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WHO HAS THE BEST PIZZA IN L.A. AND WHY?

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My all time favorite is Orso's pizza, because the sauce is savory and not overpowering, the crust is thin and the toppings are evenly proportioned. Great pizza. Berri's Pizza comes in 2nd, but I would like other suggestions that I am sure are out there. I love pizza!

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  1. As a Valley-ite, I like D'Amore's Pizza Connection and Joe Peeps. D'Amore's dough tastes good -- they say its the water he imports from Boston -- I don't know if that's it, but he makes great pies. Joe Peeps has a crust that is not too thick and not too thin (in between NY and Chicago), and a list of toppings to beat the band.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Pizzaman

      Wow, there are true pizza lovers out there! Thanks for all the great suggestions:)

    2. There's gotta be one guy who says it and provokes angry responses, so I'll be the guy: Good Pizza in LA is an oxymoron. Stick by the golden rule: Don't eat Pizza in LA or Mexican in NY.

      19 Replies
      1. re: Jon

        it depends on what you mean by "pizza."

        if you're referring to chicago-style, you couldn't be more correct. nothing in LA compares.

        however, if you're referring to NY-style, i will certainly dispute that.

        central LA: vito's (please reopen!)
        eastside: casa bianca
        westside: abbot's pizza (love that poppyseed!)

        1. re: smssms

          Stop!!!!! Some things are just sacred. There simply can not be poppy seeds on anything that even faintly resembles a NYC-style pizza! It's almost sacrilege - lol. Even though I LOVVVVVVE NYC pizza, I'm not one of those who refuses to eat pizza in L.A. I've even had a few good slices here.

          That said, I'm going to check out Abbot Pizza tonight based on suggestions on this board and from other friends. I'll give you my report tomorrow as a died-in-the-wool NYC pizza-eating-gal.

          1. re: Erica

            i wouldn't call abbot's pizza a clone of the NY-style. i'd say it's more of a socal twist on the thin crust style.

            in case you don't know, there's not much seating at abbot's pizza - mainly stools along the wall or a few chairs outside. so be prepared to order takeout.

            enjoy your pie! can't wait for your report!

            1. re: smssms

              Deep sigh (smile). First let me say that I will go back to Abbot's. Next (second deeper sigh), you're right, this is NOT NY-style pizza.

              I ate a slice of cheese pizza while waiting for my Wild Mushroom to go. I thought the problem was that the cheese pizza had been sitting out for a while. However, on both, the crust was really tough and overcooked. However, the sauce was tasty and they offer really nice toppings.

              The thing with NYC pizza is that the sauce and cheese are not really distinct from each other. They meld together in a lovely, gooey, kinda greasy conglomeration - ECSTASY! Also, the crust on great NYC pizza is an art form itself. I don't know how they manage to make the bottom crusty but the part right under the sauce layer is soft and a little mushy - Ayiyiyi, I'm gonna faint - lol.

              When I go back, I think we'll pick up a couple of beers or bring a bottle of 2 Buck Chuck, eat in and wait for whatever comes fresh out of the oven. That should enhance the flavor and reduce the crust problem.

              Until then, I'll keep looking for the best L.A. slice. But thanks fellow hounds for the referral.

              1. re: Erica

                Try Damiano on Fairfax across from Canters. Very (NYC)West Village pizza by the slice. Fresh ingredients. And that "soft spot" that you so fondly recall is there. I like it cause it's only 10 minutes away. They're pokey, so I call in my slices from the car as I leave the house, only have to wait a minute or 2 when I get there. You can always get a street spot between 7 & 11 pm. Oh, they serve till 5 am.

                1. re: ciao ny

                  I had Damianos once and found it too greasy. Mulberry St is the closest I have found to the regular slices I would get in nyc. Of course nothing tops Grimaldis. Did you also notice when their pies come out the slices of mozzarella are still semi solid? Man oh man!

          2. re: smssms

            casa bianca--never been able to get in

            vitos--not open as you point out.

            abbotts--you're joking, right? no offense

            1. re: Jon

              i take no offense, jon. my opinion is that of a pizza lover who has lived on both coasts, not to mention chicago.

              casa bianca - put your name in the waiting list, walk over the "the chalet" for a drink or two, and come back and enjoy your pie with a nice buzz.

              vito's - c'mon and hurry it up!

              abbot's - i will certainly not contend that it is an duplicate of a NY pie. it's instead a bohemian/venice take on the traditional. there's only 1 pizza place that i like better - just under the brooklyn bridge on the brooklyn side. what's the name of that place?

                1. re: Erik M.

                  thanks. that place...sure brings back memories.

                  if only grimaldi's had a left coast branch.

                  1. re: smssms

                    Believe it or not, Grimaldi's has opened a store in Phoenix (of all the god-forsaken places!)... coal oven and all.

                    Mr. Taster

                    1. re: Mr. Taster

                      Has that been verified? If it's true I'll be off to phoenix once a week. It's a world gone mad.

                      1. re: Jon

                        Yeah, I ate there during baseball spring training. Really good pizza, a little expensive but worth it.

                        1. re: Jon

                          Indeed it is verified. It's a totally baffling concept. I suppose some of the Grimaldi family decided to retire in Phoenix and bring the family business with them. I can't imagine any other connection.

                          Mr. Taster

                          Link: http://www.patsygrimaldis.com/

                        2. re: Mr. Taster

                          And a little OT, but Pizzeria Bianco (with it's James Beard Award) is in Phoenix and started in the Bronx.

                    2. re: smssms

                      You're thinking of of fabulous Patsy Grimaldi's.

