The Best Pizza Slices in New York City

“What’s the best way to set New Yorkers to bickering? Ask where to find the best slice of pizza in the city. No subject starts a battle faster—not bagels or hot dogs or chopped liver, not even the primacy of the Rangers or the fastest route to J.F.K. Pizza, introduced to New York in 1905 by Gennaro Lombardi, who saw it as a way to use up the day-old bread in his Spring Street grocery store, has long been the affordable, satisfying food of choice for peripatetic New Yorkers of every age, sex, race, and class.”

I wrote that in November of 2002 in the New York Times. The championship of the story said it all : “ The State of the Slice. ”

recently, I started wondering about the state of matter of the cut today. then much has changed in the concluding 17 years. While we ‘ve surely witnessed a revival of the New York slit, you could besides argue that it ‘s been reinvented, all because of five possibly inseparable factors :

  • The explosion of food culture over the last two decades, thanks in a major way to…
  • The rise of food-obsessed websites—yes, like the very one you’re reading now. Which helped inform and connect…
  • Exacting personalities intent on reinventing and elevating humble foods, like burgers, fried chicken, barbecue, ramen, and more. Which eventually included…
  • Pizza-makers, both with serious culinary backgrounds and without, who started taking deep dives into slices using carefully chosen great ingredients (taking a stance that many of the classic slice joints either never did or had abandoned). Part of that stance being…
  • A mastery of fermentation—the process by which yeast and bacteria break down flour, yielding complex flavors and various textures in the crust.

Take Frank Pinello, who may be one of the best examples of this overlap of most, if not all, of the points above. When he opened Best Pizza in 2010, it set the standard for what I and my like-minded pizza obsessives have come to call the “ revival slice shop class ” —that is, an establishment that specializes in selling pizza by the slice, the old-school way, but with particular attention paid to the ingredients used and the techniques employed .

Since then, we ‘ve seen other evangelist spots candid, such as Williamsburg Pizza, which has grown from one wall socket to a mini empire based on pizzaiolo Nino Coniglio ‘s manically obsessive efforts. We ‘ve watched brothers Mike and Pete Bergemann, in partnership with Ivan Orkin ( of Ivan Ramen fame ), loose Corner Slice, serving their own alone take on sicilian pizza made from craftsman flour .

And, taking it to the adjacent flat, and possibly even full lap, we now have Scarr Pimentel, who developed his pizza-making chops at Lombardi ‘s over 10 years, making pies at Scarr ‘s Pizza. Scarr ‘s is a studiously hole-in-the-wall slit joint on Orchard Street, a half nautical mile away from Pimentel ‘s previous gig, where, get this, he makes boodle partially from flour he mills himself. ( The compulsion with flour and dough is typical of the revivalists : Find a lionize new-school pizza godhead these days, and chances are they ‘re besides well versed in bread-making techniques. )

We ‘re in a basically unlike era of slicedom from the time when I wrote that Times patch, or even when I wrote my pizza koran, Pizza : A Slice of Heaven, which was first published in 2005. To amply capture this moment in the evolution of the slice, I enlisted a pair of co-conspirators, Adam Kuban and Scott Wiener, both of whom contribution my love for the slice .

Why You Should Trust Us

Adam was the founder of the germinal pizza web log SliceNY and is a erstwhile oversee editor program of dangerous Eats. not only does he keep his finger on the pizza pulse of this city, he ‘s been making fantastic bar-style pizza at his periodic pop fly, Margot ‘s Pizza .

Scott Wiener is the collapse of Scott ‘s Pizza Tours. No one, and I mean no one, has been to more cut joints or eaten more slices of pizza in the last 10 years. Scott estimates that he has eaten 5,000 slices of pizza in the final five years ( that ‘s 2.75 a day ) .

And I ‘m erectile dysfunction Levine, the founder of serious Eats. I ‘ve been eating and writing about pizza for over 20 years, and published the aforesaid script on pizza ( Pizza : A Slice of Heaven ) in 2005 .

What Is a New York Slice ?

Frank Mastro
Frank Mastro, who invented the gas-fired pizza oven in 1934. [ Photograph : Courtesy the Mastro syndicate ] .
Before we go any far, let ‘s define our terms .

A New York cut ( or pie ) has a thinly crust that ‘s crisp yet flexible—you can fold it without shattering it like a redneck. A bolshevik proto-indo european will typically have an uncooked tomato “ sauce ” ( actually, uncooked crushed tomatoes that have been thinly seasoned with salt ) ; white pies forgo sauce and typically add dollops of ricotta. Depending on the pizzeria, the sauce may be seasoned with herb ( and sometimes boodle ), but the winder is that it ‘s uncooked anterior to going in the oven. ( The regular New York pie is not to be confused with the sicilian or “ grandma ” proto-indo european, both of which have thick crusts. )

That oven will be a deck oven cranked to around 550°F ( 288°C ), most frequently gas-fueled in New York, but electric models are making inroads. ( To understand why a deck oven was indeed important for the development of New York pizza, check out our history of the New York piece. )

The standard cheese is what ‘s known in the diligence as low-moisture mozzarella ( sometimes referred to as LMM ), and, ideally, there should n’t be besides much of it. The amount of cheese used should be in counterweight with the sauce and crust. Ed prefers “ discrete areas of sauce and tall mallow. ”

As for human body, it ‘s constantly sliced into a triangulum. Scott adds, “ It ‘s served on a newspaper plate, but the slice is bigger than the plate. ” ( sicilian and grandma slices are served in squares. )

So that ‘s basically a New York slice. A dependable New York piece is something more .

