New York City is known for its bright lights, unfathomable skyscrapers and a melting pot culture filled with endless nightlife and amazing sightseeing destinations. But the true essence of the world’s most beloved city is held together by one thing. Pizza. And a whole lot of it. From the 24-hour dollar slice mini shops to the five-star restaurants serving gourmet pies, NYC has become the epicenter of the world’s most diverse pizza scene. Locals will take their family recipe to the grave before admitting another pizza shop trumps their own. And for that reason, there will never be a concrete list that truly ranks the best pies in the Big Apple. That doesn’t mean we can’t try. Here is Rad Season’s Top New York Pizza Spots. Hope you’re hungry.
This tiny shop off 9th Avenue brings out the best of the traditional Italian delicacy known as pizza. Be prepared to drool over their signature combination of crispy thin crust, homemade fresh mozzarella and savory tomato sauce. Enjoy great music with a friendly vibe while taking in the charming ambiance of this brick wall interior shop.
This true hole-in-the-wall pizza spot allows you to mix and match your toppings, order a slice or a whole pie and the ability to dine in or take out. A true Manhattan gem!
Rad’s Best Slice: “The Fancies” – gorgonzola cheese, ricotta, hot sopressata pork salami, truffle oil, fresh homemade mozzarella
Merilu Pizza Al Metro
Location: 791 9th Ave, New York
Opening Hours: Mon Closed. Tues 11am – 12am. Wens – Fri 11am – 2am. Sat 1pm – 2am. Sun 1pm – 2am
Let’s take this pizza quest down to south Brooklyn for a New York staple that was established in 1939. The old-school Italian counter specializes in sicilian square pizza and good ol’ fashioned soft serve ice cream. L&B Spumoni Gardens is now in its fourth generation and will forever be the family oriented pizza shop cemented in Brooklyn’s history books.
There is no other way to enjoy this New York favorite other than a thick slice of square pizza topped with fresh mozzarella and homemade tomato sauce on one of their iconic red picnic tables.
Rad’s Best Slice: “Sicilian” – Thick browned square crust with a soft interior and a cheesy, saucy top
L&B Spumoni Gardens
Location: 2725 86th St, Brooklyn, New York
Opening Hours: Sun – Thurs 11am – 12 midnight. Fri & Sat: 11am – 1am
Every New York tourist will head to Grimaldi’s in Dumbo, Brooklyn. For that reason, check out its sister counterpart Juliana’s. The lines are shorter and the pizza is just as good if not better.
In fact most locals prefer Juliana’s because of the classic coal-fired oven on Fulton Street. Patsy Grimaldi has been blessing the NYC pizza scene since the 90’s and his latest establishment under the Manhattan Bridge has definitely followed suit.
Rad’s Best Pie: “House Special No. 1” – mozzarella, scamorza affumicata, pancetta* (italian bacon), scallions and oregon-grown white truffles in olive oil
Location: 19 Old Fulton St, Brooklyn
Opening Hours: Everyday 11am – 10pm
Although tourists have been known to flock to this classic pizzeria, no all-time NYC pizza list could be complete without Joe’s. Without question, Joe’s Pizza is the premiere spot for late-night slices. Best part is, their pizza tastes just as good at 1 p.m. in the afternoon as it does at 2 a.m. when you are drunk off your ass.
It embodies what a true New York slice of ‘za is. Foldable, cheesy and saucy. Remember to bring some Washingtons to this Greenwich Village treasure. It’s cash only.
Rad’s Best Slice: “Cheese” – As simple and glorious as it gets
Location: 7 Carmine Street, New York
Opening Hours: everyday 10.30am – 4am
Topping our list at No. 5 is a north Brooklyn favorite known as Paulie Gee’s. This classic New York pizza shop brings only the most inventive pies to your table. Salivate over the smokey Hometown Brisket or the desirable Neffy’s Porkpie White with sweet Italian sausage and ricotta dollops and honey.
This gourmet spot delivers delicious wood-fired pizzas that are topped with unique and locally sourced ingredients. The dine-in shop has become so popular that the brand has expanded to Miami, Chicago, Baltimore and Columbus.
Rad’s Best Pie: “Cherry Jones” – fresh mozzarella, Gorgonzola cheese, prosciutto di Parma, dried Bing cherries, and orange blossom honey
Location: 60 Greenpoint Avenue, Brooklyn, New York
Opening Hours: Mon to fri 6pm – 11pm. Sat 5pm-11pm. Sun 5pm – 10pm
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Feature image credit: Merilu Pizza Al MetroLast updated on Sep 13, 2022
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