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The best Neapolitan pizza in LA?

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Hey guys, I'm an LA to NY to back-in-LA-on-occasion transplant, and my time in the big apple has found me developing a big hankering for Neopolitan pizza. (From Keste, specifically, if any of you have been there!)

I've tried the following places on my visits here, none blew me away:

- Pizza e Vino near Irvine
- Antica Pizzeria in Marina del Rey
- Pizzeria Mozza (found it downright disgusting)

So, has the landscape changed at all? Any new players on the scene?

Mangia in my future? :)

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  1. I can't give an opinion on which Neopolitan pizza in L.A. is best. I haven't tried any of the restaurants on your list above. I do really like Bollini’s Pizzeria Napoletana both for his pizzas, 20oz RIB-EYE STEAK and some of the daily specials along with the Allagash Black on tap.
    http://www.bollinispizzeria.com

    1. On a cost/benefit ratio, 800 Degrees in Westwood.

      Overall, my current favorite is at Sotto.

      22 Replies
      1. re: taiwanesesmalleats

        800 looks great! I laughed at the cost/benefit - I was thinking Sotto was going to be $25/pie. Hah- 800 is comically cheap! In NY you could pay upwards of $20 for a pie! (Worth it as it might be :))

        Thanks for the rec- will definitely try these out!

        1. re: BigBrother

          800 Degrees is indeed great. I finally had a chance to try it last weekend. I think it gets knocked down the list here because of its price -- if it were selling them for $20 people would inadvertently rate them higher. Oddly, to be considered a "true Napoletan" pizza by Americans, it seems you need to sell your pizza for some absurd price. Perhaps most Americans are ignorant of the fact that our $17 pizza margherita sells for 4 euros in Italy.

          In any case, their pizza is la vera napoletana in terms of crumb and crust. It's executed very well. The tartufo is a rich flavor bomb of Northern Italian heritage. If you like the Pizza del Re at Keste you'll like this. They also had a brussel sprout, pancetta and scamorza special that I wish I could've tried. This combination of flavors demonstrates that the guy behind the scenes has the right idea about Italian flavor profiles.

          Is it a little soggy? Yes. Is this a conundrum typical to the Italian pizza, especially the napoletana version? Yes (the Romans make a more dry pizza). As Bourdain once put, quite succinctly, either you are a cheese guy or a dough guy. I like a pizza that is soft and creamy in the middle, and chewy and charred on the outside. 800 Degrees is just that. Those who eat pizza with knife and fork (like myself and virtually all Italians) will probably not be bothered by the wetness at the center.

        2. re: taiwanesesmalleats

          plus 1 sotto, with the pork cheek

          1. re: Thor123

            Easily +2 Sotto.

            Btw, Bollini is not Neapolitan style despite the name. Just look at the yelp photos.

            1. re: Porthos

              I thought Bollini had the approval of The Napoli Pizza Commission?

              1. re: Burger Boy

                Just look at the crust

                1. re: Burger Boy

                  I thought so too, and I believe I saw something on their website about it a while back. But there's nothing to that effect now. Curious.

                  1. re: Burger Boy

                    Use specific ingredients and pay the fee, after a quick site visit, you're approved.

                    1. re: Burger Boy

                      The only place that's still VPN Neapolitan in LA is apparently... Settebello in Pasadena. Shocking, I know.

                      Bollini claims to be Neapolitan. If you talk to them, they'll say they're Neapolitan. The word is strewn all over the website. They lost their VPN stat because they procured it through Antica, and Anitca is no longer the LA VPN certifying official? Or they stopped paying VPN's fees. But the VPN cert was still on Bollini's wall the last time I visited.

                      1. re: TonyC

                        Doesn't speak very highly of Antica if it is certifying Bollini pies as Neapolitan. The dough is rolled flat and there is no bubbly crust but I guess that doesn't matter here in LA.

                        1. re: Porthos

                          When they first opened in '07, and up til about mid '08, the crust was far better.

                          photo evidence 1:
                          http://www.flickr.com/photos/la_addic...
                          [pleasure palate

                          ]

                          evidence 2:
                          http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_yVddF7Ear2I...
                          [wandering chopsticks

                          ]

                          This is the closest wood burning pizza parlor to me, yet I have only ordered 1 pie since '08.

                          And of course Antica has since shuttered.

                          1. re: TonyC

                            These photos look pretty much like what we were served at Bollini's last Saturday. Bubbly, somewhat charred crust that tasted so good!