A adept slice will have a reduce, crisp crust, flavorful sauce that ‘s well-balanced, and good-quality cheese that ‘s creamy and not rubbery. The crust should have good coloration—a golden-brown to brown imbue tells us the boodle was probable fermented properly, which means good relish .

agitation, where pizza dough is concerned, is the chemical breakdown of flour by yeast, which yields sugars and alcohol. The sugars that the yeast helps release end up browning the crust. Too short-change a agitation yields excessively little sugar for browning ( and not adequate alcohol and by-products for flavor ). You can over-ferment, but that ‘s an emergence you ‘ll probably never encounter at most cut pizzeria, where the more common foul seems to be making and using the boodle excessively quickly .

A properly fermented boodle will besides have a courteous crumb, or good hole structure, which is produced by a well-developed network of gluten. This is easiest to see in a sicilian slice or in the end crust of a regular piece, where the crust is obviously at its blockheaded .

hole social organization itself is largely a function of dough hydration, which is plainly the come of body of water in a pizza ( or bread ) dough relative to its flour content. generally, the more hydrated a dough, the more loose and “ airy ” the crumb is, as a wetting agent boodle allows longer gluten strands to form .

last, let ‘s talk about reheats. You ‘re going to encounter this phenomenon at most slice pizzeria, because they ‘ll precook a number of “ slice pies ” for flying service. If a slice pie has been sitting long enough to cool, they ‘ll throw it back in the oven for a morsel. Some pizzeria even under-bake their pies slightly, so the final examination cut does n’t get hammered on reheat .

One topple that veteran slice-eaters will already know—you can specify your reheat temp, from “ not excessively hot ” or “ warm ” to “ make it hot. ” Some exceptionally service-forward pizzeria will even ask, “ Hot or warm ? ” The more you know .

How We Made This list

Our original goal was to come up with a dominate number of all the New York slices you have to eat before you die. But after eating our way through all five boroughs, I made an administrator decision and changed path. Why ? Because we did n’t want to publish yet another pizza bucket tilt. The internet is full of them, and you deserve more from us .

New York ‘s slice culture seems to be making an evolutionary leap—led by the aforesaid revivalists—and we wanted to give this consequence some context. So I decided to split up our number into three parts to do just that :

  • The Revivalists: The slice shops described above, led by the ingredient- and technique-obsessed new wave of pizza-makers.
  • The Classics: We’ve chosen to define “classics” as continuously operating pizzerias that date back to between the 1950s and the 1970s—old-school spots that played a not-insignificant part in the rise of the New York slice joint, and that we consider the best in class of the First Golden Age of the Slice.
  • The Neighborhood Favorites: These spots may fly below the radar in a citywide sense, but locals will be quick to send you there—or not, if they want to keep a good thing to themselves. They’re places that serve as community gathering spots or local touchstones.

Before we go any further, though, some caveats .

  • We researched this article over the course of six months. Each of us did some individual slice-snarfing throughout the boroughs, and then, for two incredible Saturdays, one in Brooklyn and one in Queens, we met up and hit 10-plus places each day.
  • The lists here are largely in alphabetical order instead of ranked, with one exception (Louie’s, in the “Neighborhood Favorites” portion of the list). Why? Because none of us really believe in ranking pizzerias. When you live and breathe and think about pizza constantly, there are just too many variations among slices and too many gray areas. And, ultimately, this body of slices represents the pizza you need to eat to comprehend the New York slice experience.
  • We went back and forth on whether we should include toppings—and which styles we would consider. In the end, we decided on plain slices only, but we did allow ourselves to consider any style commonly served in NYC slice joints—regular* (i.e., round, cheese-and-tomato-sauce-only pizza); Sicilian (a thick, rectangular, raised-dough pan pizza); and grandma (like Sicilian, but with dough that’s not left to rise). For regular slices, we mostly limited consideration to those made only with what’s known in the industry as low-moisture mozzarella—as in, not fresh mozzarella, but the stuff most folks probably know as plain ol’ mozzarella from the grocery store. LMM, whether it’s whole-milk, part-skim, or a blend of the two, is the standard mozzarella on regular New York slices. For square slices, we were a little looser in what cheese we’d consider, as you’ll see. Squares have always been more of a gray area.
  • Many of the entries in the list are a synthesis of notes by, and recorded conversations between, Ed Levine, Scott Wiener, and Adam Kuban—written up by Adam. Where they’re the work of primarily one of us, the author’s name will be noted at the end. Make sense? Yes? Good.

