HOME > Chowhound > Great Lakes >


Buddy's Pizza - Detroit?

What kind of place is Buddy's Pizza? I've got family coming up from the Chicago area in July to see a ballgame at Comerica Park. Pizza's always an easy dinner for us and I keep hearing Buddy's is THE place for Detroit pizza. My brother has a 1 year old that will be with us...would it be an appropriate place for a mid afternoon dinner (4 o'clock or so).

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Buddy's is very much a family-type atmosphere. At least, the ones I've been to are.
    I do prefer Pizzapapalis, though.

    3420 E Jefferson Ave, Detroit, MI 48207

    1. Its the best pizza in Michigan. Some people may disagree, but I think it rivals anything in Chicago (i.e. Gino's etc...)....The original location is in a slightly sketchy neighborhood but the ambiance can't be beat. Try the one on Northwestern Highway.

      1. For great pizza a 2-min. drive from the ballpark, try Supino's in Eastern Market.


        It's NY-style pizza, though, not Detroit-style.

        1 Reply
        1. The Buddy's pizza restaurants I've been in have all been family-friendly, kid-appropriate environments. I don't find their pizza impressive, and I doubt it would impress people from Chicago. It's not inedible, I just think there's better pizza out there. I'm not sure what else is close to Comerica, though, and I'm not familiar with their location there. When I go there, I always order something that's not pizza. I think a lot of the other things on their menu are great. Their salads, soups and sandwiches are good, and all of their soups and dressings are house made.

          1. I like Buddy's, and yes, it's family-appropriate, but Loui's in Hazel Park beats Buddy's by a mile, and it, too, is family-appropriate.

            The trade-off, though, is that there's only one location for Loui's, and Buddy's has several locations. Still totally worth it to go to Loui's, though.

            1. Buddy's is my favorite! I'm usually an everything pizza, but at Buddy's my favorite is pepperoni and cheese. Definitely family friendly. When our friends come back home for a visit, they always have to make a trip to Buddy's. Buddy's has a number of locations. I think the original Buddy's on Conant also has some kind of bowling. Here's a link to their discount coupon site: http://www.buddyspizza.com/discounts.htm

              1. If you have people coming from Chicago and your going to be right down town then I agree with Fibber McGee. Pizzapapalis would be a far better choice. Not only do you get a taste of Greektown but the pie is a lot better and it's only blocks away. It's not that Buddy's is bad but don't expect those from Chicago to be impressed.


                15 Replies
                1. re: Fritter

                  Yeah, but Fritter, they're two totally, completely *different* types of pizza. Buddy's/Loui's would be Detroit style, and Pizzapapalis would be Chicago style. If Chicago style is what is *desired*, then I think the OP would have asked for that. I'm under the impression that they're looking for the best Detroit style pizza around.

                  Or am I confusing things?

                  1. re: boagman

                    I agree with Boagman. If you want to treat your Chicago friends to Detroit style pizza...Buddy's is perfect. I have friends from Chicago joining me for the Cubs/Tigers interleague series later this month and plan to take them to Buddy's for pizza and Lafeyette Coney (sorry I know i mispelled it) Island for hotdogs...both are completely different from the Chicago versions and I think will be a real treat. My dad took me to one of the above before all Tiger games...tradition!

                    1. re: boagman

                      "am I confusing things?"

                      That might be a possability. Lets remember that not every one from Chi-town agrees that all Chicago style pie is "stuffed". There is a real debate between stuffed and deep dish in Chicago. I can't say I see "Detroit" pizza as any distinct style. It's just a square deep dish pizza. A lot of people would say that *IS* Chicago style with a slight twist. If the OP is willing to drive further then I agree with your suggestion of Loui's over Buddy's.

                      1. re: Fritter

                        Just a note on this: if you do go to Pizza Papalis (which I agree is pretty good), their location is wrong in the Chowhound database linked above. The one on E. Jefferson is a branch. What you want is the one at 553 Monroe in Greektown.

                        1. re: Jim M

                          That's my bad, Jim. The Monroe location does show up in Chowhound, I just linked to the Jefferson one and not the Greektown location, as it was the first one that came up. Thanks for providing the address.

                        2. re: Fritter

                          Of no consequence...having lived in Chicago for 20+ and Detroit 20+ I would say taking out of town guests to a place that is typical of the unique options each city offers is better than taking them to something they can get at home on any corner.

                          1. re: Tripper

                            There are some fun and authentic Detroit experiences. IMO Greek town is one of them which is why I frequently make suggestions there. Plus it's close to the ball park. Nikki's serves "Detroit" style pizza as well so there is more than one pizza option in Greek town.
                            As far as being unique I don't think I've ever seen an area including Chicago that doesn't have a square deep dish pie. You can probably thank Little Sleazers for that in the same way you can thank Uno for "representing" Chicago.

                            1. re: Fritter

                              good call. nikki's is in the same vein as buddy's with the twist that they use greek sausage on their pizza and close to comerica park.