                            1. re: TonyC

                              Still looks like a flat thin crispy crust to me and not like the two photos below with thicker raised lip. Photo 1 from Ortica and Photo 2 from Sotto

                               
                               
                          2. re: TonyC

                            You are correct that Chef Chris Bollini claims to serve an authentic Neapolitan pizza. But I do not see anything related to http://www.pizzanapoletana.org/ on any of Bollini's website pages now.
                            Guess I'm going to have to try Settebello sometime soon to compare.

                            1. re: sel

                              yes, in this link: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8812...
                              the fact Settebello is the only VPN "certified" pies in LA now is mentioned.

                              1. re: TonyC

                                I got that point, I was just saying that the Bollini site has no VPN certification logos when I checked today.

                              2. re: sel

                                Bollini's never had any official VPN certification from Antica! their crust was nothing really Neapolitan several years ago...i had one good pie and one totally undercooked crust... Go to Settebello..ive only been once but it was an excellent pie! Sotto def also an excellent Neapolitan style, as was OLio the last time i was there...

                              3. re: TonyC

                                Just surfin' through here and noticed a comment about Antica/VPN certififying...VPN is still run in MDR by Peppe Miele who had enough of the restaurant biz after 30 years here when the Mall was remodeled and rents jacked up...he trains pizzaioli at his school down the street and travels around the world doing the same...he has trained people but not officially certified them(800 degrees) because they depart from the Traditional Neapolitan method...theyre not food nazis about it but the whole 800 degrees thing is way too assembly lined and i thnk there are issues with ingredients too.

                                1. re: lapizzamaven

                                  800 degrees, iirc, never claimed to be officially certified.
                                  it would be hard to turn out an officially certified pizza at the price they charge.

                                  1. re: westsidegal

                                    They are certified delicious

                            2. re: Porthos

                              yup.

                              should be called BULLini.

                              overpriced soggy slop...at least the last time we were there, and that's why it's the "last" time.

                            3. re: Thor123

                              sotto is the closest to the pizza i ate when i worked in italy (cooking at a michelin starred place on the amalfi coast)

                          3. antica pizzeria in marina del rey has been closed for many years.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: westsidegal

                              You mean a year and half don't you? I believe it closed in mid July of last year...

                              See here: http://la.eater.com/archives/2011/07/...

                              1. re: Servorg

                                i guess time doesn't fly!
                                really, it's only been a year and a half?
                                seems like eons.

                            2. Ok, just hit up 800 Degrees and Sotto back to back (we don't mess around :))

                              First Sotto- on looks alone, they get high marks- looked really authentic. Taste? Paltry. If we closed our eyes, it tasted like an Ameci's pizza :\. Pretty disappointing.

                              800 Degrees- I see what you mean by quality/price ratio! Got a margherita for something like $7. Really damn good! Not Keste quality, but really, truly good.

                              Still though, now that I've tried LA's latest, I implore all of you- if you find yourself in Manhattan, you *must* go here:

                              www.kestepizzeria.com

                              Religious experience-level!

                              Thanks all!

                              7 Replies
                              1. re: BigBrother

                                Sorry to hear you didn't enjoy Sotto. I've been there twice now and have loved all the food, especially the pizza.

                                Big fan of 800 Degrees.

                                As for Neapolitan pizza in Manhattan, I tried Motorino this past summer and it was indeed fantastic.

                                1. re: taiwanesesmalleats

                                  I'm surprised that you like the pizza at Sotto so much because it is a much softer crust than the crust at Motorino. My neo pie places of the moment are Settebello and Olio on W3 rd and Crescent Heights, both of whose crust is much firmer than Sotto.

                                  1. re: pizzafreak

                                    Neopolitan pies are supposed to be soft and chewy remember? :)

                                    1. re: Porthos

                                      Sotto's crust is not just soft, it is supersoft. Oh well, to each his own.

                                      1. re: Porthos

                                        porthos:
                                        fwiw, sotto's pizza will be available as part of the restaurant week promotion later in the month

                                      2. re: pizzafreak

                                        I'm not discriminatory :). There is just something about the pizza at Sotto that really gets to me, more so than the one I had at Motorino. I had the brussell sprouts and pancetta pizza at Motorino and everything really was fantastic (the salty pancetta, the slightly charred sprouts, the cheese, and the crispy crust). Despite all that, I keep wanting to go back to Sotto to have another pizza along with everything else on their menu for some reason.