* once known as “ Neapolitan, ” until the great traditional-Neapolitan revival of the 2000s .

The Revivalists

We ‘re leading with the revival places, the places to try out if you want to discover where cut polish is in 2019. Start your piece travel here if you ‘re already conversant with the classics .

Best pizza

Best Pizza
photograph : J. Kenji López-Alt .
When it comes to the heedful reinvention of the classical New York piece here in the city, Frank Pinello may be patient Zero. In retrospect, it seems inevitable. He was raised in Bensonhurst, trained at the CIA, and opened a piece patronize in Williamsburg at the stature of Brooklyn ‘s mid-aughts renaissance .

Those factors seem to have shaped the pizza he makes at Best, which is cooked in a massive brick bakery oven from the early twentieth century—a frame-up that would have been familiar to the men who started the New York coal-oven giants Totonno ‘s, John ‘s, and Patsy ‘s ( though Best uses wood as fuel ) .

At the same time, Pinello ‘s Culinary Institute chops reveal themselves in the attention he pays to ingredients—making, then shredding, fresh mozzarella for the cheese ; pickling assorted vegetables for the sesame seed–crusted white “ pickled vegetable ” slice ; respecting the ingredients adequate to let them stand on their own, as with the nice bright sauce on the plain slice, which is made simply from good-quality crushed tomatoes .

The crust on the regular slices is thin yet bendable, with a gratifyingly crisp-springy texture and great hole structure. The grandma slice has a luminosity and crisp crust and a punchy sauce spiked with garlic and finely chop anchovies. You plainly can not order the incorrectly slit here—and that ‘s before we even mention the fantastic sandwiches, which we wo n’t, because this list is all about pizza .

Best Pizza, 33 Havemeyer St, Brooklyn, NY 11211, 718-599-2210

Corner Slice

Corner Slice
photograph : Clay Williams .
As Ed put it, “ Corner Slice may be the one best slit of pizza in New York at the moment. Holy s***, is this pizza good, and unlike any other slice about. They ‘re elevating the New York pizza slice in a way that no one else has in a long time. ” Ed ‘s called co-owner Mike Bergemann “ the brainsick scientist of pizza ” for the direction he ‘s experimented with respective tall mallow blends and craftsman flours in crafting the square pies that lend the stand in the Gotham West food hall its mention .

The Corner Slice crust is made from a blend of durum and spell flours from Central Milling, a Utah-based mill whose premium flours are considered among the best by many bakers and pizza-makers. Mike and his brother, Pete, hire long fermentations ( which enhance flavor ) of their boodle, which is perceptibly wet ( making the finish merchandise light and aired ). The crust ‘s flavor is excellent, and the crispness is on point, verging always thus slenderly into crunchy district. It ‘s bubbly and light, yet hardy .

The tomato-topped cut, finished with a short sicilian oregano, is a great way to get a taste for what the brothers are doing here, but pair it with another slice of whatever else calls to you. They ‘re all good .

Corner Slice, 600 11th Avenue, New York, NY 10036, 212-956-9339


photograph : Vicky Wasik .
When L’Industrie opened in 2015 under its original french owner, the bantam Williamsburg shop was making fairly pedestrian pies that garnered little attention. But when current owner Massimo Laveglia took over in early 2017, he changed everything but the identify, overhauling the pizza while steadily building a reputation for leading pies and slices. The Florence native made the best slice of the day on our Brooklyn pizza crawl, and it ‘s been systematically good on subsequent visits—superb crust, char, publicize, texture .

” It ‘s the re-Italianization of pizza, and not in a way that says one means is right and one way is wrong, ” says Scott. “ It ‘s not an italian machismo matter ; it ‘s more like, this italian guy making New York–style pizza, but in a way he would do naturally, so his ricotta dabs are more floral-looking—it ‘s barely a truly cool, effective pie, in a bantam, 300-square-foot distance. ” Do n’t miss the burrata slice, which is blowing up Instagram .

L’Industrie, 254 South 2nd Street, Brooklyn, NY 11211, 718-599-0002

Mama ‘s excessively

Mama's Too
photograph : Adam Kuban .
Mama ‘s Too opened on Broadway and West 105th Street in late 2017, having spun off of longtime Upper West Side pizzeria Mama ‘s, just around the corner. Too frequently, the fib of decades-old mom-and-pop restaurants ends with the youngest generation “ moving up ” in the world and out of the business. But there ‘s a big counter-narrative to that, and it ‘s one where fresh blood pulls the clientele into the salute while honoring the past. We ‘ve seen it here in NYC with Wilson Tang at Nom Wah Tea Parlor, Niki Russ Federman at Russ & Daughters, and Jason Wang of Xi’an Famous Foods .