                2. re: Jon

                  As we all know, there are many east coast transplants here in So. Cal and you may be one of them, I am. I think we know what good pizza is from all the mom and pop pizza shops we grew up around. There weren't any chains way back when. California does has some decent sole proprietorships here, but many are your fancy goat cheese and duck droppings or pickled blackberries and rapini offerings on a pizza bianco and cracker-like crust from famous and not so famous chefs, not to mention any names like Mario Batali, Susan Feniger, and dear old Wolfgang. Anyway, what do Californians have to compare pizza places to? Nothing. They just go here and there and form their own opinions. There's a pizza for everyone, but the trick is finding yours. But don't call that fat savory cake from Chicago, a pizza. It's not, it's a cake with pizza-like ingredients, assembled backwards.

                  BTW -There is a large Hispanic community in NYC, and the north east in general, so your taco rule is false. Plenty of good tacos up there.

                    1. re: TarsTarkus

                      We have La Barbara's , Barones and the original Spago

                  1. Ciccero's on La Cienega between Cashio and 18th street. I'm telling you, I've been around some pizza, and this is legit. Great cheese and the crust is perfect. You just gotta try it.

                    1. Casa Bianca in Eagle Rock, hands down. Best flavor, best crust, best toppings, best in show.

                      That said....one of my favorite pizzas is at the Rainbow on Sunset. The rock and roll dive The Rainbow... has one of the best tasting pies in town, no kidding.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Woody

                        You know, I went to Casa Bianca once and was horrified to find grey, canned mushrooms on my mushroom pizza.

                        Mr. Taster

                        1. re: Mr. Taster

                          agree that canned mushrooms are a real turn-off - capri in eagle rock also used these on their pizza, which was rather disappointing.

                      2. b
                        blackbookali

                        where is orso's and berri's? are they better than Casa Bianca? havent tried but capri in eagle rock is rumored to be quite good.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: blackbookali

                          Orso is a restaurant on 3rd near Cedars Sinai Hospital with one of the nicest al fresco patios in town.

                        2. Cannot imagine going to Orso for pizza when so many other items on the menu have so much more allure.
                          Mulberry Street in Bev. Hls and Encino does a great job with pizza, and makes no pretenses beyond pizza, and they have the business to support that contention.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: carter
                            b
                            brocklanders

                            The plain cheese pizza at Mulberry is good, but I got a slice with toppings(vegetarian) and it was horrible. Friend got sicilian style and that was horrible as well.
                            I'd stick with the plain cheese, reminded me of Joe's in NY, only not as good.

                            1. re: carter

                              Other items may have more "allure", but pretty much everything I've eaten there has been disappointing, with the exception of their plain cheese pizza. It's just the best!

                              1. re: carter

                                Pizza was the starter, are you kidding??!! They have fantastic food and their patio is to die for...very romantic:)

                              2. Have you tried Antica Pizzeria? There used to be one on 3rd St. near Crescent Heights; that closed, but the Marina Del Rey location is still open.

                                It's the place to go if you want a true ITALIAN (Neapolitan to be precise) pizza - NOT NY-style, or Chicago, Boston, New Haven, or California.

                                1. My favorite pizza is Carmine's in South Pasadena (I believe there is another in Arcadia(?). The crust is perfect, and they put a good amount of toppings. Sauce has fantastic flavor. Get the regular crust cooked "well done". Our waitress says she likes the thin crust "well done" but I can't get past the regular. Had it just last night.

                                  1. The Gruberino is a Vito’s guy, too, but I’m pretty sure that, unlike MacArthur, he ain’t returning.

                                    Downtown, Lamonica’s on 6th nr Grand is the now-favorite -- makes a very NY-like slice. Don’t take home tho, it doesn’t travel well at all.

                                    Westside -- yep, Villa Italia in all its school-cafeteria glory is as good as it gets, tho Johnnie’s in the Marina is sometimes great, but other times blah.

                                    In Silverlake/EP, Palermo is decent.

                                    Finally, found a great-tasting pie at none other than California Pizza Kitchen. Their thin-crust Sicilian (ask for it crispy) is damn good – really.

                                    4 Replies
                                    1. re: Mr Grub

                                      Thin crust sicilian is an oxymoron--but what else would you expect from horrible, horrible CPK?

                                      1. re: Jon

                                        Hahahaha - Thanks Jon. I didn't have the heart left to chime in on the 'thin crust sicilian' thing.

                                        1. re: Jon

                                          FWIW, CPK doesn't imply that this pizza is Sicilian style. It is listed in their thin-crust pizza section, "branding" that particular combination of toppings -- cheese, sausage, capicola, & salami IIRC -- as "Sicilian." & it remains a mighty tasty oasis on their menu.

                                          1. re: Jon

                                            FWIW, you can get any of their pizzas done on an extra thin, crispy, bubbly crust. The veggie on honey wheat is better done that way. I don't mind the Margarita either.

                                        2. Great? no, BUT
                                          when I'm around the Egyptian in hollywood and I need a quick bite, I just cross the street to the Two Guys or the Famous Guy or whatever it's called now, get a slice on the run and eat it. It's not drive or travel a ways for a pizza kind of place - but meets the sometime craving for a quick pizza slice when you don't have time for a real meal.

                                          1. This ancient pizza discussion just popped up...the only good thing about LA pizza in 2004 was that Antica Pizzeria was still open, i was still living in MDR and eating pizza there every fri or sat nite! otherwise, pizza was truly "to die from."

