Pizza is taken seriously in the United States, where the question of which place boasts the best pie is subject to heated debate. Every state, city, and even restaurant has its own distinct spin on the Italian classic. Here are some of the best slices in each state, factoring in price and taste.
This pizzeria injects regional spice into this Italian specialty with its roasted habanero Southwestern-style sauce, available on any pie in lieu of marinara. Enjoy tabletop games at My Slice Of The Pie while waiting on a self-made pie or specialties such as the Al Pastor ($15 for 12 inches, $24 for 18).
New Haven-style pizza gives New York City a run for its money as the pizza capital of the Northeast with the family-owned Zuppardi's Apizza. The pizza highlights at this neighborhood institution are the meatball marinara ($10 for a small) and the escarole and beans ($11.75 for a small).
This charming Italian eatery serves up authentic pies with great prices. The Sicilian deep dish slices at Café Napoli are hearty and rich (a slice of cheese is $2.50), and those in search of a gourmet pizza can try the artichoke, tomato, and garlic pizza for $13 for a 14-inch medium.
Multiple locations in Atlanta
You can grab a New York-style slice at Fellini's for $2.75, or $13 for a medium pie. Traditional toppings are available. Fellini's Special comes in regular or Sicilian crust and includes toppings such as meatballs, green olives, peppers, sausage, and mushrooms ($19 for a medium).
This pizzeria in the Crescent City’s Bywater neighborhood earned its reputation as the city's premier pizza place with foldable slices as cheap as they are delicious ($2.25 for cheese). Specialty pies and toppings include vegan peppadew, hot coppa, and sriracha pineapple.
Minneapolis, St. Paul
With three locations in St. Paul and Minneapolis, Black Sheep uses coal ovens to craft thin pizza crusts to crunchy perfection. The menu includes 12 pizzas and a host of ingredients for guests to design their own 12- or 16-inch sizes. A 16-inch cheese pizza is just $9.25
When in Sin City, try Dom Demarco's cheese-and-pepperoni Di Fara special ($30 for the full order) — if you can resist Northeast favorites such as littleneck clam or pesto and grilled chicken. Every pizza can be ordered in New York-style or as a Detroit square-pan pizza.
At Peri Brothers, pizza comes New York style or with Sicilian thick crust, and there's a Queens style (upside-down Sicilian), and even a "Grandma Sicilian" with basil, tomatoes, and thin crust. Fresh toppings include buffalo mozzarella, fresh basil, and ground sirloin, and 14-inch New York-style pies start at $12.
Fargo, Grand Forks, and Mentor
All three Rhombus Guys locations are known for thin-crust pizzas and colorful specialty pies. At the Fargo location, try the T-Rex, loaded with Canadian bacon, bacon, beef, and a few other choice proteins ($10 and up), or the Tater Tot ($11 and up).
Oklahoma City and multiple locations elsewhere
This 19-location chain (two in Arkansas) has a long list of pizzas starting with a small cheese for $9.25 and almost any topping imaginable. The 13-ingredient large Xtreme is among the most expensive, at $23.25 for a 16-inch. Recommended: the vegetarian Pizza of the Gods, with olive oil and artichoke hearts.
In addition to baking Neapolitan-style pizzas in a wood-fired oven, Figidini boasts of using powder-fine, European-style "00" flour. Prices begin at $16 for a marinara and never exceed $22 (for a burrata made with San Marzano tomatoes, salametto piccante, and shaved garlic).
D'Allesandro's Pizza offers hand-tossed pizzas with lots of variety for not much money: 10-inch pizzas start as low as $8.25, and the 16-inch Supreme and Greek pizzas top out at $22.25. A menu highlight is the Beetnick ($9.75 for a small) with goat cheese, bacon, rosemary, and golden beets.
It's a fine bar, but where the Independent Ale House truly shines is its cheap pizzas — large enough to serve two for $11 or less. The mashed potato pizza with bacon bits and garlic-mashed red potatoes is $10, and The Hasselhoff cheeseburger pizza is $11.
Diners at Hog & Hominy get "Italian dining with a Southern drawl," including unique specialty pies such as the Prewitt ($16) with fontina cheese, boudin sausage, and scrambled eggs. A basic pomodoro pizza with tomato sauce, garlic, oregano, and Parmesan (available for lunch only) is $12.
Four trailers and bricks-and-mortar locations bring the crunchy-crust pan pizza of Detroit to Austin. At Via 313, the signature Detroiter pie ($12 for a "small" large enough to serve two) is made with two kinds of pepperoni layered on either side of the mozzarella. There are thin-crust, bar-style pies too.
Salt Lake City
The Pie Pizzeria has several locations and is famed for its fragrant garlic and four kinds of crusts, including a spicy "ApocalyptDough," on a wide-ranging menu starting with a 12-inch cheese pizza for $10. Oh, and it delivers — by mail, anywhere in the United States.
A modest eatery on the outskirts of Virginia Beach, Pungo Pizza has a full game room as well as a few ways to enjoy pizza. Basic pizzas are $10 or $14; there are stuffed pizzas for $14 or $18; and a "roll-up" (different from a $10 calzone) is $8 or $8.50.
In a cozy, wood-paneled house, Lola's serves up pizzas from a stone-hearth oven. There are small specialty pies for $13 (large versions are $18 to $20) with fig jam, flank steak, and more, including a Breakfast Pizza with bacon, eggs, mozzarella, scallions, tomatoes, and chives.
Pizzas at the Crowbar & Grill are cracker-thin and crispy, starting at $9 for a 10-inch pie or $15 for an 18-inch starting from any of five sauces: red sauce, ricotta, olive oil and herbs, French onion white, or Baja. The Billhook specialty pizza features ground lamb, tzatziki, and feta for $13 to $20.