For Mama ‘s Too, owner/operator Frank Tuttolomondo built on foundations established at Mama ‘s, where the pizza is standard slice-joint fare. “ I knew I could n’t change the pizza there, or regulars would be upset, ” Frank said. “ so I opened this put. ”

When it ‘s available and fresh from the oven, the pizza at Mama ‘s Too is fantastic. ( The minor shop has trouble keeping up with demand, and the slices can suffer on reheat. ) The squares are brilliant, with a satisfying crisp-chewy quality and a nice open rotter that placid stands up to the hearty toppings. Tuttolomondo says he ‘s inspired by noted Roman pizza-maker Gabriele Bonci—but that he ‘s trying to bridge the gap between Roman-style pizza alabama taglio ( that is, pizza “ by the stinger ” ) and New York squares. Gap bridged .

Tuttolomondo does the hale post-oven cheese-grating-and-tons-of-basil thing made celebrated by Di Fara ‘s Dom De Marco. The crust is made from a 70 % hydrated dough, leading to a very open, airy crumb and a luminosity, crisp bite. As a general rule, most pizza is best eat straight out of the oven, but we powerfully recommend eating a regular slice from Mama ‘s Too as fresh from the oven as possible ; it loses some of its ethereal qualities when you let it sit .

Mama ‘s Too, 2750 Broadway, New York, NY 10025, 212-510-7256

My Pie Pizzeria Romana

My Pie Pizzeria Romana
photograph : Clay Williams .
Like Mama ‘s Too, My Pie Pizzeria Romana takes inspiration from revered pizza-maker Gabriele Bonci, who is behind Pizzarium in Rome. When My Pie first gear opened in its original spot in 2013, astute pizzaheads would have noticed a Bonci cookbook on proud display, alongside a wood pizza peel bearing the check of Bonci. For the fooling eater of pizza, we ‘ll stress that Bonci is an outsize design in the world of pizza, and when a spot can claim a connection, pizza nerds sit up and listen .

It turns out that the two brothers who opened My Pie, Michael and John Ozger, learned from Bonci himself, and now turn out medium-thick, wrinkle, and easy squares topped with good-quality organic ingredients in an unsuspecting separate of Midtown. The pizza are served aluminum taglio out of bombastic trays displayed behind glass, and they bear an abundance of toppings .

My Pie ‘s bready slices would be a antic find anywhere, but in its original placement on Lexington and 57th, they ‘re a boom. They ‘ve since added a second location on Amsterdam and 72nd on the Upper West Side, which besides needed something like this .

My Pie Pizzeria Romana, 690 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10022, 212-317-1850

Scarr ‘s

photograph : Clay Williams .
not many pizzerias in New York—or the world, for that matter—can claim they ‘re using impertinently milled flour in their dough. And Scarr ‘s is the entirely one in New York deal such pizza by the slit. ( Bruno, which opened in the East Village slightly before Scarr ‘s, offers hale pies made with house-milled flour. )

Owner/operator Scarr Pimentel, who has worked in pizzeria all over the city—Joe ‘s, Lombardi ‘s, Artichoke Basille’s—blends his own milled flour with organic inheritance flour from an upstate farm. Pimentel says impertinently milled flour retains more of the pale yellow ‘s nutrients and can help with digestibility, but what wins us over is the slightly nutty spirit and crisp-chewy texture that the flour blend produces in the crust .

The denounce itself is a fun re-creation of a 1970s pizza shop—one that fair happens to sell some of the most well-considered pizza in the city .

Scarr ‘s, 22 Orchard Street, New York, NY 10002, 212-334-3481

Sofia Pizza Shoppe

Sofia Pizza Shoppe
photograph : Adam Kuban .
Tommy DeGrezia and Matthew Porter opened Sofia in 2016 in an area of Manhattan that painfully lacked a fine slice. Tom ‘s last mention may look familiar if you ‘ve already perused the “ Classics ” section : He ‘s the grandson of Vincent DeGrezia, the “ V ” in Bensonhurst old-school joint J & V Pizza .

The regular slices at Sofia are what you should focus on—they ‘re thinner than common, always coherent, and have fair the veracious libra of sauce and good-quality tall mallow. As mentioned, one of our flat coat rules was that we ‘d judge alone on plain slices, and these plain slices pass. But do n’t skip their signature spinach-dip slice, which sounds like a gut-busting catch but actually works, leaving you feeling satisfied but not regretful in the least .

Sofia Pizza Shoppe, 989 First Avenue, New York, NY 10022, 212-888-8816

Williamsburg Pizza

Williamsburg Pizza
photograph : J. Kenji López-Alt .
Nino Coniglio is an idiosyncratic, itinerant pizza guy who went from pizza competitions to a superb, now-defunct shop in abstruse Brooklyn and is now a partner and run pizza-maker at Williamsburg Pizza. He ‘s besides a pizza adviser, developing pizza programs at pizzeria, restaurants, and bars. Judging by his ferment at Williamsburg Pizza, those places are in good hands. We had a very dependable grandma slice here, and the regular slit has an old-school NYC crust with a crisp facing and tender insides, and batch of color and bubbles to boot .

