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Dec 16, 2002 03:01 PM

Best Pizza in N.J.

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In Ramsey, N.J., try Pizzette, a new, intimate Italian bistro with oak fired brick oven which produces tasty, thin, crispy crust (almost crepe-like) pizza. The red sauces are fresh and intensely flavored. BYOB. Enjoy!

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  1. I agree. Lovely, lovely pizza and pasta with rich red sauce. It is located in a strip shopping center in Ramsey, NJ at 31 West Main St (201) 934-6000 BYOB This is a newly opened "find", sure to become very busy, very soon.

    35 Replies
    1. re: Rima

      Hands down, the pizza at DELORENZO'S on Hudson Street in Trenton.

      Perhaps the best in the country, no lie.

      1. re: RP

        That's no pizza, that's tomato pie! I love it but never confuse the two.

        1. re: Trentonbooster

          Sorry about that; I was translating into North Jerseyese.

          1. re: RP

            it comes off as pretty parochial to call anything best in the nation. best in the neighborhood or area might be more within the critic's realm.

            and that's what delorenzo's is. worth a minor detour. and that's a compliment.

            the fact that it's the only decent meal i've ever had in the trenton area, well, that's another reason for the detour.

            1. re: wizkor

              I dunno about that. I have become a pizza fanatic over the course of my 45 years, and from Old Forge-style pizza in NE Penna, to Vince the Pizza Prince in Scranton, PA, to Pepe's in New Haven, CT, to Garibaldi's in Brooklyn to the several great pizza parlors on Arthur Ave in the Bronx to the coal oven pizzas in NYC and Philly, to Tacconelli's and Celebre's in Philadelphia, to Pete & Elda's in Neptune, to the many deep-dish versions in Chicagoland to the North End pizzerias in Boston to the doughy pies in Denver to the wacky Gold Coast pizzas in central and Southern California , I've tried to try them all, and STILL, Delorenzo's on Hudson St. in Trenton (not to be confused with the location on Hamilton Ave.) outshines them all for consistency, superbly smoky crust, judicious use of crushed tomato sauce and mozzarella and careful baking.

              And I will keep trying as many new pizzas as I can, but, for now, nothing has been able to knock Delorenzo's off it's top spot.

              1. re: RP

                No claim to nationwide title but in my little area - which includes a lot of good pizza - Joe's in Vauxhall (Union) NJ is great.

                1. re: EW

                  Would Joe's be any relation to Jack and Joe's, long since gone from Five Points in Union?

                  My candidate: Spiritos in Elizabeth.

                  1. re: Bob Libkind

                    Spirito's....IS the best pizza on the east coast.....has been for 40 years or so!

                    1. re: Judy
                      Michael Rieger

                      I have been to many great pizza places. Like others, I would have a hard time saying one is better as there are different styles. I remember Pepe's in New Haven, Corky's in E. Hartford (he has since moved to Texas), Giordanos in Chicago, etc....

                      So far, since moving back to Northern NJ, I have found two excellent but very different pizza places:

                      Il Forno in Warren has excellent wood fired, brick oven pizza with fresh mozzarella.

                      Reservoir Tavern in Parsippany serves up a terrific NY Style pizza (best I have had so far) with corn meal on the exquisitely crisped bottom of the pie. Not a fancy place, but great pizza

                      1. re: Michael Rieger

                        Maruca's on the Seaside heights boardwalk is the best hands down.Huge slices with a swirling sauce that is like a work of art ,delicous high quality cheese and sausage , and they will fed ex a pie to anywhere in the country....maruca's rules!!!

                        1. re: dave
                          Cheryl MacIntosh

                          I have been searching for my favorite pizza of all time. It use to be Poppy's Pizza in Piscataway Nj. Does anyone know about this pizza?

                          1. re: Cheryl MacIntosh

                            I grew up on Washington Ave. in Piscataway and knew Poppy's on Stelton Rd. well. It didn't have a traditional crust, but had a black crispy edge around the pizza. When they had a party at the Eisenhower school up the road, the pizza came from Poppy's. I haven't returend to Piscataway in 30 years, but from looking at the "streetviews" on Google maps, it looks like there's a place called Fratelli's in more or less what I remember as the location for Poppy's.

                          2. re: dave

                            Oh god, i love Maruca's - and now i'm hungry.

                            1. re: dave

                              Just went to Maruca's at Seaside on the boardwalk and yah, they're the best in that area. Last time we did 3 Bros and it wasn't as good. The sausage is awesome. YUM!