                                            1. If you cant have La Barbaras, Baronies is my fall back. If you go for alternative, then smoked salmon pizza or duck saussage at Spago is great as it the pork cheek at Sotto. Love clam pizza, but cant find one any more.

                                              27 Replies
                                              1. re: Thor123

                                                Love the smoked salmon on at Spago. Add caviar please. Clam pizza at p Mozza. Comes as pizzette on menu but they will do a bigger one. Not great but good. Love the golden boy clam slices in north beach sf

                                                1. re: Thor123

                                                  wow, Barone's...im at a loss to respond...now Sotto is a different story!

                                                    1. re: BSW6490

                                                      once at Barone's was way too much...too too heavy, greasy...

                                                      1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                        also, the crust was too much like white bread

                                                        1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                          Actually, it is not heavy at all. Try it again and if you dont like it Kevin will pay for it.

                                                          1. re: Thor123

                                                            I'll pass...as westsidegal has noted in the past, i cant waste such calorie splurges on pizza i feel is muy unacceptable...price is not the deciding factor, even if Kevin's paying!

                                                            1. re: Thor123

                                                              Barone's has very thin crust pizza.

                                                              1. re: bringiton

                                                                Not in that picture above lapizzamaven listed..... Maybe they used to...

                                                                1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                  Lance Roberts word is pizza gospel 4 moi! hes tellin it like it is w/ photos to back it up...Barone's not for the faint of heart or those with an elevated palate for pizza...now if you love cheesy, meaty greasy pizza, dive in!

                                                                  1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                    Next time I am at the Stinking Rose I will be sure to buy you a drink.

                                                                    1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                      Yea, I could tell he's got some cred and he lists Sotto as one of his faves, that's why I wondered if Thor had clicked on his name.....being he's a huge fan of Sotto, last I read....

                                                                      1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                        he also mocked Casa Bianca to no end, which means he's a-ok in my book: http://slice.seriouseats.com/archives...

                                                                        too bad he hardly covers LA pizza these days.

                                                          2. re: Thor123

                                                            Well, since Nicky D's in Silverlake closed, they had a good clam pie.... I just make my own now. But I do have a short list of places that had it on their menus, but have not been to any of them yet to try it
                                                            Wildcraft Sourdough
                                                            Miceli's
                                                            And Mozza sometimes has an Ipswich clam pie, but it's small and I'm not in love with their crust, too crispy....

                                                            1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                              Santinos in Sherman Oaks (Woodman) does a clam pie as well.

                                                              1. re: gr8pimpin

                                                                Thank you! I love the fact my little list is growing...!

                                                                1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                  Dirty the list of good stuff u cook is impressive. Ur family is lucky!

                                                                  1. re: jessejames

                                                                    Thank you! My boys love my clam and bacon pie. I love to cook so I guess I was blessed to have two sons who love to eat good food too and are now growing like weeds....

                                                                    1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                      Awesome. I have one little girl. I don't want her to grow up yet! 2 is a perfect age but that will change.

                                                                      1. re: jessejames

                                                                        Hahaha, yea it is a great age. And I know what you mean about growing up...happens way too fast. My oldest will be 13 going on 20 in six weeks..... He turned into a teenager overnight a while back. Scary.

                                                              2. re: Thor123

                                                                Loved La Barbara's but Baronies sucked 40 years ago, hope it is better now. Clam and garlic pizza you can find at Village Pizza down in Larchmont.

                                                                1. re: littlestevie

                                                                  Good to know, I'll add it to my list, thanks.

                                                                  1. re: littlestevie

                                                                    There's now a second branch of Village Pizza near Yucca/Cahuenga as well.

                                                                    1. re: jesstifer

                                                                      Wait what? Really?

                                                                      I recall Village Pizza being a better than average NY style pizza, but when I moved away from there, no drive to drive back. But Yucca/ Chahuenga... Hmm...

                                                                2. I finally got up to Grimaldi's recently and for me that's the winner. I had a small sausage and basil pizza and it was pretty damn near perfect.

                                                                  14 Replies
                                                                  1. re: Eater15

                                                                    I did too, and I was pleasantly surprised. I like the thin crust, a lot like east coast pizza, but not that cracker thin stuff like Mozza does on their pizzette's, I like some dough and chew. Mine was a meatball, bacon & mushroom. I appreciated the fresh mozz on it. And I was also pleasantly surprised by the sauce, thought it was perfectly balanced. I don't know what others were talking about when describing it as too sweet, I could not detect any sugar at all, it was slightly acidic and very good.

                                                                    1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                      So good. My go to spot in South Bay or near lax

                                                                    2. re: Eater15

                                                                      I love olio but grimaldis is the one I crave. The pepperoni there is small calibre and delish. I add garlic too.

                                                                      1. re: Eater15

                                                                        I went last week -- again! I don't get the complaints about sweet sauce either. Got a pepperoni and mushroom to go, drove to the beach, put the box on the hood of the car and GF and I ate pizza and watched the sun set. Pizza held up well, too!

                                                                        1. re: gr8pimpin

                                                                          Only recall one outspoken person insisting sugar in sauce and overly sweet. Not my experience. Great pie. I like your style pimpmaster. I'd like to see one of those goupy flimsy small expensive certified bullshit pies go for a ride and be served up your style on the car hood. It wouldn't be pretty

                                                                          1. re: jessejames

                                                                            Thanks, ha ha. It's all in the crust, no?

                                                                            My only real complaint about Grimaldis is that it's a pizzeria dressed up like a ristorante and getting a to-go is a production.

