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Pizza Slices

Hi, I'm looking for the best slices in Manhattan. I've read all about the great coal oven places in Manhattan and Brooklyn, but most seem to be whole pie sit-down restaurants.

Where are your favorite places to walk in and get a classic NYC slice -- thin, and dripping with cheese, so you gotta fold it?

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  1. Joe's on Bleecker is one of my favorites...

    1 Reply
    1. re: Yaxpac

      The slices at Joe's seem to have changed since they moved to the middle of the block. This used to be a destination spot for me, but no more.

    2. You can get a coal over slice at Patsy's in Easy Harlem. Pizza documentaries claim that they in fact invented the slice (in a era when the first few NY pizzerias refused to cut up their creations).

      I have three contraversial recs for you:

      1. Rays on Columbus and 83rd: typical NY slice
      2. DeMarco's: very interesting and unique slice
      3. Rivoli II on Husdon and Christopher is great too

      And one contraversial statement:

      Aside from a few standout slices, they're mostly all the same.

      And finally: search this site a bit more. This subject comes up about every week. (And DON'T ask for the best cheeseburger in NYC. That comes up enough already.)

      4 Replies
      1. re: NAtiveNewYorker

        no rays !!!! Rays assures you a nasty slice.

        1. re: randumbposter

          Don't forget though, that the Ray's are not connected. They are all trading on the raging success of Ray's famous on 11th street, back in the 70s. Oops, my age is showing.

          1. re: prunefeet

            Is that the Ray's Famous on 11th and 6th?

            1. re: jakew8

              No. It's some random Ray's (the name is not trademarked) that has a terrific plain slice, in my opinion. I found it better than any other UWS slice (Sal & C., Francesca's, Rigoletto, Traviata, etc.) Reminded me of old NYC slices, the crust especially.

              We all have different tastes I guess. (My pizza slice tasting was side by side with Sal & C. Drove around and collected various slices on the UWS. Then tried them side by side in the car. Sal & C. was not that good too me. V&T did well.)

      2. There are several Bravo! pizza places around. They're pretty good for standard slices. My only complaint is that sometimes the bottom crust gets too cooked (read: burned) when they re-heat the slices in the oven. If you can, get a slice off a pie right out of the oven so that it won't need to be put back in.

        2 Replies
        1. re: jakew8

          I haven't been there in a while, but the Bravo's on Park (20th/21st) used to have a fresh mozarella slice that's twice the price of the regular slice, but really excellent.

          1. re: jakew8

            Bravo on Park isn't bad, but not really New York style (thick crust), and not a slice to go out of your way for.

            The Bravo on 5th is terrible. Hard to believe they are related.

          2. I like the plain slices at Bella Napoli, on Madison and 31st.

            1. I love Pizza 33 at 33rd and 3rd Avenue. Great slices with a crispy crust, soft cheese, a little oily (cheese has oils, after all) and cracker-crisp crust. Mmmm - now I want one.

              1. Just wanted to agree about Joe's on Bleecker.

                  1. Nino's on 3rd ave between 91st & 92nd street in bay ridge Brooklyn.

                    eggplant slice if you like a bready slice & grandma's for thin crust
                    great pizza....& they sell it by the slice!


                    1. And here's a trick: go during a busy time when the pizza hasn't sat around and order a slice "cold...not heated"

                      It will be warm enough but not scalding hot.

                      1. When I worked downtown I frequented Little Italy Pizza on Park Place. I thought it was a pretty good slice.

                        1. Sal and Carmines on 101 and B'way. Majestic on Cortlandt.

                          1. Mimma's on 84th & 2nd Ave... Get a pepperoni slice from a pie that has been sitting a little while not one that just came out & have them reheat it for you. The crust stays crunchy & the topping oozes. My personal fave...

                            7 Replies
                            1. re: Fallon

                              the poster above that recommended the Ray's on 83rd and Columbus may do need to do a little more homework....that place defines what is wrong with the tradional NY slice, it is terrible. It is is not even the best slice within a few blocks of there. Garlic bob's is far superior.

                              I had my first slice of Joe's since they moved the other night after a few cocktails and damn it hit the spot!.....if it has to be a slice on the UWS sal and carmines is the only way to go...

                              1. re: Cpalms

                                I live on the UWS & agree the Ray's on Columbus is pretty bad. A new place recently opened up on B'way in the upper 70's I think called Abadanno's or Abato's or something like that-I haven't been yet but will check it out soon.
                                Haven't tried Sal & Carmines so I need to add that to my list as well. The other Ray's on Amsterdam & 82nd closed down...

                                1. re: Fallon

                                  It's Abatinos - part of the mini chain including 1 location in the old Joe's. Average at best.

                                  I haven't been to Sal and Carmine's lately but recent posts indicate major downhill alert.

                                  I think Joe's is still a fine slice.

                                2. re: Cpalms

                                  I've done my homework. I eat slices side by side and rank them (see above post).