Williamsburg Pizza, 265 Union Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211, 718-855-8729

The Classics

The old-school places that laid the foundations for the revivalists to build upon. These are the slices you need to eat for some basic level-setting and for overall piece cultural literacy .

Di Fara

Di Fara
photograph : Adam Kuban .
What more is there to say about Di Fara that has n’t been covered in this epic 2009 position, “ All You Need to Know About Di Fara, 2009 ” ? Well, turns out that a lot has changed in about 10 years—even at a place most people might have thought was frozen in time .

owner and pizza patriarch Dom De Marco inactive takes the pies out of the oven with his denude hands, still takes forever, but his daughter Maggie has semi-successfully made order out of chaos when it comes to ordering, writing down each order manually in a notebook with her own unique shorthand. Dom has a pizza-making assistant now, which helps some. They ‘re not using fresh mozzarella on the regular pie anymore, and the handful of newly grated Grana Padano were replaced by pre-grated Romano after Dom ‘s old counter-mounted circular grater broke and he was ineffective to find a replacement .

The Sicilian, which a fortune of people prefer to the regular piece, was dense and tough. We much preferred the regular, which, even with the changes, somehow still tasted like Di Fara. He may have lost a step, but thus does every great athlete before they retire. Scott calls it “ the pilgrimage pizzeria of NYC. ”

Di Fara Pizza, 1424 Avenue J, Brooklyn, NY 11230, 718-258-1367

Joe & Pat ‘s

Joe & Pat's
photograph : Clay Williams.

A photograph of a cut from Staten Island legend Joe & Pat ‘s is immediately recognizable : a super-thin, flat crust all the means to the edge, with discrete cubes of low-moisture mozzarella that melt into distinct blob ( quite than the full coverage that comes from using shred cheese ), against a background of very simple tomato sauce .

Joe and Pat ‘s Pizzeria, 1758 Victory Blvd, Staten Island, NY 10314, 718-981-0887

Joe ‘s Pizza

photograph : Adam Kuban .
This is the New York–iest of New York slices. It defines classic NY slice pizza—crisp, thin crust, crushed displace tomatoes as sauce, low-moisture mozzarella for cheese. Do n’t bother with the fresh-mozz slices—they ‘re constantly bland. Joe ‘s is then consistent in all its locations ( a bunch of NYC shops and one in Shanghai ) that I have dreams of it replacing every mediocre Famiglia in airports and malls and train stations everywhere .

Joe ‘s Pizza, 7 Carmine St., New York, NY 10014, 212-366-1182

L & B Spumoni Gardens

L&B Spumoni Gardens
photograph : Adam Kuban .
When person talks about an “ L & B–style slice, ” they ‘re often talking about the way this legendary Gravesend pizzeria assembles its hearty pizza : boodle, slices of low-moisture mozzarella, then the sauce. This is followed by a dust of scrape Romano tall mallow all over, particularly along the edges, where it bakes into the crust, creating a kind of accidental Parmesan stick—you know, like those breadsticks that have barely a dust of baked-on cheese .

But there ‘s more to it than that. The crust is like no other. The bed is plenty wrinkle, but the interior is tender and soft—it ‘s airy, even though it has a tight-to-medium crumb .

Where the cheese and crust touch, the two become one. Some people find this off-putting because, when you bite in, it feels like the boodle is undercooked. But, as Scott pointed out to us, this is a faithlessly “ gum line ” —a line in the crust where the boodle is still raw, which can happen in improperly cooked pizza. What ‘s happening with L & B ‘s is that your teeth push the dissolve cheese into the boodle, creating the impression of a gum production line .

The L & B Sicilian slice in truth is its own thing. And let ‘s be clear that we ‘re talking alone about the Sicilian here, because that is 100 % the pizza they ‘re known for .

L & B Spumoni Gardens, 2725 86th St, Brooklyn, NY 11223, 718-372-8400

Louie and Ernie ‘s

Louie & Ernie's
photograph : Adam Kuban .
Let ‘s use the brilliant, just-thin-enough slice at Louie and Ernie ‘s to talk about topping distribution, because something they do there illustrates this concept absolutely : They put a little crimp of black capsicum in the center of the pie, so your first bite has that zing. This is called center-loading. Another technique they ‘re ace at here is evenly distributing the toppings so each pungency is uniform .

These are the small differences you might not notice, but they ‘re built-in to making your favorite slit your darling slice. There ‘s besides a spot of cornmeal on the bottom here, which offers some supernumerary texture. It ‘s all topped meagerly with whole-milk mozzarella and grated cheese, and when you add up all the details, it makes for a bantam slice of eden in Throgs Neck in the Bronx .