                                        1. re: pizzafreak

                                          Olio's one of my personal favorites, though I haven't been in a while. I can't speak to its authenticity, but it suits my taste the best of the places I've been (have never been to Antica, however). I like Settebello fairly well for the price, which is way more reasonable than some of the places out there, as well as the fact that it's close to where I live and work.

                                    2. Settebello, Pasadena.

                                      6 Replies
                                      1. re: WildSwede

                                        Thanks, I checked out their website. Nice price point for what looks to be a properly made pie. Will check back.

                                        1. re: WildSwede

                                          Yup. Great pizza. Also, for those who don't like the sog, Settebello's pizza is much less wet than 800 Degrees. I personally don't mind it myself, but I know this is a big turnoff for some re: napolitana pizza.

                                          1. re: fame da lupo

                                            Glad you liked it. I was just in there today for lunch with Fellow CHer Will Owen.

                                            1. re: WildSwede

                                              As was I -- ordered the "Vico" partially for the ingredients (sausage, fennel, red onion, mascarpone -- pretty well paired) and partially for ol' Giambattista.

                                              1. re: fame da lupo

                                                Another trip. Had a special with pancetta, smoked mozz, chili oil. Fantastic.

                                                1. re: fame da lupo

                                                  I am thrilled you like it. Since I work 2 blocks away, I go about every 2 weeks. It is something I look forward to. This week's special: Polpettine Pizza
                                                  -Housemade Napoletana Meatballs
                                                  -Mascarpone
                                                  -Red Onion
                                                  -Mozzarella di Bufala
                                                  -Parmigiano Reggiano
                                                  -Basil
                                                  -Olive Oil

                                        2. I've been to Keste twice, and I don't think there's any place in LA that does Neopolitan as well. My current favorite, like many have already mentioned, is Settebello in Pasadena.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: Robert Thornton

                                            That's sad to me, because while I like Keste (multiple visits while visiting friends) their pizzas are not superlative either. Like a decent pizza you'd find in Anywhere, Italy -- which, of course, makes it damn good for the US, but not really a "wow pizza." My only superlative pizza experience here in the US was at Tony's Pizza Napoletana in San Francisco.

                                          2. I asked a well-regarded Italian chef who knows Naples (and pizza) about Neopolitan pizza in L.A. - and he highly recommended Mother Dough on Hollywood Blvd. (Los Feliz area).

                                            I haven't tried it, but I trust his judgement. Pics look good too.

                                             
                                             
                                            4 Replies
                                            1. re: foodiemahoodie

                                              Mother Dough is very good...a bit thinner and crispier and "dry"er than Sotto. Perhaps more closer to 800 degrees. Solid.

                                              1. re: Ciao Bob

                                                More of a Roman-style pizza, then?

                                                1. re: fame da lupo

                                                  Domain -- Chow

                                                  Kingdom -- Bread Based

                                                  Phylum -- Pizza

                                                  Class -- Italian

                                                  Order -- Wood Burning Oven Baked

                                                  Family -- Neopolitan

                                                  Genus -- Thineus Crustus

                                                  Species -- Motherus

                                              2. re: foodiemahoodie

                                                Finally got out to Mother Dough tonight with friends as a prelude to the Brian Wilson/Jeff Back concert at the Greek. (it's a 1.5 miles from the Greek).

                                                Very good! Had the sausage (with slices of Italian sausage), margherita, and the zucchini pizzas (show above are the zucchini and margherita). The zucchini was a surprise. All were very good. Wish they had a place on the west side. We went at 6:00 (opening time) and by 6:45 the place was full.

                                                This came highly recommended by Sal Marino (chef @ Il Grano, born in Naples.) He should know his neopolitan pizza - and he does. (I prefer what I had to Sotto - which was too white-bread dough-y for my tastes)

                                              3. Wow, you found Pizzeria Mozza "disgusting?" I'd be very interested to find out why. I made the mistake of ordering some for a party and picking it up from the to-go counter. It's a type of pizza which must be eaten immediately out of the oven.

                                                In any case, I've become a huge fan of 800 Degrees Pizza, due to the quality and cost. And you'll simply marvel at how quickly they move masses of people through that establishment. They need an efficiency award or something.

                                                15 Replies
                                                1. re: EarlyBird

                                                  Well, Pizzeria Mozza isn't really Neopolitan.

                                                  1. re: ipsedixit

                                                    Okay. How is Pizzeria Mozza not "really" Neopolitan?

                                                    1. re: EarlyBird

                                                      Just look at the pies that PM makes.

                                                      Your standard Neopolitan pie is thin, soft and chewy in the center, with bubbles and a varying degrees of char on the rim, a simple sauce, some mozzarella di bufala; and a few drops of olive oil.

