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Jun 4, 2009 10:37 AM

Favorite Rays Pizza

I've had good Rays (notably World Famous Rays at 2am, sausage and pepperoni) and bad Ray's (original rays on lex in the UES).

Any Ray's suggestions/favorites?

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  1. I've never had a good Ray's.

    1. I thought ray's was like a chain....Like Sbarro's....I always stayed away for the reason.

      4 Replies
      1. re: notsochubbychubette

        Well, they are all probably banking on the name of Rays, but they are not a chain like sbarros. I believe they are all independently owned, and although some are similar, some have more integrity of their pies.

        1. re: notsochubbychubette

          I believe what is called Famous Original Ray's is a mini chain with several branches in Manhattan. There is Ray Bari which has a couple branches. Famous Ray's on 11th seems to be the only one, and used to be highly regarded by some before the original owners sold it in the late 70's. There is also a place called Original Ray's on the UES. Ray's (Prince St. in Nolita) claims to be the first pizza place in NYC to use the name. There is also one place on St. Mark's and 3rd Ave. called Rays (not sure if it is related to the other Ray's). Most of the Ray's share a penchant for a super cheesy slice. However Ray's in Prince St. serves a more standard NYC slice (rather crisp crust and not so cheese laden) and I suppose it would be my choice of the "Ray's" if I had to choose.

          Not one big chain, but several chainlets and separately owned individual shops all using some variation on the name "Ray".

          There may have been more Ray's chainlets and branches at one time. I think many have closed.

          In any event, you probably aren't missing much if you stay away.

          1. re: boccalupo

            haven't been in a couple years, but 11th st / 6th ave rays (i'm guessing that's famous) was the one i preferred; i'd had at a few, wasn't impressed until that one.

            1. re: bob gaj

              Yes. That is Famous Ray's on 11th Street and 6th Ave.. At one time people lined up out the door to get a slice there (like you see now at Artichoke). Which meant at least it was hot and fresh.

              It has been ages since I've been there though.

              BTW - A correction on my list above. I double checked, and the place I thought was just called "Original Rays" on UES is really part of the Famous Original Ray's chainlet.

        2. 82nd and Columbus. Great "Rays." And very good, period.

          2 Replies
          1. re: NAtiveNewYorker

            Wasn't there a:
            Famous Original Ray's,
            Ray's Famous Original,
            Original Famous Ray's,
            Ray's Original Famous,
            Original Ray's Famous,
            Famous Ray's Original?

            1. re: Stuartmc910

              And for at least 25 years there has been a «Not Ray's» in Brooklyn (Fort Greene)

              Not Ray's Pizza
              690 Fulton St, Brooklyn, NY 11217

          2. The Ray's on 6th and 11th is still great as long as you stick to a plain slice. Chewy crust, slightly sweet sauce, lots of cheese. Everything else there sits for a while and is awful.