Los Angeles may be known for its killer tacos, but it has a not-so-secret pizza scene that would convert any New York City slice loyalist. Over the last few years, dozens of pizza restaurants have popped up that combine Italian tradition with a uniquely Californian sensibility. From Detroit-style pies to New York-style slices, these are the 5 best pizzerias around Los Angeles.
Note, we lovingly left out New York City outposts like Roberta’s and Prince Street Pizza in order to celebrate the independent pizza spots that represent the fabric of Los Angeles.
Pizzeria Mozza is what arguably started the pizza movement in LA… so much so that every pie in town is compared to it. While others may come close, this pizza spot is in a league of its own. Owned by Nancy Silverton, these pizza pies are doughy and chewy with a crispy, crunchy crust that’s filled with air-bubbles. The toppings are fresh and seasonal, ranging from long-cooked broccolini with caciovallo cheese to a burrata and squash blossom pie that you can’t quit.
A chewy, nicely charred Neapolitan-style pizza is the name of the game here at Pizzeria Sei. The no-frills pizza joint has a small menu of seven pies, each with puffy, blistering edges that only a red-hot, dome-shaped oven can achieve. Standouts include a wood-fired prosciutto, egg and for di latte that you’ll want to eat for brunch every day of your life, as well as a briny pie with capers and anchovies.
Born out of a literary backyard in Altadena, Side Pie now has a brick-and-mortar location that serves up massive, greasy pizza slices that you can fold in half and eat curbside, a real homage to pizza-eating in Manhattan. Ingredients here are fairly classic with white pies loaded with ricotta, mozzarella, parmesan and garlic or a signature “Altadena,” that’s topped with pepperoni, ricotta and basil. For the green-enthusiast, the Bobby Green is where it’s at with kale, mozzarella and lemon oil.
Quarter Sheets Pizza Club.
Detroit-style pizza is seemingly taking over the country and with good reason, it’s saucy and delicious. Quarter Sheets Pizza Club span from those very Detroit roots, but makes no claims it’s the real deal — they bill themselves as Glendale’s #1 least authentic Detroit-style pizza. A pizza pop-up that’s now sprouted up in Echo Park, this Midwestern gems serves deep-dish, sauce-on-top pizza that satisfies, like the tomato pan pie with ricotta, the Sicilian corners with royal trumpet mushrooms, cured lemon, onion and summer savory, and the Roni’s house special, made with pineapple, guanciale, mozzarella, pickled fresno, red sauce and garlic chili oil.
U Street Pizza.
The sister restaurant of one of our favorite Italian spots in the city, U Street Pizza in Pasadena offers a California-inspired pizza concept featuring seasonal toppings and farm-sourced ingredients. The dough itself is made from artisanal wheat that’s sourced from farms in Washington and Vermont and then fermented for two beautiful days. The pies are topped with hyper-local ingredients and cooked in an electric deck oven, exactly as a Californian would. There’s a pie with Fiscalini cheddar from Modesto, a vegetarian option with grandma sauce and California olive oil, plus the go-big-or-go-home vodka pepperoni pizza that’s lathered in creamy vodka sauce and topped with Fresco peppers.