                                                      That's not a PM pie.

                                                      PM makes some good pie, maybe some of the best, but it's not Neopolitan.

                                                      1. re: ipsedixit

                                                        There's some nuance to consider. In Italy, there are three "schools" of pizza that are defined irrespective of what you put on the pizza. They are defined, rather, by the dough/crust. The Naples pizza is as you described, the Roman is thinner and more crispy, and there are several variants of Sicilian pizzas, notably the "enclosed" pizzas or the foccaccia like pizzas (e.g. the famous Calvino in Trapani).

                                                        I think the shorthand way to think about this is that while certain pastas have typical ingredient combinations (e.g. orecchiette and anchovy, bucatini and guanciale), the ingredients do not define the pasta.

                                                        Italy is a very regional place and as pizza spread over the peninsula it gained local characteristics. You can, therefore, have a Naples-style pizza with speck, fontina and rucola -- Northern ingredients on a Naples pie. My favorite pizzeria in Bologna (La Bella Napoli) does an amazing pizza with prosciutto and porcini, two ingredients not typical to Naples but nevertheless appearing atop a Naples-style pizza. A Napolitan would declare this as not representing Naples (correct) however it is a Naples-style pizza with Emilia ingredients.

                                                        Hope that isn't too esoteric.

                                                        1. re: ipsedixit

                                                          Actually, "thin, soft and chewy in the center, with bubbles and a varying degrees of char on the rim," etc., is exactly how I would describe a PM pizza. I would agree that their more complicated pizza toppings may stray a bit, but surely, even in Naples, there are some variations that still keep the Neopolitan moniker.

                                                          1. re: EarlyBird

                                                            http://blogs.laweekly.com/squidink/20...
                                                            Go down to around paragraph 17. Silverton talks about the pizza at Mozza.

                                                            1. re: Feed_me

                                                              Nice article, thanks.

                                                            2. re: EarlyBird

                                                              Mozza's crust is crispy and crunchy.

                                                              A Neapolitan pizza crust is chewy.

                                                              Go to Sotto and compare the two styles yourself. They are clearly different types of crust.

                                                              1. re: Porthos

                                                                Finally, some sanity in all of this ...

                                                                1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                  Been doing my Neapolitan pie is supposed to be wet and floppy rant for almost 2 years now. Always happy to step back and let someone else hit their head against the forno for a bit :)

                                                                  1. re: Porthos

                                                                    You're always welcome to borrow my Neanderthal-sized cranium any day of the week.

                                                                    1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                      Wish I could...considering it is now believed that the Neanderthal cranium is as large as and likely larger than the modern day human's!

                                                                      1. re: Porthos

                                                                        That's why you can borrow it ... There's more than enough to go around.

                                                                2. re: Porthos

                                                                  Except the Mozza crust has considerable chew. I dined their once with a chef/baker who actually thought it had a little too much chew.

                                                                  I differed on that. I thought it had great chew.

                                                                  1. re: foodiemahoodie

                                                                    I'll agree with ipsedixit that Pizzeria Mozza's pizza is nothing like what I consider Neapolitan pizza, which has a much softer, chewier crust.

                                                      2. I like Settebello and Mother Dough.

                                                        2 Replies
                                                        1. re: ipsedixit

                                                          I like Mother Dough too, though it would be nice on a Friday night if they had more than one person cooking. Quality can suffer.

                                                          1. re: cls

                                                            I thought the food was good there, but didn't justify the prices. When I have gone to Una Pizza Napoletana, I felt like my $20 pizza was worth it, but not so at Mother Dough. Haven't gone since the first month or so they were open, though.

                                                            Their schtick kind of rubbed me the wrong way. It's not like they're the only place making pizza with naturally leavened dough, and I didn't feel like their dough was anything special compared to similar places. Things like closing because of their temperamental starter are a little obnoxious too.

                                                        2. Some local places I've enjoyed which make Neapolitan (or Neapolitinish) pizza are Gjelina (in Venice), Eatalian (in Gardena), and Pitfire Artisan Pizza (in Culver City). I enjoyed Sotto and Mozza, but thought both were overrated.

                                                          1. Had a guancale, green olive, Fresno chile, buffalo mozzarella pizza last night at Gjelina. The lip is not as raised as Sotto but it is definitely soft, chewy, droopy and Neapolitan style. Plenty of charred blisters on the crust. Definitely a change in style from what I remember 2 years ago. Excellent.