                                                                            1. re: gr8pimpin

                                                                              Nice balanced pie I think. Crust sauce cheese roni. Fair enough. I heard the canolis good too. Next time for me

                                                                              1. re: jessejames

                                                                                Didn't try a cannoli, but the strawberry cheesecake was fantastic! Then again, I can't usually eat that stuff, and just had a few bites, as I would be in trouble if I ate the whole thing, so my opinion is a bit skewed.....but it was the bomb...

                                                                                1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                                  I gotta try that. Just had a coconut cheesecake in Hawaii called "the bomb" with a guava middle. That id like to see in la!

                                                                                  1. re: jessejames

                                                                                    You can find that guava cheesecake at Kings Hawaiian in Torrance on PCH.

                                                                              2. re: gr8pimpin

                                                                                Gotta agree with ya there.... Kept wondering why they didn't offer sandwiches and steaks.... Wicked corporate looking. But that's fine...

                                                                                1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                  Westsidegal you are not alone. I was extremely disappointed by Grimaldi's too.

                                                                                  1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                    Enjoy what you like. I think our tastes and opinions are not similar but it's a big city and something for everyone.

                                                                              1. re: wienermobile

                                                                                You know I'm not a huge fan expensive and crust chewy but had one recently and nice and cheesy good balance. Not shabby for weho

                                                                                1. re: jessejames

                                                                                  Vito's can def produce a damn good pizza...havent had a fresh pie made in a while, but the reheated slices are generally quite good

                                                                                2. re: wienermobile

                                                                                  Went back to Vito's recently. I really love the thin crust offering there, better than the one at Grimaldi's, tho the Grimaldi's on Eastern Ave. in Las Vegas is a little better. I also prefer Vito's to Joe's.

                                                                                  1. re: Ogawak

                                                                                    Can't wait to try Grimaldi's in Vegas next week....

                                                                                    1. re: Ogawak

                                                                                      I agree, the Eastern Ave location is significantly better than all of the locations and I find identical to the Brooklyn location.

                                                                                    2. re: wienermobile

                                                                                      Wow, wienermobile. I saw your pic and immediately had homesickness pangs. For a second I thought I was actually looking at a slice from a family-run pizzeria in central New Jersey. It just looks so.... perfect. The only thing that's missing from the pic are the oregano, garlic powder and red pepper flake shakers (and a Ms. Pac Man machine in the background.)

                                                                                      Mr Taster

                                                                                      1. re: wienermobile

                                                                                        Another HUGE FAN of Vito's...and that's coming from a NY'er who just moved to LA.

                                                                                      2. If one wants to factor in *price* (and you may not want to and that's ok, but I lost all my money in that Mt Cox debacle and so sometimes price is important), then it's hard to beat a Costco slice.

                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                          The ambiance is lacking, but on price you are correct.

                                                                                          1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                            "...but I lost all my money in that Mt Cox debacle..."

                                                                                            In the "imperfect" past tense you "bit" the big one with those virtual coins. Much safer and more delicious to have "bitten" the big pizza...although virtual pizza just doesn't do it for me.

                                                                                            1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                              Mt.Gox = Magic The Gathering Online Xchange

                                                                                              Joe's (Santa Monica) > Vito's

                                                                                              1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                tough break on mtgox

                                                                                                costco slices are only good there (aka dine-in) with a heavy dose of nostalgia. their take n bake is like, a different animal (and not in a good way)

                                                                                              2. In the "most eclectic" pie category the award goes to Pizza of Venice.

                                                                                                http://www.pizzaofvenice.com/

                                                                                                10 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: wienermobile

                                                                                                    Amateur.

                                                                                                    Mr. Pizza can't even carry Pizza & Chicken Love Letter's broken pizza stone, much less compare to Pizza of Venice.

                                                                                                    1. re: wienermobile

                                                                                                      Damiano's Mr. Pizza closed some time ago. Can't say I miss it.

                                                                                                      1. re: jesstifer

                                                                                                        But it was a great place to get a pie delivered at 4:00am!!!

                                                                                                        1. re: gr8pimpin

                                                                                                          Where do u get ur late nite pies now

                                                                                                          1. re: jessejames

                                                                                                            Nowhere... too old to eat late night, lol... I'm in bed too early now :-) I guess I would go to Joe's Pizza in SM on Broadway or Colorado --- they deliver until 3:00am on Fri-Sat.

                                                                                                      1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                        Shitty website with a hard to read menu....

                                                                                                        1. re: foodiejb

                                                                                                          I just bit my tongue... That looks good!!

                                                                                                                  1. re: jessejames

                                                                                                                    definitely id have to be buzzed to eat that!

                                                                                                                    1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                                                                      http://slice.seriouseats.com/archives...

                                                                                                                      heres a link to a great review of Barone's with photos illustrating why any serious pizza lover, as opposed to someone who will be satisfied by anything with a lot of salty meat,cheese and sauce!

                                                                                                                      1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                                                                        Man those photos of Barone's made my heart sink. Where have you gone Hoppe's? We miss you.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Ernie

                                                                                                                      I think Tony was referring to Petrillo's in San Gabriel, not Barone's.

                                                                                                                  1. re: A5 KOBE

                                                                                                                    Yep. Petrillo's doesn't offer fresh mushrooms but their canned mushrooms are still very flavorful. Petrillo's has awesome pizza!

                                                                                                                    1. re: foodiejb

                                                                                                                      canned mushrooms are still very flavorful.
                                                                                                                      ---
                                                                                                                      flavorful like canned mushrooms.

                                                                                                                      And it's awesome like red sauce italian food from the 70s. Or Little Caesar.

