Among other things, America has become known for its love of pizza, and from east to west, nearly every city has something unique to offer. While the big chains tend to dominate in some areas, some of the best sources of a remarkable pie are those local pizza shops just around the corner. Let’s take a look at the top five from some different sources – maybe one of these pizza delis will be in your neighborhood.
Philadelphia Tops This List
It may come as little surprise that the first contender on this list from Food & Wine comes from Philadelphia. This Pennsylvania metropolis is as well respected for pizza as it is for those hearty Philly cheesesteak hoagies. Founded by renowned chef Marc Vetri, Vetri Pizzaria offers more than the usual fare. Soft and chewy crusts are topped with items like prosciutto crudo, roasted fennel, and homemade mortadella. Adding a taste explosion comes easy with seasoned ricotta cheese rolled into every crust. Sicilian pistachio pesto is baked into the dough.
Frank Pepe’s Is For Seafood Lovers
USA Today favors Frank Pepe’s white clam pizza, but, for this delicacy, you’ll have to travel even farther north to New Haven, Connecticut. The trip promises to be worth it because Frank Pepe’s shucks fresh clams for each pie and tops the signature pizza with garlic, olive oil, oregano, and grated parmesan cheese. Adding bacon enhances the smoky flavor.
Head South For Traditional Pizza
The north doesn’t corner the market on a great pizza pie. In Birmingham, Alabama, Post Office Pies serves wood-fired pizzas. The name of the shop comes from the fact that an old post office was converted into the now famous pizzeria. Co-owner John Hall worked as a top chef in some of New York City’s finest restaurants, before returning home to give the people of Birmingham the best pizza money can buy. The Swine is a favorite with locals. It’s a slow-baked crust (12 hours in the oven) topped with fresh salami, bacon, and pepperoni.
The Crust Of This Pizza Is A Mystery
Totonno’s Pizzeria Napolitano tops another list and, while all of the ingredients are fresh and chosen with care, it’s the crust that keeps people talking. Unfortunately, owners Antoinette Balzano and Louise “Cookie” Ciminieri keep the recipe for their dough a mystery. Yet, locals rave about the classic pepperoni pizza, which comes loaded with a hearty helping of mozzarella, pepperoni, fresh mushrooms, sauce, a light coating of parmesan, and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
Chicago Makes A List, Of Course
You can’t have a look at the nation’s best pizzas without taking a trip to Chicago, the home of the deep dish pizza. Pequod’s Pizza has been serving traditional deep dish pizzas to Chicago locals and visitors since the 70s, and owner Keith Jackson has no plans to change that menu item. One favorite is the Italian sausage pizza, which includes layers upon layers of cheese. Finally, the sauce is added and topped with the seasoned sausage. Cheese caramelizes around the crust for an extra crispy and chewy treat.