                            2. re: Michael Rieger

                              I grew up in Parsippany, NJ, and the Reservoir Tavern has the greatest pizza in the area. Big gorgeous crust w/ great sauce and dripping cheese. The wait is too long for me, but if you go at 5:00 during the week, you can get in!

                              1. re: Michael Rieger

                                Pepe's was just on the travel channel regarding the coal oven pizza. Thats how I found this site. Funny

                                1. re: Michael Rieger

                                  my vote for best pizza in Northern NJ is Ritacco's in Nutley! I DREAM about their pizza:-D

                                2. re: Judy

                                  Anything from Spirito's is da best! I've had great bar pie there for 35 years!

                                  1. re: Judy

                                    Spiritos is an institution, has over the top good pizza and probably ranks in top 10 in Greater NY pizza. Had my first Spiritos 40'ish years ago as well, but there are a few in NYC and in New Haven that I like better.

                              2. re: RP

                                I agree with you about Delo's on Hudson, but the white clam pie is far better at DeLo's on Hamilton. Have you been to Totonno's in Coney Island?

                                1. re: Paulie Gee

                                  Just saw Totonno's on the travel channel. Is it worth the drive out to Brooklyn. L&B pizza is worth the trip to Brooklyn. Spimoni Garden is Good too.

                                  1. re: CarbBoy

                                    L&B and Spumoni Gardens are the same thing - it is called L&B Spumoni Garden. I grew up a few blocks south of the place. Ate there a lot. Not just great pizza, great Italian fare in general.

                                    Totonno's is so worth it. Definitely excellent.

                                    I live in Warren County now and the best in this area is DeCola's on Route 31 S in Washington. The owner is from Brooklyn, NY. Such good pizza.

                                    Also pretty darned good is Family Pizza in the Port Colden Mall in Washington (it is an outdoor shopping center but it is called a Mall). Also has relation to Brooklyn.

                                    When I was a kid, Lenny's Pizza on 86th off 20th Avenue was the pizza place to go to. It was in Saturday Night Fever. The pictures of Travolta eating their pizza were all over the walls.

                                    1. re: CarbBoy

                                      We love L&B squares and travel periodically from NJ to bring home 1/2 sheets of 18 squares. They last no more than a day with our kids home.

                                    2. re: Paulie Gee

                                      i dream about Delorenzo's white clam pie. add on some cherry peppers and you're in heaven.

                                    3. re: RP
                                      Frank C. Franzonia

                                      DeLorenzo's pizza is superb, particularly the sweet smack that comes from the generous tomato topping. (I do suspect the tomatoes are from California, not Italy, being a tad overly sweet, but that would be quibbling.)And the crust is amazingly flavorful for a place without a brick oven. If I were to be super critical, however, I would have to rate the cheese definitely not worthy of so exalted a setting. Still, DeLorenzo's is -- or was -- the best old-style pizza parlor in Jersey.

                                      1. re: RP

                                        My family is from Wilkes Barre PA and everytime they visit we have them bring "trays" of Victory Pig or Pizza Lovin!!! Old Forge pizza is quiet a treat but something you have to experience!
                                        As far as i know u Can't find anything like it down here
                                        My favs our Vics in BB, Pete & Elda's and Dons Pizza King in Belamar. Squan Tavern isn't that bad either. All thin crust though. Nothing like Old Forge!

                                      2. re: wizkor

                                        delorenzo's Trenton or Fed's in Freehold

                                    4. re: Trentonbooster

                                      Alas I have heard that Lorenzo's on Hudson Street is closing next week for good. Sigh.


                                    5. re: RP

                                      Agreed that Delorenzos in Trenton is the best in USA.

                                      1. re: RP

                                        Please see my post below, re: new Delo's in Hamilton at Risoldi's SuperMarket :>)

                                        1. re: RP

                                          Agreed. The best I've ever had. It's all subjective and I've eaten good pie in and around NYC for a long time.

                                          If I'm in the area, it's not a reach to drive the extra couple of miles and grab a pie from this place.

                                          1. re: RP

                                            I'd also have to add Mama Rosa's on Klockner Road in Hamilton NJ!!! There's just nothing like it!!

                                          2. re: Rima

                                            Agreed, hands down the best in NJ. I'm from New Haven so I can say best in the country ;-)

                                          3. We could spend hours talking about "THE BEST" pizza in NJ. Some of us would vote for Pete 'n Elda's in Neptune. Others would say Vercelli's in Highlands is best. There's a whole lot of good pizza going on
                                            in NJ so naming one the best is a bit tricky.