Louie & Ernie ‘s Pizza, 1300 Crosby Avenue, Bronx, NY 10461, 718-829-6230

New Park Pizza

New Park Pizza
photograph : Adam Kuban .
We struggled with including New Park because it can be discrepant, and because you have to ask for it well-done if it ‘s to approach its potential greatness. But when it ‘s on, it ‘s so on. The regular slice is the thing to get, cooked in an erstwhile brick-lined oven that ‘s got, like, a flamethrower inside. Scott thinks it used to be a coal oven that was good repurposed. They do this thing where they throw salt on the floor of the oven every hour or two, and when you get a just-salted slice ? Perfect. It ‘s the little quirks that make the deviation here .

New Park Pizzeria, 156-71 Crossbay Blvd, Howard Beach, NY 11414, 718-641-3082

NY Pizza Suprema

NY Pizza Suprema
photograph : Adam Kuban .
After leaving the class commercial enterprise to work in law, Joe Riggio finally came back and took over Suprema from his father, Sal. Located across from Penn Station and Madison Square Garden, the place is always busy, so you ‘re all but guaranteed a bracing slice that has n’t been sitting. It ‘s got a fresh sauce, but it ‘s one comforting slice however. If you ‘re going to the Garden, this should be your pre- or post-game slice. If you get to Penn Station early, head here immediately. The regular slice is emblematic, but the inverted Sicilian is on another level altogether. Super-fast and effective service, and you can about constantly find a seat .

New York Pizza Suprema, 413 8th Ave, New York, NY 10001, 212-594-8939

Patsy ‘s East Harlem

photograph : Clay Williams .
Patsy ‘s is a prize. It ‘s one of only two coal-oven pizzerias selling by the slice in New York—and a apparent slit goes for entirely $ 1.75. An exemplar of minimalist paragon, the Patsy ‘s slice has been signally coherent ever since I ‘ve been in New York. [ Editor ‘s note : That is, since 1973. ] Sure, it ‘s smaller than most slices, but it ‘s cheaper than any other thoroughly cut in New York. In the din room, they offer a choice of fresh or low-moisture mozzarella—the merely coal-oven pizzeria to do so—but at the slit counter adjacent doorway, LMM is the default .

Patsy ‘s Pizzeria, 2287 1st Ave, New York, NY 10035, 212-534-9783

Rizzo ‘s Fine Pizza

Rizzo's Fine Pizza
photograph : Adam Kuban .
Rizzo ‘s serves a unique slice, which it describes as a “ thin-crust sicilian. ” It ‘s a orthogonal slice sparsely topped with sauce and tall mallow. As with Joe & Pat ‘s, its signature look is the solid discrete-areas-of-sauce-and-cheese thing. But Rizzo ‘s takes it to a unharmed fresh level—you can about imagine them meticulously laying on one two- by three-inch rectangle of slice tall mallow per slice. The crust is biscuit-y and dense, but it works. cipher else is making a slice like this, unless you head to Lazzara ‘s in the Garment District, but that ‘s whole-pie-only .

Rizzo ‘s Pizza, 30-13 Steinway St, Astoria, NY 11103, 718-721-9862

The Neighborhood Favorites

Louie ‘s

photograph : Daniel Gritzer .
The superb grandma slice at Louie’s—light, not besides midst, dainty and aired and crisp—is an example of why it pays not to be besides rigorous about categorizing and terminology .

For the longest clock time, I mistakenly believed that a grandma was just a “ slender sicilian, ” one that typically had a lot of garlic ( but sometimes not ) and that often had the sauce painted on in diagonal stripes ( but not always ). But Scott set me straight a while ago, explaining that a grandma ‘s dough is pressed out into its orthogonal pan, topped, and then baked immediately, while a sicilian dough is left to rise, or “ proof, ” in the pan before it ‘s topped and baked. ( At L & B, they actually top it with cheese and sauce and then let it proof. )

Per Scott ‘s definition, the star of the picture at Louie ‘s Pizzeria is technically a sicilian, since it proofs in the pan. furthermore, it ‘s an inverted sicilian, because the cheese ( fresh mozzarella, in this sheath ) goes on first, covered by an ample come of jam plum tomatoes seasoned with lots of garlic, basil, and Pecorino Romano .

even if you do n’t remember these details, precisely remember to get the grandma at Louie ‘s. The regular slit is perfectly fine ; better than average, very, and I ‘d be happy to club it if it were my local anesthetic and we needed round pies for some cause. But it ‘s barely not in the same universe as the grandma there .

What ‘s more, Louie ‘s embodies the very impression of the Beloved Neighborhood Fave, which is why it ‘s at the top of this category and not in alphabetic order, like we ‘ve done elsewhere .

tied though we believe we ‘re in the center of a pizza renaissance, and even though a draw of pie-makers may be turning out the most technically well-crafted pizza we ‘ve seen in a generation, one thing that seems to be in short provide is a mannequin of genuine cordial reception, something that is n’t part of a self-conscious “ strategy ” designed to wow you. You might not notice the deviation until you ultimately get your butt to a stead like Louie ‘s .