                                  I guess we have different tastes. (For example, I HATE Garlic Bob's).

                                3. re: Fallon

                                  You're thinking of *Mimi's* on *Lex* and 84th. GREAT slice, and it has been since they were 1/3 their size back in 1977.

                                  1. re: NAtiveNewYorker

                                    Native: I know Mimi's on Lex & 80 something as well but I am referring to Mimma's on 2nd Ave & 84th right on the corner. The first few times I ate there I thought it was called Momma's... Try the pepperoni slice that has been reheated (for the crunch)... good stuff...

                                    1. re: Fallon

                                      Yes. My mistake. Mimma's. (The post-Dorrian's drunken pizza place.) Been there forever.

                                4. I've been to a few of these places--Joe's, Mimma's, Sal and Carmines. I would recommend the overlooked Bleeker Street Pizza (Corner of Bleeker and 7th) over all of them. Make sure to order the "Nonna Maria."

                                  1. Oh, and I would add Two Boots (various locations) for a great slice with more elaborate toppings.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: rufustfirefly

                                      I have to disagree re: Two Boots. Their pizza is vile, even after a couple of drinks.

                                    2. i'll throw in the slices at adrienne's on stone street. now that they moved all the outdoor tables inside they have slices. get the pepperoni!

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: jon

                                        I used to work downtown & once a week would sneak over to adrienne's & get one of their wonderful rectangular slices... Good stuff...Too bad my office moved to midtown...

                                      2. also... though not necess standard, plain slices...

                                        * vodka slice at pomodoro's in lil italy (spring & mulberry)
                                        * regular slice at rosario's in LES (orchard & stanton)
                                        * grandma's slice (square) at maffei (22nd & 6th ave)
                                        * demarco's regular slice (hit or miss, but when you get a good batch... it's pretty damn good)... houston & thompson.

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: thievery

                                          big up to maffei's, yes, and also big up to rosario's, definitely a cheap gem in the late night category of the LES

                                          1. re: bigjeff

                                            thirded on rosarios--doing the damn thing.

                                        2. Joe's has gone totally lame and inedible. At least downtown, Bleecker St. Pizza on 7th Ave is the call. It was hard making the change after years of loyalty to Joe's, but BSP is putting out a much better slice. Also the vibe at Joe's has become less friendly, as they rush to serve dry (long ago cooked) pie to out-of-towners.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: sing me a bar

                                            I am glad I am not the only person who can't stand Joe's.

                                          2. Ultimate Pizza on 57th and First

                                            1. l'asso (mott st @ kenmare st) in nolita. somewhat newish place (has been open about 2 years or so); it doesn't look they'd serve slices based on the decor, but yeah, they do. i'm pretty sure their oven is wood-fired.

                                              as for joe's, i'm really starting to dislike that place more and more. i agree that their quality has taken a turn for the worse, and it's totally not worth going during less busy times, as their slices that have been been sitting around and reheated are particularly mediocre.

                                              the pizzas at joe's are better when the owner himself makes them (and more importantly, mans the oven). i still go here once in a while when it's late and i'm hungry, but i definitely don't enjoy this place the way i used to back in high school and college.

                                              8 Replies
                                              1. re: surly

                                                I have not been to Joe's since it moved/closed the original. that is tough news to hear.

                                                I would like to add that the Pizza Box around the corner from Joe's on Bleecker street also makes a fine slice.

                                                Also, Little Italy Pizza near Grand Central makes a very good slice too.

                                                1. re: surly

                                                  I tried Joe's several times. I tried to like it, I wanted to like it, but I was disappointed every single time and decided it is just not for me.

                                                  1. re: mimolette

                                                    Yes, me too, sadly. I wanted to like Joe's but...

                                                    Prefer DeMarco's and Pizza Box for slices in the Village...

                                                    1. re: a_and_w

                                                      DeMarco's really is very very flavorful, I eat several slices a week there. Sometimes the crust can be underdone resulting in a very strange texture though. Just ask them to make sure it is crisp. I think they add a little cheese to the sauce itself and the crust probably has a bit of olive oil as well. It definitely has a lot of personality.

                                                      1. re: mimolette

                                                        It really is good (finally...after a year of mis-steps). I know others disagree, but I recommend it for those who haven't been yet.

                                                        Should have been in Time Out this week.

                                                        1. re: NAtiveNewYorker

                                                          Finally made it to DeMarco's. Thanks to you guys above, I've discovered flavors not found this side of the East River on my Sicilian with broccoli rabe slice, topped with some of the grated grana padano from the bowl on the countertop. Tasted it side-by-side with a regular slice from Joe's. The Joe's slice was good, particularly the cheese, but hardly great, and paled in comparison.

                                                          DeMarco's ain't Dom's, but it's a lot closer than Avenue J, and stands up on its own.