                                                                                                                      Petrillo still exists because the 30% non-Asians in San Gabriel sometimes needs to eat out. Ever notice every Shakey's in SGV is packed? Same reason.

                                                                                                                      1. re: TonyC

                                                                                                                        Quite hilarious comparing Petrillo's to Little Caesar or Shakeys. Keep bringing the laughter - hahaha!

                                                                                                                        1. re: TonyC

                                                                                                                          No, it exists because they have been making great pizza for over 50 years, and despite your attempt to make this a racial thing, I have seen plenty of Asians dining there over the years

                                                                                                                          1. re: Ernie

                                                                                                                            Vince's spaghetti has been around 70 years, but it still sucks every time. Longevity does not equate to much if that is the case.

                                                                                                                            1. re: A5 KOBE

                                                                                                                              What does Vince's spaghetti have to do with Petrillo's pizza other than a straw man approach?

                                                                                                                            2. re: Ernie

                                                                                                                              personally, i see nothing tasty in that pizza foto...if im in that area and want pizza id go to Bollini's!

                                                                                                                              1. re: Ernie

                                                                                                                                Ditto to Shakey's ('54; Asians sometimes seen at Alham/MPK branches).

                                                                                                                                Keep believing ethnicity has nothing to do with dining preferences in WSGV; keep eating Shakas?

                                                                                                                                1. re: TonyC

                                                                                                                                  I don't know what you are talking about, I eat all types of Asian and non-Asian food in the SGV. Not sure why you are so hung up on race

                                                                                                                                1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                                                                                  Petrillos Pizza is awesome! I drove all the way to San Gabriel and picked up seven of their large pizzas for my kid's birthday party on the Westside. I picked up several pizzas beyond what the kids would eat because I knew the parents would want some. The parents devoured the pizzas and everyone was asking for directions how to get there. I've been to alot of kids birthday parties and have never seen a reaction like that to any other pizza.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: bringiton

                                                                                                                                    No doubt Petrillo's is awesome! Whenever I bring Petrillo's pizza to work for special celebrations or potlucks, it's the first thing that gets devoured!

                                                                                                                          2. re: foodiejb

                                                                                                                            Count me in as a fan since we're choosing sides.

                                                                                                                            1. re: JAB

                                                                                                                              Nothing wrong with being a fan of gloppy canned mushroom pizza. :)

                                                                                                                                1. re: A5 KOBE

                                                                                                                                  "Nothing wrong with being a fan of gloppy canned mushroom pizza"
                                                                                                                                  And spam pizza too...

                                                                                                                                  1. re: A5 KOBE

                                                                                                                                    Dude, don't comment until you've tried it. There is nothing gloppy about it.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: bringiton

                                                                                                                                      You're right. Petrillo's pizza is the pinnacle of culinary finesse. What was I thinking?

                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                      1. re: A5 KOBE

                                                                                                                                        LOL

                                                                                                                                        Mr Taster
                                                                                                                                        (who uses his silly internet acronyms sparingly, but felt this one was entirely justified.)

                                                                                                                                1. re: wienermobile

                                                                                                                                  That crust game.

                                                                                                                                  Alternatively, one can drive 10 miles to eat Petrillo's. Says no one ever.

                                                                                                                                  #300 posts. Bring it.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: TonyC

                                                                                                                                    Now, we're comparing Petrillo's to Stella Barra and the like?

                                                                                                                                    1. re: JAB

                                                                                                                                      Not at all. Just listing my favorite pizzas.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: wienermobile

                                                                                                                                        Was in reply to TonyC. I understand where you're coming from.

                                                                                                                                      2. re: JAB

                                                                                                                                        You're right, that's just really not fair. One's highly edible, the other happens to be as old as Shakey's.

                                                                                                                                        How comparing Petrillo's to DeSano? Still not fair? Can I toss in an upskirt?

                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                        1. re: TonyC

                                                                                                                                          Nope, still not fair. It's throwback, old school not new school. That part is understood. Whether one enjoys it or not is a matter of personal preference. Besides Westside Gal, I'm Settebello's biggest Pimp here but, there's room on my table for Petrillo's when the mood strikes.

                                                                                                                                    2. re: wienermobile

                                                                                                                                      Gotta say, I like the crust at Grimaldi's better, SB is just a touch too sweet for me.... And I found G's to be more generous with the toppings. I mean seriously, that photo looks awful skimpy on the sausage.....

                                                                                                                                      1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                                                                                        I'll 2nd that comment! way skimpy on the sausage...if im ever in there again(not likely b'c of noise and parking factor) id order extra sauseeeege!

                                                                                                                                      2. re: wienermobile

                                                                                                                                        The wait at SB is rediculous. I went there at 10:30 p.m. on a Saturday and the wait was 1.5 hours for a table.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: bringiton

                                                                                                                                          bringiton, please tell us you didnt stay!

                                                                                                                                        2. re: wienermobile

                                                                                                                                          Wait, I remembered this place being called "Stella ROSSA" and I remember really liking it a lot. Am I losing my mind? Is it the same place but different name? Or different? Or am I just nuts and it was never called rossa??

                                                                                                                                          1. re: Eater15

                                                                                                                                            No it's the same Place but they changed the named back about a year ago, when they opened a Hollywood store also.

                                                                                                                                        3. …and don't forget Milo & Olive.

                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                          8 Replies
                                                                                                                                          1. re: wienermobile

                                                                                                                                            You are killing me with that picture! Ow!

                                                                                                                                            1. re: happybaker

                                                                                                                                              To me it's like settebello but not as bad. All the stuff in the middle where you get one goupy bite and rest all crust.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: jessejames

                                                                                                                                                Not mine. It was near perfection.

