Pizza “Best of New York,” GQ Magazine also listed it as one of the “Best 25 Pizzas on Earth.” If we haven’t convinced you yet, you may as well just go get yourself a slice and see for yourself. We’ll wait.

Best Pizza in NYC #9: Lombardi’s

Visit America’s First Pizzeria

  • Must Try: Buddy’s Cake Boss Pizza (prosciutto, mozzarella, arugula, romano cheese, and basil)
  • Neighborhood(s): Little Italy/NoLita (original), Chelsea/West SIde
Want to get a little slice of the best pizza in NYC that also happens to come from America’s first pizzeria? Head right on over to Lombardi’s in Little Italy, then, and get a taste of history with a slice of pizza. First established in 1905, this iconic NoLita landmark restaurant gives us some coal-fired, thin-crust, Neapolitan style pizza like we’ve ever had it before. You might experience an initial wave of intimidation at the line, but we promise it’s worth the wait.

The original owner, Gennaro Lombardi, crafted the pizza based on what he’d learned out in Naples, Italy. He’s credited with developing the New York Style pizza, so it’s really thanks to him we’ve even become known for our pizza selections in the first place. Even if you’re not convinced it’s the best pizza in NYC, nothing beats the opportunity to try out the original either way.

Best Desserts in San Francisco - Craftsman and Wolves

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best pizza in nyc

Photo Courtesy of Google My Business 

Best Pizza in NYC #10: Joe and Pat’s

Get Your Vodka on 

  • Must Try: Vodka Pizza
  • Neighborhood: Castleton Corners
Need a little vodka to help you on your search for the best pizza in NYC? That’s okay, Joe and Patt’s Pizza has you covered! Grab yourself a Vodka pizza with vodka sauce, fresh mozzarella, and basil. Boom, search over!

Okay, but seriously, the pizzas at Joe and Pat’s are crazy. Like little slices of heaven dripped down through accidental seams in the cracks between the earth and sky. They’ve been a staple out in Staten Island since 1960, and have won numerous “best pizza” awards. Just for the sake of it, you can even get your pizza in the shape of a heart here. What’s not to love about that while you chow down on the best pizza in NYC?

We could go on for days about places to find the best pizza in NYC, but even a full guidebook wouldn’t be enough to get through them all. Outside of our top ten choices, we also recommend Paulie Gee’s, Roberta’s, Totonno’s, Angelo’s Coal Oven Pizza, and 99 Cent Fresh Pizza as honorable mentions if you’ve already tried everything on our list and are still on the lookout.

No matter what, New York is still still the best pizza. Oops, we said it, and we’re not taking it back. We do house the first pizzeria in the country, after all, and our “Pizza Principle” certainly helps us stand out from the pack. If you’ve never been anywhere on this list and you think Chicago wins, we challenge you to a visit, if for nothing else than to let us know what you think is the best pizza in NYC.

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