                                                            1. Obika, a restaurant in the Century City mall, opened a couple of years ago, built a pizza oven recently, and makes very nice Neopolitan pizzas. See obikala.com I had always eaten the pizza with anchovies until they added the truffle pizza. My guess is that the flavor is primarily from truffle oil; there are a few shavings of truffle, but they can't be enough to give it the flavor it has - although they do make a difference. But don't take my word for it - I am no truffle expert. The scent and the taste are delicious, so much so that I think I might be heading there now. Just trust enough to try it. Also, they have delicious mozarella.

                                                              Happy new year, all.

                                                              4 Replies
                                                              1. re: magiccat

                                                                Thanks for that tip, have always gone to the Beverly Hills location for the mozza bar, will brave CC parking to give this a try. Pizza with anchovies sound fantastic, but I'll pass on the truffle pie.

                                                                1. re: magiccat

                                                                  I'll second the pizza at Obika. Love the anchovy pie there.
                                                                  Can't say anything about the truffle pie -- I detest truffle oil on anything.

                                                                  1. re: magiccat

                                                                    magiccat:
                                                                    fyi, obika is participating in the restaurant week promotion later this month.

                                                                    1. re: westsidegal

                                                                      Somehow missed this. Thanks.

                                                                  2. Try Mother Dough in Los Feliz. It's been my fav neapolitan pizza in LA since the day they opened. I judge all neapolitan pizzas by the margherita for fair comparison sakes, and Mother Dough wins hands down in my opinion.

                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                    1. re: TailbackU

                                                                      Have you been to Settebello in Pasadena? How does it compare?

                                                                      1. re: alliebear

                                                                        I've been to both (as well as Sotto) although I did not have a margherita at MD so it's not quite an apples-to-apples comparison. I thought they were quite comparable in terms of quality and authenticity, although the dough and crust and MD might have been *slightly* puffier. I'd give an ever-so-slight nod to Settebello, which might also win out because I live in Pasadena (so it's easier to go there). Of the 3, I'd rank Sotto #1, Settebello #2 and MD #3. But it's very, very close.

                                                                    2. The best I've had in LA is Tomato Pie Pizza Joint's "Grandma" pizza in Silverlake. It is neopolitan style and incredible. Excellent crispy/chewy crust, san marzano tomato sauce, tons of fresh basil, and just the right amount of fresh mozzarella. It was rated one of the best pizza's in the US.

                                                                      7 Replies
                                                                      1. re: SherlockNoms

                                                                        Who was the rater?

                                                                        1. re: pizzafreak

                                                                          Alan Richman in GQ listed the best 25 pizzas. He rated it at number 7 in the nation.

                                                                          I used to live in NYC and I can easily say that Tomato Pie's Grandma (I haven't tried the other pizza's) is one of the best pizza's I've had the pleasure of eating. I highly recommend it!

                                                                        2. re: SherlockNoms

                                                                          That seems like a huge stretch to me. While Tomato Pie's pizza - even the Grandma - is serviceable, it's in a wholly different (and lower) league than Mozza, Mother Dough, 800 Degrees and others. Their dough is just yer average pizza dough, their cooks are neighborhood kids who aren't specifically trained to crank out Neapolitan pizza and their oven is a mersh pizza oven that can't put out the heat necessary for a true Neapolitan pie.

                                                                          Oh, and this is coming from a New Yorker who used to edit Alan Richman's work.

                                                                          1. re: JeMange

                                                                            I can't speak to whether the kids are trained well enough, or the oven is hot enough to be a "true" neapolitan but I can say that I find the Grandma to be more than merely "serviceable." I suppose I'm comparing it mainly to NYC and margarita styles. I enjoy every component of the Grandma, texture and flavor-wise. Process aside, as an end product I thoroughly enjoy it!

                                                                            1. re: SherlockNoms

                                                                              I'm with ya. I enjoy it too. It's just that this particular thread seems focused on authentic Neapolitan style pizza and the rigorous and specific manner in which it is made.

                                                                              It's esoteric chowhound wonkery but that's the reason many of us are here.

                                                                              1. re: JeMange

                                                                                Very true. I'm excited to expand my tastings to include the one's mentioned here! I desperately need to hit up Mother Dough and 800 degrees. I shall return renewed and with better comparisons! :)

                                                                            2. re: JeMange

                                                                              Have to agree with you, Je Mange...Alan Richman mustve stopped into a Pot store before rating Tomato Pie in the top 25 US pizzas...I wouldnt put it in a top 25 list of pizza in Calif! its definitely in AA ball at best compared to the major leagues!