                                                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                                1. re: A5 KOBE

                                                                                                                                                  Looks better than my experience I admit. Bon appetite

                                                                                                                                                1. re: mc michael

                                                                                                                                                  That looks like the butternut squash & egg pizza to me...but I could be wrong (g)

                                                                                                                                              2. I went to Grimaldi's opening week and it just didn't do it for me..but I went back tonight and used the secret words "EXTRA CRISPY' and I got one great tasty pie….

                                                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                                40 Replies
                                                                                                                                                  1. re: jessejames

                                                                                                                                                    i do really dig Grimaldi's here in LA ...fairly consistent and the best if not the only really NY style pizza here but this pie i had from their Vegas branch several years ago was considerably better!

                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                    1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                                                                                                      I agree, the Eastern branch specifically makes great pies. Funny story, I ordered the meatball at the Eastern branch and the waiter claimed that they get their meatball flown from NY. Then a month later I visit the Brooklyn location and order a meatball and onion and to my surprise they don't even serve meatball. LOL

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                                                                                                        Fascinating! I've had the LV pies repeatedly, and they've been good every time. Sad about the Southbay sitch.

                                                                                                                                                        Thanks for the comparo. BTW, SkyHighGluten is actually opening a pie shop, yes?

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: TonyC

                                                                                                                                                          Nothing sad about it. Have you tried it tony?

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: jessejames

                                                                                                                                                            Not yet. Is Manhattan Beach on the way to Vegas? I forget.

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: TonyC

                                                                                                                                                            I'll be anxious to compare this weekend, while the South Bay pie is still fresh in my mind....

                                                                                                                                                      2. re: wienermobile

                                                                                                                                                        "Extra Crispy" sometimes works for the In-N-Out fries, too...

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: A5 KOBE

                                                                                                                                                              I beg to differ. In 'n' Out fries are truly--and I've eaten them many times--consistently the worst fries in California, if not the world.

                                                                                                                                                              I do not exaggerate.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: jesstifer

                                                                                                                                                                I'm no fan of Five Guys, and I love In-N-Out burgers for what they are- a fine fast food burger and a great value. However, I can't pretend not to see the 800 lb. gorilla that is In-N-Out's fries. (I think this is why I shouldn't be a parent-- if I had a dumb and/or ugly kid, I just don't think I'd be able to pretend they were brilliant and beautiful.)

                                                                                                                                                                There's some major "emperor's new clothes" syndrome going on with those fries. "Well done" makes them less terrible, but it doesn't make them good.

                                                                                                                                                                There, I said it. I will still love In-N-Out Burger forever, just like I would love my ugly and/or dumb kid. But since it's my choice, I just prefer not to order the fries (and/or have a kid).

                                                                                                                                                                Mr Taster

                                                                                                                                                            2. re: jesstifer

                                                                                                                                                              But the burgers are good. I usually do two burgers. But at least xtra crispy is improvement

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: jessejames

                                                                                                                                                                Wonder what could improve In'n'Out's fries? Obviously, if they double-fried -- blanch then crisp. But that isn't going to happen. Do they need to change the cut? More starch or less starch? Fry at a different temp? Regular fries limp and lifeless. Welldone fries often taste like potato sticks. Is there something great in the middle? Do they not salt them and leave that to the customer?

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: nosh

                                                                                                                                                                  They do salt them…and for the life of me I never understood those animal fries.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: nosh

                                                                                                                                                                    I've found that requesting them light well gives the best results.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: JAB

                                                                                                                                                                      I'm going to try this. Welldone makes them into almost potato-sticks.

                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: nosh

                                                                                                                                                                      Well they purposely use a kennebec potato, likely BECAUSE they can be fried once due to the low water content.

                                                                                                                                                                      I used to dislike them too, but over the years they have grown on me. I like them crunchy like potato sticks, ordering well done. My kid gets cheesy fries.

                                                                                                                                                                      How can they make them better? Sneak them in fresh fried from Mcdonalds.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: gr8pimpin

                                                                                                                                                                        There in lies the problem. Kennebec potatoes stink for fries, many restaurants around town use them. You will never get that great contrast in texture crisp outside/fluffy inside like you can with a russet.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: AAQjr

                                                                                                                                                                          No they don't. And isn't this a thread about pizza? Start another thread if you're all going to endlessly debate in n outs fries, please.

                                                                                                                                                              2. re: wienermobile

                                                                                                                                                                See?! I got slammed for finding Grimaldi's crust too soggy on both visits here.

                                                                                                                                                                Will try extra crispy next time.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                                                                                                                    respectfully disagree about the sauce at grimaldi's being "awsome" in any positive way.
                                                                                                                                                                    found the crust to be good, though.
                                                                                                                                                                    obviously, ymmv

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                                                                                                      Um, that's a teen's phrase..... Not to be taken literally... Kinda like totes ma goats, to mean totally.... Sorry to confuse you....

                                                                                                                                                                      But I did like the sauce and did not find it sweet in the slightest....