                                            9 Replies
                                            1. re: christina z

                                              I second the Pete & Elda's vote. I'd also add Vic's (Bradley Beach) to this list. I am a thin crust person.

                                              1. re: Julie

                                                Had Vic's yesterday on the way to the beach because of the exact thread. I thought it was mediocre. Too much of that orangey oily stuff that you get when too much oil and tomato sauce meet up. Maybe it was an off day?

                                                1. re: angelo04

                                                  one experience at vic's and i'll never go back. rude people made a bad pie taste even worse. you can do much better in the area- Pizza On Main in bradley beach is only 2 minutes down the street.

                                                  1. re: angelo04

                                                    Vics can be hit or miss for sure!

                                                  2. re: Julie

                                                    Third vote ..Now they have some of the same @ the Cabin in Howell

                                                    1. re: Julie

                                                      I agree about Pete & Eldas, but the waits sometimes are not worth it (like they care). Their house salad is sorta blah. Another "best bet" for outstanding Tomato Pie is "Tonys" in Long branch, NJ. They're "Pomodoro Pie" with fresh (real) Mozzarella is really good. Add some real sausage too!

                                                      1. re: Julie

                                                        For thin crust I agree with the Pete & Elda's (Neptune) top vote with a close second to Vic's (Bradley Beach). I'd also give some consideration to Vesuvio's in Belmar, though the finished product is sometimes inconsistent.

                                                        To stick with the same area I'd also have to cast a vote for best traditional pie to Santino's Pizza Etc in Neptune City. Its better than any of the pizzerias in Belmar or Bradley Beach (other than Vic's).

                                                      2. re: christina z

                                                        Yes, Ultra thin crust but needs to be kicked up a little in the taste department.
                                                        But I agree its a good pie.

                                                        1. re: christina z

                                                          I'm with you on the Pete & Eldas - a close second would be Vics in Bradley Beach.

                                                          But then again, I prefer thin crust...

                                                        2. For those who like simple, excellent pizza with thin crust: Either Val's Tavern(thin crust) or Briody's(paper thin crust). Both in Rumson.

                                                          2 Replies
                                                            1. re: 2chez mike

                                                              I tried Vals since it was sold from the original family. The pies are not the same, and not as good. The crispy thin crust is gone and the everyday cheese makes it tast like a slice from the mall. Too doughy and tastelss Sorry guys. Step it up.

                                                            2. Given the large Italian American population of NJ, it is inevitable that there would be scores of good (and some great) pizza places in the garden state. Hoboken has a branch of the famous Brooklyn pizzeria Grimaldis, for those who wish to stay on the west side of the Hudson. There is also a place on Springfield Ave in Berkeley Heights (Union County) called Marcellos which makes a delicious brick oven pie unlike any I have ever tasted. Thin crust, lots of sauce and fresh ingrediants. One pie is probably enough for two people (they are smaller than their regular pies which are also very good but not spectacular). My favorite is the primavera which has broccoli, artichokes and fresh tomatoes.

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: Jon Altman

                                                                Thanks for the Berkeley Heights tip - we've never tried Marcellos but now we'll have to... we like Natale's, also on Springfield Ave (or at that point it may be Valley Road) in Long Hill Twp (on the right, right before the Pathmark shopping center). The guys there are from Calabria, I think, and they make a mean pie.

                                                              2. Hey! How about the Star Tavern & Pizzaria on Dodd St. on the border of Orange and Montclair. They have great thin crust pizza, and a large menu of delicious dishes that go great with a pitcher of beer during a game on their large screen TV!

                                                                5 Replies
                                                                1. re: Football Fan

                                                                  In Essex County, the best thick crust pizza is Roman Gourmet in Maplewood. Marty's in Maplewood isn't quite as good, but delivers. Francesca's in Newark is also great for thick crust. Star Tavern has the best thin crust around, but Reservoir in South Orange is alright if you can't get up there, and delivers as well.

                                                                  1. re: DK

                                                                    I live in west orange and go to star tavern all the time. Its so far the best pizza i've ever had.

                                                                  2. re: Football Fan
                                                                    Jason Glushakow

                                                                    I've been to Star Tavern and its pretty great, but the best pizza has to go to Margherita's on Washington Ave. in Hoboken. What a great place.

                                                                    1. re: Jason Glushakow

                                                                      Maybe because I grew up eating pizza from the Star tavern, it has remained for me the definition of pizza. The pesto pizza is to die for.