If an Angeleno was in the mood for pie once upon a time, not so long ago, they had a few options. Chain-cooked cardboard, the marginally superior CPK, or a long commute to a few old-school family-run establishments. Fortunately, during the past ten years, ardent supporters of pepperoni perfection, wood-fired pizza, and dough have spoken up. And everyone from immigrants to New York transplants using their nonna’s recipes to celebrity chefs like Nancy Silverton has stepped up to satisfy the demand. Any way you look at it, pizza is experiencing a true revolution in Los Angeles.
Even though Los Angeles isn’t particularly recognized for its pizza, we’re here to tell you that it deserves some credit. The number of ‘za restaurants is growing. And those that have opened up are making their pies using real-deal methods and traditions. LA has a wide variety of pizzas. From New York City slices that ooze cheese and grease to Neapolitan-style pizzas baked in big brick ovens. And certainly, people consume carbohydrates here. Here is a list of the top pizza places in Los Angeles.
Jon & Vinny’s
ADDRESS: 412 N Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036-1717, USA
A few years ago, Animal’s James Beard-winning owners Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo expanded their restaurant empire by acquiring this all-day Italian eatery. This unassuming establishment serves house-made pasta and pizzas that straddle the line between the Naples staple and American delivery on Fairfax, amidst hipster sneaker boutiques and Jewish souvenir shops. Try Sonny’s Favorite, which features grilled Nueske’s bacon, grana Padano, and onion, or the LA Woman, a Margherita with burrata that has been elevated. For those who think having leftover crust is wicked, they cunningly sell extra dips (marinara, Italian, and ranch). It’s constantly busy.
ADDRESS: 1650 Colorado Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90041, USA
This Eagle Rock establishment that accepts just cash is retro in the finest possible ways. Since 1955, the Martorana family has owned and run the ice cream business with a vintage neon sign, utilizing family recipes. Red and white checkered tablecloths cover the tables, and Occidental students and tattooed parents are crammed into green pleather booths together with their ravenous children. There is always access to cheese powder and red pepper flakes. And the pizza is consistently great with delicately applied sauce, bubbling cheese, and chewy dough. Make reservations in advance to avoid waiting, especially on weekends.
ADDRESS: 641 N Highland Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036, USA
Mozza was the birthplace of Los Angeles’ most recent pizza revival and was founded by Nancy Silverton, Joe Bastianich, and Mario Batali (who resigned in 2017 amid several sexual misconduct charges). Eaters were drawn to a plain spot south of Hollywood on Highland by the names alone. The wood-fired pizzas kept them coming back because of its distinctive crunchy yet fluffy crust made with buckwheat (so it’s practically health food, right?) and decadent toppings like leeks, stinging nettles, taleggio, and guanciale. It’s first-come, first-served at the bar. Save room for butterscotch budino and make reservations up to a month in advance.
ADDRESS: 2100 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026, USA
Similar to Jon & Vinny’s, the history of this Echo Park restaurant begins with a critically acclaimed chef (in this case, Zach Pollack of Alimento) devouring a longtime neighborhood staple (Pizza Buona), redesigning its interior (slick black tile and dark wood) while keeping small nostalgic nods to the past, and upgrading the traditional family-style Italian-American restaurant experience to include heftier prices but ultimately better product. Pizzas with enormous dough bubbles, charred edges, and a solid enough base to support fresh ingredients and premium cold cuts are wonderful. If you want a pie with pineapple and Canadian bacon on top, head here.
ADDRESS: 11712 San Vicente Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90049, USA
One of a select group of pizza places that made the late reviewer and hometown hero Jonathan Gold’s list of the best 101 LA restaurants was this Brentwood establishment. Chef Daniele Uditi begins with his unique slow dough, produced with Italian flour and fermented and proofed for two days with the support of actor Chris O’Donnell and the Sprinkles couple. He includes both intentionally sourced toppings and a mixture of imported products (such as fior di latte mozzarella and San Marzano tomatoes grown for the restaurant) (squash blossoms, artichokes, avocados). Choosing take-and-bake will allow you to bake your pizza at home. The cacio e pepe is exceptional and lovely. It is advised to make reservations, and a West Hollywood chapter will open soon.
ADDRESS: 1305 Portia St, Los Angeles, CA 90026
Since 2020, there have been an unprecedented number of LA locations of Detroit-style pizzerias. However, as more establishments pop up, it gets harder to distinguish between those that are following the trend correctly and those that are merely cashing in. Quarter Sheets is operating properly. The former Pandemic pop-up now occupies a modest spot in Echo Park and has a devoted following that consistently sells out of pizza. On inch-high borders that snap and crackle with each mouthful, the focaccia-like crust is thick, crispy, and flaky. As opposed to the exterior, which is with sweet red sauce, the interior is soft and pillowy. Make sure you order whatever the day’s homemade dessert is.
ADDRESS: 3520 W Burbank Blvd, Burbank, CA 91505
There are many traditional pizzerias in the Valley, and their patrons argue over which has the tastiest pizza. To Dino’s, we are loyal. Order the lasagna pizza, which is with Italian sausage, meatballs, and ricotta. With over 38 unique pizzas on the menu, this Burbank institution can feel a little disorganized. Despite the fact that the toppings are expertly arranged and the crust is crunchy and medium-thick, the pizza might have easily been messy. Dino’s offers quick takeout, but they also allow customers to eat in their kooky dining room, which has the atmosphere of someone’s grandparents’ fishing cabin.
ADDRESS: 710 E 4th Pl, Los Angeles, CA 90013
First of all, let’s be friends if you’ve ever wondered what would happen if someone coupled a rectangle pie made like your grandmother’s with a thick crust made like Sicily. Second, the Arts District restaurant De La Nonna is already doing that. The pies, which are similar to focaccia, feature a substantial dough. Which is golden-crisp on the bottom but puffy and mushy underneath layers of sauce and cheese. The more popular topping combinations change seasonally. Such as roasted Japanese sweet potatoes with dollops of zesty pesto or charred kale and pancetta. Which are also expertly executed. Purist selections like a Margherita with fresh mozzarella are such justice. A low-key pizza party with a huge terrace, and the occasional live DJ set. And an excellent beer menu will make you want to tell your friends about it later.