From the outside, it ‘s an retiring invest, which, truth be told, is contribution of the reason I initially had n’t bothered to check it out. It was neither wittingly hip-looking like Scarr ‘s, nor was it charmingly old-school like J & V. Step inside, though, and you ‘re greeted immediately and sky-high by Louie. If he does n’t know you, he introduces himself ( though he declined to disclose his last name for this fib ). The people bicycle in and out all seem to be regulars—if they ‘re not, you would n’t know it from the direction Louie chitchats with them .

The customers are a divers lot—this is Queens, after all, on the surround of Jackson Heights and Elmhurst. But more than good the racial diverseness you ‘d expect, you ‘ve got people from apparently all walks of life. There are the cops—it is very cop-heavy—picking up dinner for themselves and colleagues. There ‘s staff from Elmhurst Hospital across the street. There ‘s a bougie-looking dad and son, plus a large multigenerational kin there for the non-pizza food ( which I understand is besides quite good ) .

Over the course of three consecutive evenings there, I saw several of the same faces, all of them bantering with Louie and frequently with one another. Louie ‘s is a residential district hub. It ‘s more than merely a place you go to collect a photograph for your Instagram feed—though, true, those grandma slices translate to mega likes .

Are non-Queensers going to rush out here from other boroughs ? probably not. american samoa fantastic as the grandma is, the position is a schlepper if you do n’t live in the area, and you can credibly find a slice fair as meet, in one way or another, closer to home. But if you live nearby, you know the qualities that bring you to a set like Louie’s—or to Delmar in Brooklyn, or Nunzio ‘s on Staten Island, or Sal & Carmine on the Upper West Side—and you advocate obstreperously for your spot .

That is what we mean by Beloved Neighborhood Faves. hera are some more—in merciful brevity .

Louie ‘s, 81-34 Baxter Ave, Elmhurst, NY 11373, 718-440-9346

Ciccio ‘s Pizza

photograph : Adam Kuban .
Living in the trace of L & B is Ciccio ‘s ( just a 10-minute walk away—make it a twofer visit ! ). We learned about it at Slice back in the day from Gravesend local anesthetic David Sheridan, who went on to open Wheated in Ditmas Park. Ciccio ‘s is known for its sesame seed crust, one of the few shops in New York where this is SOP. It ‘s got a dense edge, more cheese than many a New York slit, and nice color on the bottom. The crust is like getting a bonus red-sauce sesame pin .

Ciccio ‘s Pizza, 207 Avenue U, Brooklyn, NY 11223, 718-372-9695

Dani ‘s House of Pizza

Dani's House of Pizza
photograph : Adam Kuban .
Dani ‘s is means the heck out in Kew Gardens, Queens, a true neighborhood spot if there ever was one, so you ‘d think it would be a casual, quick-grab kind of place. Nope. The few seats at the counter are never not filled, and there ‘s a line out the doorway at lunchtime, at dinnertime, at 3:30 post meridiem on a weekday, at midnight on a showery Friday when the streets are otherwise empty, and at 10 post meridiem on the coldest night of the winter in 2015, when I first visited after looking at an apartment nearby .

The crust is ace thin, crisp, and ignite, with a generous helping of sauce, though be forewarned : Their semiofficial hashtag is # sweetsauce. I ‘m normally not into angelic sauces, but I make an exception for a fresh, blistering piece at Dani ‘s. And yes, I know we ‘re supposed to talk only about the plain slices, which are great, but they ‘re besides kind of known for their pesto cut, which a bunch of locals get with crimson sauce added on acme .

Dani ‘s House of Pizza, 81-28 Lefferts Boulevard, Kew Gardens, NY 11415, 718-846-2849


photograph : Clay Williams .
As note pizza guys, all of us are much asked, “ What ‘s the best cut in the city ? ” and/or “ I live in [ Mister Rogers ‘ Neighborhood ], what ‘s the best slice near me ? ”

As we ‘ve said, none of us actually rank pizzeria, then to the first gear interview, you ‘re apt to get a long-winded answer filled with several options. For the second question, we ‘ll either have a neighborhood picking to toss out, or we ‘ll end up learning something new from a local ( which is always a good thing ) .

But these questions are n’t truly intended to elicit new information for the inquirer. They ‘re normally all about the inquirer testing for BS on our contribution, seeing if our answers jibe with theirs and whether they can trust our opinion .

For folks who grew up in deep Brooklyn, Delmar in Sheepshead Bay frequently serves as a litmus test. And rightly indeed. It ‘s a all right slice, with very evening tinge on the crust and tight proportions of cheese and sauce. The mozzarella is good-quality—it had a courteous pull to it when we visited—and there ‘s a adept amount of Romano on it, adequate to lend the slice a piquant, lemony note. The sicilian is very courteous and alight, excessively .

Delmar, 1668 Sheepshead Bay Road, Brooklyn, NY 11235, 718-769-7766

J & V Pizza

J&V Pizza
photograph : Adam Kuban .
The regular piece at this authentically retro Bensonhurst mainstay is very good, with salty cheese. There ‘s a singular, crunchy grandma piece. But the Sicilian ? Fantastic, inner light, and airy, with goopy tall mallow cascading down the sides. It ‘s the thing to get .