                              there is a new pizza place on washington blvd: taste pizza bar. i have not been yet, but have heard good things and read good reviews. i fear that the second floor location on deserted washington blvd may make it tough for this place to survive no matter how well they make a pizza.

                              1. re: xman887

                                I've heard good things about Taste as well and have been wanting to go there, but can never find the time when I'm in town...

                                  1. re: Fritter

                                    Have not. Haven't heard of that one until this thread.

                                    1. re: Mid Michigan Dining

                                      Ooh... if you can make it to the eastside suburbs, I would go to Cloverleaf. This is the "original" original - that is, the original owner of Buddy's sold the chain and opened Cloverleaf. I have always gone to the Eastpointe location on Gratiot, but curiously it doesn't show up on their website. Just St. Clair Shores and Clinton Twp. ... Anyway, if you're looking to stick close to Comerica Park, Buddy's is a good choice for Detroit deep dish. But Cloverleaf is better. : )

                                      1. re: tokyo

                                        Wow, Cloverleaf is new to me too, and our family followed Loui from Buddy's to Shield's to Loui's. But we lived in the northwest suburbs; Loui's is about as far east in the suburbs as we ever got.

                                        The Cloverleaf web site is just for their take out, not for the sit down restaurant. If I visit on my next trip I won't want the take out, so I'm adding the place link for future reference - and to the original Buddy's as well.


                                        Cloverleaf Bar & Restaurant
                                        24443 Gratiot Ave, Eastpointe, MI 48021

                                        Buddy's Pizza
                                        17125 Conant St, Detroit, MI 48212

                          2. re: Fritter

                            Must say, with all due respect, there IS a Detroit style of pizza, and it's to be found at Loui's, Buddy's, and apparently (this is new to me) Cloverleaf. I live in New York, and believe me, there's nothing like Detroit pizza anywhere out here. The Chicago pizza I've had is entirely different too. I've been eating at Loui's since it opened, Shields before that....looking forward to trying Cloverleaf. Oh, the Buddy's on Northwestern serves CRUSTless pizza, which sounds sacrilegious, I know (since the crust is the best part of a Detroit pie), but it's great for my mom, who can't eat wheat....

                        3. Buddy's pizza is good. You can do better, but you'll have to drive. Loui's or
                          Crust are my favs.

                          1. Thanks for all the replies.

                            Like some of you have figured out, I'm looking for a uniquely Detroit dining experience. I have eaten at Pizza Papalis (the Southfield location) and love the pizza. I also grew up near Chicago, so I know my Chicago style pizza. Pizza Papalis is pretty close to Giordano's which my family isn't a huge fan of although that's the Chicago-style I prefer ...my family actually doesn't like what most of you think of as "Chicago-Style" They prefer something that's pretty much only popular on the south side of Chicago which is the cracker thin, well-done style. Buddy's to me looks like something in between....which is more their style than the stuffed pie's.

                            I'm planning on the original Buddy's location. The neighborhood doesn't bother me if we're going in the middle of the afternoon....and we'll be coming from Lansing, so it won't be too far out of the way. I saw pictures of the outside of the building and I couldn't tell if it was a bar that serves pizza or a pizza joint which is why I asked.

                            6 Replies
                            1. re: Mid Michigan Dining

                              Here's an informal history of the development of "Detroit-Style" pizza first published in the Free Press recently.


                              1. re: RedTop

                                great article. having grown up on the east side, i am partial to cloverleaf. i knew the story about gus selling buddy's but being allowed to open cloverleaf and i knew that louis started at buddy's, but i did not know that he was the owner's nephew or that he did a stint at shield's.

                                1. re: RedTop

                                  We stopped at the Cloverleaf on Garfield in Clinton Township last night for carry out and picked up a large Special Deep dish. It may have been THE best Detroit style pie I've ever had.


                                2. re: Mid Michigan Dining

                                  If before you go you decide you want another Buddy's, the Livonia location is on Plymouth Rd, which is only 1 mile south of I-96 (Farmington Rd exit).

                                  1. re: chowchowbrowncow

                                    That location has the worlds smallest men's bathroom stall if I remember correctly. I think I had to have my knees all the way up to my chin, shoulders twisted and arms above my head to fit in the stall.

                                  2. re: Mid Michigan Dining

                                    The original Buddy's location is the mothership for Detroit square pizza - great choice!

                                    This is something you just can't get anywhere else. It's good to see in the Free Press article that some folks may want to change that. If anybody wants to open up a Detroit-style square pizza place in the San Francisco Bay area, let me know!


                                  3. Just wanted to say thanks to the thread participants for some fun memories. My grandparents lived in the Detroit area until they died five years ago and they would take my cousins and me to Buddy's whenever we were in town.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: sweetpig

                                      Proof positive about the family atmosphere.

                                    2. ate at Buddy's over the weekend. Loved it! Very much reminded me of Lou Malnati's in Chicago. Neighborhood was kinda scary, but the food was worth it. Thank you all for you help!