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Una Pizza Napoletana, SF report w/ pics

Two of us went to try Una Pizza Napoletana on 11th & Howard. It's closest to Van Ness Muni Station, but close enough to Civic Center to walk about 10 min from there. There's also a bus stop I think #9 goes right in front & a few others. Street parking is available too. Rainy day, no wait for a table at 5:20pm Fri 11/11/11.

They only serve pizza - no appetizers, salads, or desserts. 5pm until dough is gone.

We got 2 pizzas which is enough for 2 people. One can serve 1 person or 2 not very hungry people.

We got:

Margherita $20 - San Marzano tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, extra-virgin olive oil, fresh basil, sea salt. I wish there was more sauce, more cheese, less salt. Crust is chewy, but boring to me. My favorite of the two we tried.

Ilaria $22- smoked buffalo mozzarella, fresh cherry tomatoes, arugula, extra-virgin olive oil, sea salt. Smoky tasting, not much stuff on it, no sauce. Just ok for me.

Water - tap, they give one carafe per table. 2 small glasses.

Coffee - $3 small cup friend got - he said tasted like sludge in espresso glass, 2 small pieces of chocolate given.

Credit cards taken or Cash. Two unisex bathroom available on the far Right. Press bottom of light switch to turn on.

Special Sundays opening starting at 5pm:
Nov 13
Dec 11
Jan 15
Feb 12 & more days to come

Una Pizza Napoletana
200 11th St, San Francisco, CA 94103

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  1. Those look more like appetizers, setting aside the price. Can one get a real meal nearby in the 'hood afterward?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Veggo

      Bar Agricole is just down the street. Personally, I found UPN to be very good pizza but not good value. There is so much amazing pizza in SF at places with better range on the menus that I just don't find UPN to be worth it. The smokiness of the pizza there is unique, but it's nothing I find myself craving. I would take Delfina over UPN anytime.

      Delfina Restaurant
      3621 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

      Bar Agricole
      355 11th Street, San Francisco, CA 94103

    2. My wife and I went a week after it had opened last year. I can't tell you how excited I was to actually try UPN's pizza after hearing so many rave reviews about Anthony Mangieri in New York.

      I think the entrance to the place is really cool and also like how the pizza oven is front and center.

      The physical space aside, I can honestly say that I REALLY wanted to like this pizza. The size didn't bother me as much as the fact that there was a "raw doughyness" to the pizza that I really didn't like. When you bit into the slice, the bottom surface of the dough was fully cooked but about a 16th of an inch above that tasted is if it hadn't been cooked.

      Maybe I just don't get it, but I've been to places like Motorino, Keste, etc. and never had this happen (both of our pies). If UPN is as close to true Neapolitan pizza you can find here in the US, then fine - I can save a plane ticket to Napoli.

      I will say this: I chalked it up as maybe working out the kinks - after all they'd only been open a week.

      If I lived in SF I'd certainly give it another chance, but when you're there on vacay you don't like to risk being burnt twice on dinner. I would go to Emilia's, Pizzaiolo, Flour + Water, Gialina, Pizzeria Delfina, and Zero Zero before I went back to UPN. I know others hold this pizzaiolo in high esteem, so maybe it was a bad night. Anyway, there's no shortage of options in this city.

      2842 Diamond St, San Francisco, CA 94131

      5008 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

      Pizzeria Delfina
      2406 California St, San Francisco, CA 94115

      Zero Zero
      826 Folsom St, San Francisco, CA 94107

      8 Replies
      1. re: ladybugthepug

        i so agree with you on the raw doughiness. as you, i much prefer those other pizzerias (tho i didn't particularly like F+W's, and never been to Emilia's) you listed, and also Tony's in North Beach.

        1. re: mariacarmen

          When was the last time you went to UPN? I wasn't quite sure if my experience was an off night or what, but I'd be willing to go back if I knew it wasn't MEANT to be al dente or whatever you want to call it. Since you can only go for dinner (I don't live in SF) I don' t like using up an opportunity on something I don't really like.

          If you've not been to Emilia's in Berkeley, you have to go. Keith is a one band and used to work at Pizzaiolo and Flour + Water. You have to call at 4 to setup a time to come in and eat - there's only about 8 seats in the place. You can call for carry-out but you should call at 4 for a pick-up time for that as well. He's a one man band that only makes about 20-25 pies a night. I would recommend eating it there when it's just come out of the oven. One of the best pizzas in the Bay Area.

          We've been to Tony's. It's pretty good. I want to try the truffle pie.

          5008 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

          1. re: ladybugthepug

            I went last night for the first time and was completely unimpressed. By the dough and style, by the sauces, and by the prices.

            Service was very friendly. But $100 for 2 small pizzas, a couple of glasses of wine, and a couple of beers? Might need to stop by Delfina just to have the pizza I was craving last night.

            1. re: Windy

              Does anyone know what their corkage is? I'm a fan of their pies, but not their wine list. I also thoght bringing my own wine would make a night at Una Pizza much more resonable.

            2. re: ladybugthepug

              LBTP, i JUST now saw this! I will try Emilia's, as i'm in the East Bay a lot, and always looking for a good pizza. i love their spare, sardonic website: http://emiliaspizzeria.com/

              belated thanks!

          2. re: ladybugthepug

            Traditional Neapolitan pizza is soft, not crisp or chewy. I think Mangieri consistently turns out pizza they way he wants them to be. It's not my favorite style.

            1. re: Robert Lauriston

              Well said. In Napoli, hot chili oil was a normal condiment on the tables. At Una Pizza Napoletana, they do not offer it, and they are not shy about telling customers who request it that it is not available. Nothing to do with tradition and everything to do with how Mangieri thinks it should be. The crust was interesting, and seemed intentional, but it wasn't strictly Neapolitan.

            2. re: ladybugthepug

              Where UPN was defining when it first opened in New York, I don't think he's all that notable in the context of New York or San Francisco's current scene. I love crust, but those pizzas look rushed.

            3. I loved the crust, charred bubbles and crisp bottom with an extremely pronounced "Chew"... The crust for me is of extreme importance..it is the foundation of the pie.....

              1 Reply
              1. re: ChowFun_derek

                ".it is the foundation of the pie....."
                Darn right, without it it's raclette with a little tomato sauce. ;-)

              2. pizza maker was italian?the napoletana style there is, San marzano tomato and buffalo cheese are more expensive than normal cheese and tomato,
                "Crust is chewy, but boring to me"
                what do you mind for boring? :) thank you.

                1. Went here on a recent trip. After all the hype, was really surprised to find it doughy and uninteresting. I have no problem with soft crust, but I'm telling you, this was doughy. I have a local pizza joint near me called Pizza e Vino, and the pizza there seemed to be more interesting: nicer crust texture, good blistering, decent sauce and toppings. Just my $.02. I had a no-cheese pizza at both places which may skew things.

                  1. anyone know if una allows for take out orders? if so, how far in advance should i call in? i want to swing by and a grab a pie and bring it somewhere.