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Feb 7, 2012 09:05 PM

Where to take a "Pizza Virgin" to pop their cherry?

Where would you take a person who has never had pizza in their life (yes, such a person does exist), who says to you, "I want to try pizza".

With LA as your dining landscape, where would you take that person?

Not necessarily asking for the "best" pizza in Los Angeles, although if you believe that that should be the first place this person experiences pizza then so be it.

Just asking where in LA you would take a person for their first experience of pizza.

Some place high-end like Mozza? Some place a bit more plebeian like Vito's? Some place totally on the bottom-rung of the pizza totem pole like Sbarro's or Papa John's? Or some place totally off-the-wall like Pizza and Chicken Love Letter?

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  1. Certainly not Papa John's, unless you want them to never crave pizza again! I'd vote for Vito's, or possibly Casa Bianca. Nothing too foofy, not too thin or thick crust.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Chowpatty

      +1 for Vito's, the best "standard" NY-style pizzeria in LA, and an ideal starting point for a pizza virgin.

      1. re: Chowpatty

        Palermo in Los Feliz for the Pizza Rosa.

      2. My favorites are Mozza and Milo & Olive.

        Pizzeria Mozza
        641 N. Highland Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90036

        Milo and Olive
        2723 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90403

        1. Definitely no reason to start at the "bottom rung." I cringe just thinking what wouldve happened to me if Papa John's was my first pizza experience...Well, id probably be considerably lighter...get a slice at Vito's or Joe's then do a pie at Mozza!

          1. Personally, for a full-immersion introduction, I'd do a pizza crawl:

            - First stop: 800 Degrees - split a pizza margherita.
            - Second stop: Vitos - one slice each.
            - Third stop: Mozza - split a pizza. Butterscotch budino if not too full.

            That would give a first-timer a sweeping introduction to the wonderful world of pizza, as well as the variety of dining experiences LA has to offer.

            NB: I realize 800 Degrees isn't the acme of VPN in LA, but geographically it makes sense, and in the context of a crawl it probably works best. If you were starting out in SM, Stella Rosa might be better.

            1. The new 800 degrees in westwood might be a fun place for a pizza virgin. You get to see the pizza dressed and fired while you watch. The benefit, besides eating a darn good pizza is that it leaves you with plenty of room on the upper end to explore while setting a reasonable level of expectation for quality.

              While you are in the area go to Saffron and Rose for some Persian ice cream :)