Philadelphia’s rich Italian history makes it one of the best places to find tasty and authentic pizza, be it gourmet or greasy grab-and-go. The passion for pie is real in the City of Brotherly Love, and our list features some of the best pizzerias in town.
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Eat your heart out, Booklyn, because this Philly favorite was named the “Best Pizza in America” by Bon Appétit. Pizzeria Beddia in Fishtown finds greatness in simplicity—there are no seats, there is no phone, two employees craft the pies, and only three selections are offered. A spicy, pickled-chiles-topped pie, a classic cheese, and a seasonal option round out the menu. The chewy-crispy crust and balanced ratio of sauce and cheese are topped with dried oregano, a healthy shaving of aged-Gouda-like Old Gold cheese, and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.
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Marc Vetri, a famed Philadelphia chef who’s known around the country, dishes up delicious pies at his namesake pizzeria. Check out locations in Callowhill and Rittenhouse Square for the Neapolitan-style, wood-fired pizzas. Our favorites are the “Crudo,” with prosciutto, buffalo mozzarella, and parmesan, and the “Tonno,” with Sicilian tuna, onion, mozzarella, tomato sauce, and hot chili peppers. Also, it’s worth trying the popular rotolo small plate, which is a morsel of pizza dough stuffed with mortadella, ricotta, and pistachio pesto.
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If you’re looking for a great slice made with local ingredients and organic produce, wander over to Nomad Pizza. Head to the location in the Bella Vista neighborhood for soft and chewy Neapolitan-style; if you’re more in the mood for a thin and crispy crust, check out the Roman-style focus at the Midtown Village spot (which is also a great place to grab a bite before heading to a show on the Avenue of the Arts). Here, we recommend: the umami overload “Truffle Pecorino,” loaded with fresh buffalo cheese, earthy mushrooms, truffle oil, and egg yolk drizzled over the top; or the “Spicy Soppressata,” with a hot combination of Italian salami with tomato, mozzarella, basil, garlic, red pepper, and a light drizzle of honey over the top to smooth out the spice.
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Have you ever been to a pizza museum? For a truly quirky experience, head to the Frankford Avenue section of Fishtown to check out Pizza Brain, the world’s first museum and shop dedicated to the international favorite. Over 550 artifacts and pizza memorabilia aren’t the only things that make this place cool—the restaurant, dedicated to serving “Pizzadelphia,” offers a list of eclectic pies. Check out their “Kira Tierston” for smoked bacon, brown sugar, red onion, and oven-roasted brussel sprouts, or the “Granny Divjack,” a sweet and savory blend of gorgonzola, almonds, granny smith apples, and caramelized onions.
Dock Street Brewery and Restaurant
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For a delicious slice and great craft beer to pair with it, Dock Street Brewery and Restaurant in University City is the place to go. The crust is chewy and thick so it can support creative toppings and big flavor. The “Flammenkuche” is a must-try with onion, apple-wood smoked bacon, gruyere, and crème fraiche. The “Sausage” pie is also noteworthy, with crème fraiche or tomato sauce, char-grilled sausage, roasted peppers, caramelized onions, garlic, and fresh herbs creating a one-of-a-kind flavor profile.
Other Spots That Won’t Disappoint: Barbuzzo, Osteria, Santucci’s, Garces Trading Company, Birra, and Zavino
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