                                                          1. re: Spoony Bard

                                                            Finally-DeMarco's (and I) are vindicated. I stop there at least once a week and more often than not am rewarded. I desperately wanted to go back to DiFara's this weekend after the Time Out piece but couldn't find the time. As I've said many times on this board before, 80% of perfection is still pretty damn good.

                                                        2. re: mimolette

                                                          mim, I quite agree. I usually take out then crisp up the square in a frying pan.

                                                  2. I've found a few good slices at Joe's, but I'll only get the fresh mozzarella slice. I think all the other slices there are terrible. Bleecker Street Pizza makes some good slices. The Grandma slice and the fresh mozz is pretty good. I've never had a good slice at Ray's except for the one on Prince Street which was a bit oily, but still pretty good. Adrienne's is my new favorite and I could probably eat a whole pie if I put my mind to it. the square pies are amazing. Although, I had them deliver 2x and on the third time I called, they said they wouldn't deliver "all the way" to Fulton Street. Very weird. There is a really good place that makes an amazing Sicilian slice in Astoria/L.I.C. called Twins Pizza. They don't do subs, calzones, just pizza. Chewy, crunchy on the edges, and the cheese is browned on top. I'd usually get a couple for lunch when I worked over there.

                                                    1. Lucky aren't we spoiled. SO many fine pizza places. I travel alot and it is so hard to find a decent pizza place outside of nyc. Outside, Dominos is as good as it gets. Coming home, I am just so greatful enough for my neighborhoods tiny pizza shop. If you want INEDIBLE I know quite a handful of places in other states serving what seems to be frozen slices from your supermarket. This i kid not. JOES/RAYS/BRAVO..ETC might be overrated or exxagerated but they are certainly edible. Nobody has seen the pizzas I've seen.

                                                      1. Ultimate Pizza 57th and 1st

                                                        1. I've seen piza with arugula on top that hadn't been washed. Big grains of sand dotted the leaves. And the worst of all time, I had a pizza where the maker's Lee Press-On Nail had fallen onto the pizza and I didn't know it until I bit into it. It had a crescent moon and stars on it.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. there is a new place in my hood that is not traditional New York style but is really really good. It is calle Krunch - it is on 2nd Avenue btween 51st and 52nd. Try the pollo d'alba, the bianchi, and the salsiccia.

                                                            1. In Chelsea,
                                                              Crispy Pan Pizza - 17th/7th
                                                              is very good...

                                                              1. Time Out this week is all about Pizza....

                                                                1. i love the plain slice at pizzaninni on st marks and 2nd.

                                                                  1. I second ... Two Boots, Lower East Side. Great toppings and a very tasty granular crust.

                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                    1. re: chalkman

                                                                      I like Two Boots a lot, but it's stretching the definition of "pizza" imo. BTW, I think that's cornstarch you're tasting in the crust...

                                                                      1. re: a_and_w

                                                                        I believe that's cornmeal flour, not cornstarch. But whatever it is, it imparts a great, unique flavor to the crust IMO. However, many people think it's total sacrilege. (Also, the slight spiciness to the sauce turns off a lot of people too.) To each their own... clearly there are enough Two Boots partisans like me, b/c there's never a shortage of customers.

                                                                        I haven't tried a ton of diff. places but I agree with the poster named Thievery that Pomodoro (spring & mulberry) is good. I'll have to try DeMarco's next.

                                                                    2. New York Pizza Suprema, on 8th and 31st, for classic slice-shop style, NON-wood/coal/brick/gourmet/etc, pizza. Dismal location adds to the experience. It's what you're looking for.

                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                      1. re: SunnysideUp

                                                                        Dissent. I didn't like this slice at all (but I can't remember why...sorry).

                                                                      2. OOPS...I see now that Vinnie's is gone.

                                                                        1. if you want the cheese drip with the extra cheese, I'd recommend maffei's, its on west 22nd street and 6th avenue. their slice is definitely sloppy but they have hot sauce there and you definitely need to do the pizza-fold-lean in order to not get oil on your shoes when you eat it standing up. it's not a classy slice and in fact, their grandma, for the same price, is a great slice of pizza, but I'd check it out. it's a humble place, family-owned and very nice people there.

                                                                          as for joe's, I've had two burnt slices there before on separate occasions and that totally turned me off to it. but look into this week's timeout, as rachael333 mentioned, I think they did all the work for you:


                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                          1. re: bigjeff

                                                                            If you like the grandma slice at Maffei, check out the version at Rocco's on 7th Ave at 20th St. Quite similar with an even more flavorful sauce, imo.

                                                                          2. Frank's on 23rd near Lex.

                                                                            1. Best slice in Manhattan: Pizza 33 (margharita slice)

                                                                              Most overrated: Two boots (not even pizza, really).

                                                                              1. the slices at Pizza 33 on 23rd at 8th are deeeelicious!

                                                                                1. Chompchomp - glad you liked it!
                                                                                  Didn't know there was another one at 23rd and 8th.