Why NYC's Iconic Pizza Is So Tough To Replicate found on kottke. Seriously, there is no good pizza in San Francisco. Whenever I go to NY I manage to get at least one slice of pizza from a random shop, and it's better than any pizza I've ever had in California.

If you think you know, please leave me a comment. You should know that I have been to Delfina, Arinell's, Little Star, and A16. (SF does make a god damn good burger though.)



I can't personally vouch, but I think LuLu might have some decent pizzas.


I loves me some thick Sicilian pizza, and there's none better (outside of Italy) that Marcellos on Castro Street.


SF is pretty slim pickins, but over in Berkeley, I *absolutely* recommend both Pie In The Sky & Giola's. I even posted about my first visit to both of them a couple of years ago:

Pre-Christmas Pizza Quest

In the city proper, I guess try out Goat Hill & Orgasmica but I wouldn't get my hopes up too much about either one.


Yeah, there's nothing here that can stand up to the NY goodness, but I'd say Deja Vu at 16th 'round Guerrero is worth a shot. The one thing they do which I haven't seen anywhere else is when one orders a slice, they cut a fresh slice of dough rather than pulling out an old slice of cheese, throwing on the topping and then chucking it in the oven. Tasty stuff indeed.


I can't suggest SF pizza but I can contribute to the discussion: Batali is right that it's the water. There's a pizza parlor in Los Angeles (Johnnie's on Santa Monica Blvd) that goes so far as to filter its water to replicate New York's mineral content. But reports from New Yorkers are that even there it's not quite the same.

I also suspect discrepancies in water, and other raw material sourcing, is what keeps even the best American baked bread from tasting as good as a simple Parisian baguette.


A lot of people say good things about Za's. I think it's quite good, but I'm not sure it's NY pizza, per se.


Next time you're in NYC, you should make it a point to go to DiFara in Midwood, Brooklyn. In my opinion Dom DeMarco at Di Fara makes the best pizzas in all of NYC.


Yes, definitely correct about the water. It also explains NY bagels vs. bagels anywhere else.

SF's Delfina pizza is the closest I've had to Grimaldi's (Brooklyn), which is my favorite. Naples style, more saucy than cheesy -- though, yes, the crust falls short just the tiniest bit.


As a west-coast born and raised fellow, where can I get California pizza in NYC?

(Full disclosure: I'd rather have a Giordano's pizza from Chicago)

Mike Monteiro

Good pizza doesn't come from restaurants; it comes from parlors. And great pizza comes from Philadelphia.

James Gross

I've been out here for a little while and I'm not too hot on it. My favorite pizza is still Zachary's in Berkeley.

That said, I've been caught by Kate more than once getting a 4am slice from Rivoli down the street. That's the kind of pizza eating you can't do in SF.

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before this i wrote forever a 12 year-old boy after this i wrote holding a grudge


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