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                                                                                                        Maybe something else you ate or drank threw you off, or maybe there was something weird about that particular pizza you at (e.g. the tomatoes they used had an unusually high sugar content or something)

                                                                                                                                                                        But you should really try again, because I honestly don't understand how you can think that sauce was too sweet and apparently neither can anyone else. If you try it again and still find it too sweet, pobrecita, your mileage certainly varies. But I think not giving it another chance might mean you miss out on the best NY pizza (and one of the best pizzas, period) in the city.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Eater15

                                                                                                                                                                          when i took my first bite, i knew it contained added sugar.
                                                                                                                                                                          i had eaten nothing for the 3 hours prior to my arriving at grimaldis and i had water to drink
                                                                                                                                                                          when i first tasted the suger, i asked the server who initially denied it.
                                                                                                                                                                          i asked the server to actually ask the person who cooked the sauce.
                                                                                                                                                                          when he came back from the kitchen, he told me that he had been told that they, indeed, DO add sugar to their sauce.
                                                                                                                                                                          although this is not common practice in NY (i grew up in NYC), it IS a very common sauce practice in NJ. i know this taste well from my travels through NJ (i worked for a newark-based company for 8 years),

                                                                                                                                                                          dunno why a NY based chain would adopt this NJ flavor profile, but it was NOT an accident of tomato-ripeness.

                                                                                                                                                                          it doesn't matter to me if anyone else on the board picked up on the sugar, i'm not spending another cent of my own money in the place unless the two places that i LIKE that sell terrific pizza 5 minutes from where i live were to evaporate.

                                                                                                                                                                          my experience was poor all the way around:
                                                                                                                                                                          service ( upselling. "Are you SURE you don't want a nice glass of wine to go with your pizza?)

                                                                                                                                                                          food (sugar in sauce not appealing to me. perfect way to ruin a good crust)

                                                                                                                                                                          ambiance (huge cavernous, echoing, phony italian-themed chain restaurant)

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                                                                                                            Wsg you've already well staked out your position as a Grimaldi prosecutor and settebello public defender.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: jessejames

                                                                                                                                                                              i'm also a big fan of the Vanguard pie at South End.

                                                                                                                                                                              if the competition were for the pie only, i'd also go to bat for Stella Barra, but the experience as a whole at Stella Barra is unappealing to me even though their pie is plenty appealing. haven't been there for about 8 months or so . . .

                                                                                                                                                                              If we add budget offerings into the competition, i enjoy the cheap thrill of 800 degrees too.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                                                                                                                Big fan of Mario Vollera and South End! gotta go back soon!

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                                                                                                                  I like 800 degrees too incl the soda machine

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: jessejames

                                                                                                                                                                                    I hate 800 degrees ...went 3 times...once decent, the other times gummy crust...and their whole marketing gimmick disgusts me..."have pizza your way" when the Hell did i go into a pizzeria and ask them what pizza i was gonna get...fughddabou! and that assembly line bullshit..puleeeze! if UCLA students like it, good for them!

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                                                                                                                                        lapizzamaven: the 800 degrees margarita pizza is, imho, the very best one can buy at that price level.
                                                                                                                                                                                        i like the cookies at maison du pain, and think the stuff sold at diddy riese is revolting, but still, FOR THE PRICE, the diddy riese stuff can't be faulted.

                                                                                                                                                                                        there is room in my life for cheap thrills, but i don't expect them to be able to compete with the same item being sold at twice the price.

                                                                                                                                                                                        that said, i admit, that i will happily eat 800 degree pizza, but i'd just a soon skip dessert entirely if all that's available is diddy riece. probably that mirrors your feeling about 800 degrees.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                                                                                                                          Westsidegal, considering i remember that you "weigh" quality of the food along with calorie intake, it seems odd that youd patronize 800 degrees to save a few dollars, unless you happened to be in westwood and starving...Also, i dont think there is another margherita pizza made at that price point...i personally just get really turned off by their bullshit marketing, besides not finding their assembly line approach conducive to making a consistently good pie!

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                                                                                                                                            obviously, the 800 degree pie is not a destination pie for me, but given the other westwood choices, i feel their pie is worth the calories when my car is already parked there. (it's either 800 degrees or TLT)
                                                                                                                                                                                            since i don't eat meat nor poultry, westwood doesn't offer much else for me.
                                                                                                                                                                                            the assembly line approach doesn't turn me off at all.

                                                                                                                                                                                            also, i like that i can get a BIG well-constructed salad there.
                                                                                                                                                                                            i really like the build-your-own concept for the salad,

                                                                                                                                                                                            (if i get into the car, and pull out of the broxton lot, then i'm probably going to be heading east to AWASH for ethiopian food followed by a trip to Selam market to get shiro powder. THAT foray always turns out to be a caloric disaster!)

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                                                                                                                              I may have to try the salad at 800 degrees..

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                                                                                                                                                word of warning: it's a build-it-yourself salad. if you don't like that approach, you won't like the salad.
                                                                                                                                                                                                for me, and my calorie counting, they are fine with giving me the dressing on the side, extra vinegar on the side, and lemon on the side.

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: lapizzamaven

                                                                                                                                                                                              While you and I completely disagree on Barones, could not agree more on 800 degrees. To me it is a complete miss and the 3 times (note lapzz) I have been there, the top slid off the 800 degree pie each time. Better than Popa John or Dominos but thats about it for me.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: westsidegal

                                                                                                                                                                                Westsidegal, we don't often interact, because, as I like to say, "Santa Monica?! If I'm traveling that far west I'm going to Hawaii!"

                                                                                                                                                                                But I absolutely agree about Grimaldi's (El Segundo) sauce. I didn't like it. I'm not convinced it has added sugar, but it's woefully under-seasoned, and has none of the acidic, tomatoey bite of the Brooklyn pie.

                                                                                                                                                                          2. Had the lamb sausage pizza at Spago last night. Very good.

                                                                                                                                                                            7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Thor123

                                                                                                                                                                              People still go to Spago and all the reservation stuff and traffic and valet to get pizza?