J & V Pizza, 6322 18th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11204, 718-232-2700

little Luzzo ‘s

Little Luzzo's
photograph : Clay Williams .
little Luzzo ‘s, on 96th Street between Park and Lexington, is a haunt for nearby Hunter High School students, all of whom seem to opt for the special : two shockingly good Margherita slices and a sodium carbonate or water for $ 5. It ‘s the best deal in the city for traditional, good New York–style pizza. The slice is kind of Joe’s-like : crisp, thin crust ; dark bake ; discrete areas of uncooked, crushed tomato sauce ; and aged mozzarella. And there ‘s a bonus on each cut : a couple of nubbins of fresh basil. I guess that ‘s why they call their regular slices Margheritas. No grated Romano on the slice, but they have a shaker full of the salty stuff on the anticipate .

little Luzzo ‘s, 119 E. 96th Street, New York, NY 10128, 212-369-2300

Luigi ‘s Pizza

Luigi's Pizza
photograph : Adam Kuban .
Luigi ‘s Pizza in Park Slope is an old-school place with a unplayful dough-management scheme. Second-generation owner Gio Lonzo ( Luigi ‘s son, who now runs the place ) has devoted the entire next-door shopfront to a series of refrigerators all set to different temperatures, which house the dough at different stages of its agitation. ( How can he afford this space ? The Lonzos own the build. ) It makes for a antic obviously slice with tons of spirit. Worth seeking out not entirely for the pizza but for the effortless cordial reception Gio and crew radiate—and for the authentic 1970s pizzeria vibration .

Ed finds the regular slice excellent, with perfect balance wheel and season, and he calls the grandma piece “ dapper. ” Scott ‘s appraisal is a sting stronger : “ It ‘s the definitive cut. It ‘s the truth. It ‘s the honest accuracy of New York pizza. ”

Luigi ‘s Pizza, 686 5th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11215, 718-499-3857

Nunzio ‘s

photograph : Clay Williams .
Despite the old admonition about judging a record by its cover, sometimes you truly can look at a slice and not want any function of it. One order is seeing a slice absolutely blanketed in cheese. That ‘s not the kind of slice Nunzio ‘s serves out in Staten Island. here, fiddling islands of tall mallow seem to float on a sea of basil-laced sauce, all atop a absolutely crisp-pliant crust .

Nunzio ‘s, 2155 Hyland Boulevard, Staten Island, NY 10306, 718-667-9647

Sac ‘s place

Sac's Place
photograph : Daniel Gritzer .
Sac ‘s is a large pizzeria-restaurant in Astoria that has the differentiation, after Patsy ‘s, of serving the merely early coal-oven slice in New York. They do the initial bake in the char oven, and when you arrange a piece, they reheat it in a standard gas-fired deck oven. There ‘s not a short ton of buzz around Sac ‘s, but it was the best slice on the Queens leg of our initial pizza crawl—thin, wrinkle, with a bright tomato sauce and merely enough cheese. It in truth should get more attention than it does .

Sac ‘s Place, 35-11 35th Ave, Astoria, NY 11106, 718-204-5002

Sal & Carmine

Sal & Carmine
photograph : Clay Williams .
The quintessential Upper West Side slice joint, located on Broadway between 101st and 102nd Streets. When it opened in 1965, on Broadway and 95th Street, it used to be just Sal ‘s. It ‘s now being run by Sal ‘s grandson Luciano. The slices are slightly bready, with good a trace of grind on the bottom, and they are identical bum, so much so that the fear slice-blotters have a field day at Sal & Carmine. The sauce is scantily apparent. The home is so old-school, there ‘s even a non-functioning slice windowpane in the front .

Sal & Carmine ‘s Pizza, 2671 Broadway, New York, NY 10025, 212-663-7651

A Final Word

slice from Sauce in the East Village. [ photograph : Clay Williams ] .
So that ‘s the state of the slice today, and we ‘re tidal bore to see what the future brings, as it appears the pace of reinvention has n’t slowed. For example, two more evangelist cut spots have opened : the long-awaited Paulie Gee ‘s Slice Shop in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, and Sauce Pizzeria in the East Village, which has some impressive bona fides. ( The owners worked with pizza adviser Anthony Falco, who made a name for himself at Roberta ‘s. )

Both are putting out some promise pies, but we left them off the list proper to give their slices some meter to mature. Based on what we ‘ve tasted, though, they seem to have internalized the best elements of the evangelist movement : They know they have to bring something new to the piece table and improve upon what ‘s already on offer, whether it ‘s from classical spots, vicinity stalwarts, or some of the cheffier operations on the scene. Any ambitious New York slice shop afford in 2019 or beyond will have to do the like if it hopes to distinguish itself in a pack of sincerely acme peers .