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: mc michael

                                                                                                                                                                                ... all the reservation stuff and traffic and valet ...
                                                                                                                                                                                ____________

                                                                                                                                                                                Live in LA much?

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                                                                                                  since 1969, dude. what about you?
                                                                                                                                                                                  it's not the hassle, it's the hassle for pizza.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: mc michael

                                                                                                                                                                                    <<the hassle for pizza.>>

                                                                                                                                                                                    gottta admit, that, since my situation changed so that there are two pizzas that i LIKE that are available 5 minutes from my house, i absolutely concur with you mcmichael.

                                                                                                                                                                                    when there were no good nearby pizzas, i felt differently.

                                                                                                                                                                                    vaguely remember something from econ class about scarcity... .

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                                                                                                                      Spago has dishes other than pizza.

                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: mc michael

                                                                                                                                                                                  Yeah when it has smoked salmon and caviar especially

                                                                                                                                                                              2. I'm going to throw a bone for Desano.

                                                                                                                                                                                For eastsiders only.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. I haven't tasted all the pizzas in L.A., but I'm pretty sure it's not Papa John's.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. I'll add the 'Nduja pizza at Bestia into the mix for best overall. My favorite "convenience" pizzerias are Pitfire, Luggage Room/Stella Barra, Vito's and Bollini's depending upon where I am at the time.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. FWIW, I tried a Grimaldi's location this weekend in Las Vegas, and found the pizza to be no different, whatsoever from the el segundo branch..... Crispy thin, but not too thin, and the sauce tasted exactly how I remember the other's, not sweet at all, and slightly acidic and tasty. I had slices of both a plain cheese and a pepperoni pie, so other flavorful toppings did not interfere with my analysis. I find it difficult to detect any sugar in the sauce at all. And being as I'm not one to indulge in sweets very often, I'm a bit sensitive to sweet overtones. That is all.

                                                                                                                                                                                      15 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                                                                                                                                        shocker. nice DWEO. And by no different you mean tasty! I love the pepperonis they use too.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jessejames

                                                                                                                                                                                          Yes the pepperoni was quite good and got a thumbs up from the hubby & kids who regularly orders it.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                                                                                                                                            Which location? The location inside the Palazzo is pretty underwhelming compared to the Eastern location.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: A5 KOBE

                                                                                                                                                                                              the Eastern branch is where ive eaten a couple of times and had great pies!

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: A5 KOBE

                                                                                                                                                                                                And the Grimaldi's at the Fashion Show Mall has been uneven; I've had great pies there and just pretty good pies. Comparable to El Segundo. I agree about Eastern Ave being the best.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: A5 KOBE

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Green Valley.
                                                                                                                                                                                                  9595 S. Eastern Avenue

                                                                                                                                                                                                  It was nearby the high school where my son played in his basketball tournament.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                                                                                                                                                    And you thought it was similar to El Segundo?

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Ogawak

                                                                                                                                                                                                      "no different, whatsoever from the el segundo branch"

                                                                                                                                                                                                      and not surprised whatsoever here

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yeah, I have never been let down at that location. There used to be a frozen custard place next door but it closed. :(

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: jessejames

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Yes, love those smaller, smokey, spicy pepperoni. Tis a fine pie!

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gr8pimpin

                                                                                                                                                                                                      me as well...not that small thick kind but the special fennel pepperoni at olio are also on point for roni fans.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. re: Dirtywextraolives

                                                                                                                                                                                                    What did Las Vegas do or who did they bribe to get so many Grimaldi's locations when a giant city like Los Angeles only has one??

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gr8pimpin

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I believe they have much more lenient pollution laws with respect to coal fired ovens.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: A5 KOBE

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Grimaldi's, like many coal-burning pizzerias around the country, uses anthracite coal which is allegedly "cleaner" than burning wood, generally smokeless. I don't want to get into environmental arguments here because there is a real downside to using anthracite, but this is simply to explain how coal burning ovens are allowed in the LA area.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        More Grimaldi's are being planned for the LA area.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  4. For a greasy and foldable slice, go to Big Daddy's on the Venice boardwalk. It's good and I get one every day trip there.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gayr_zeee

                                                                                                                                                                                                      As usual, I feel overwhelmed by the knowledge and authority on this site. Being a recent addition, and at an advanced age, I can only hope to try many of the places that sound so good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Just wanted to add here(and I'm fine with a beating), that I think La Rocco's Pizza on Main Street in Culver City, has pizza worthy of Vito's and any other NYC style pizza here on L.A. And for something a bit different (like some pizza in St. Louis but not the type with Provel), I like Julie's Pizza on Palms and Sepulveda. The addition of corn meal, for an easier slide in the oven, makes a nice crunch to the crust.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. OH OH OH-----I had one of theee baste pizzas ever at Wolfgang Puck's at the Staples Center. It wasn't a planned stop, so I had no expectations. It was about 3 in the afternoon, so no crowd and the inside was pleasant enough. Got the wild mushroom, herbs, and cheese pizza. No tomato sauce. It's a little bigger than a "personal" size pizza. Wolf's crust is so tasty, I know it's a simple recipe and he uses honey, not sugar. I devoured the whole thing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: gayr_zeee

                                                                                                                                                                                                        My fav of the Spago pizza is the duck sausage.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. While certainly not the best, I was pleasantly surprised by the four cheese NY pizza at Fabrocini's Beverly Glen. Not a fan at all of there standard pizza (thicker) but to like the Beverly Glen Chicken salad and noticed the NY special pizza. Decided to give it a try after the host touted it to me. Would get it again.