                                                                          2. I finally tired 800 Degrees tonight and while it seems that it's an excellent example of neapolitan pizzas, I still love the Grandma at Tomato Pie more. Personally, I would choose the flavor of the grandma even though it may not be as authentic as what 800 is trying to accomplish (which I can't imagine even slightly compares to the real thing in Naples). The san marzano tomatos vs plum makes a world of difference for me. This is not to debate whether the Grandma competes as a true neapolitan, but rather as a delicious margharita pie. I'd love to know everyone's thoughts on how the two compare as a margherita pizza. If this veers too much from the original intent of the thread, then feel free to ignore! :)

                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                            1. re: SherlockNoms

                                                                              san marzano are plum (akd roma) tomatos

                                                                              1. re: Mento

                                                                                They are a type of plum with a slightly different flavor.

                                                                                While I still appreciate TPPJ's Grandma, I've come to acknowledge and thoroughly enjoy 800 degrees (and more specifically Sotto's ridiculously awesome Neopolitan). I cannot be held responsible for my naive pizza past. Chowhound has shown me the way.

                                                                            2. I once again had an excellent lunch at Settebello in Pasadena today.

                                                                              Started with the Misto platter then followed with the 'Settebello' pizza.

                                                                               
                                                                              1. sotto.
                                                                                i had their pizza for lunch today.

                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                  best neopolitan in the city right now imho.

                                                                                  their pastas and the pork chop is fantastic too.

                                                                                  1. re: cdub

                                                                                    Pork chop is the best. Its all great at Sotto.

                                                                                2. If you happen to head south towards Long Beach try Michael's Pizzaria, they have one opening up in Downtown LB, one in Naples near their restaurant which won a HUGE Zaget rating recently and one in the desert... they sent their chef to Naples to learn how to make Napoli pizza...

                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                  1. re: loreeLB

                                                                                    Just tried Michael's for the first time. While it was definitely good, I thought it was a bit underwhelming. Much too doughy for me and it was hardly burnt at all. Certainly undercooked when compared to Settebello on a good day.

                                                                                    My verdict: I would go back if in the area, but it is complete insanity that Zagat said it was the best pizza in the US.

                                                                                  2. Has anyone been to both Pizzeria Ortica and Sotto? I am a huge Settebello fan (although I maintain the Henderson, NV location is better than the Pasadena one) and would love to try Sotto based on the reviews suggesting Sotto tops Settebello.

                                                                                    BUT, I have been to Ortica probably five times or so (from Orange County) and in my opinion these pies don't hold a candle to Settebello or even Pizza E Vino... which I'm surprised the OP did not like.

                                                                                    So the question is. Are Sotto's and Ortica's pizzas pretty similar? If so, I'll have to pass.

                                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: set0312

                                                                                      It would be helpful if you described what you didn't like about the pizza at Ortica.

                                                                                      1. re: Servorg

                                                                                        Servorg--It's not that I did not like the pizza at Ortica, just that I did not find it at the level of Serttebello. But I have to say recently at Ortica the crust has been a bit on the drier side, and therefore not as chewy as I'd hope. If that makes sense? I'm just getting into the "foodie" scene so I still have a hard time figuring out what exactly I do not like about things!

                                                                                      2. re: set0312

                                                                                        The lip is more raised at Sotto slightly more chewy. The ingredients are higher quality and taste more pure.

                                                                                        But the center is still nice and wet as it should be.

                                                                                        1. re: Porthos

                                                                                          Interesting, that does sound like it might be different enough to warrant trying. Thanks for your help!

                                                                                        2. re: set0312

                                                                                          I've had Sotto pizza twice on different visits, margherita and the guanicale. I prefer Settebello more, specifically the d.o.c margherita. Interestingly, I've also had Settebello in Vegas but think Pasadena is the better of the two.

                                                                                        3. The best at this moment IMO is Olio, with a caveat. Go there either Thursday or Sunday before 1PM, when Brandon Trepp, who is the manager, makes the pies. His crust is identical to that at Pizzeria Bianco. This crust has a crunch when you bite into it, and a wonderful taste. The best Margherita in LA at this time.

                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                          1. re: pizzafreak

                                                                                            It's quite good. Thanks for letting me know what time to catch the good Brandon. I haven't had him make me a pie in last 6-7 visits there

                                                                                          2. I had the best Neopolitan pizza in L.A. Today. Pizza Bianco was in town for a charity event. The lines for that booth were longer than all others, including the chefs from Sotto, Connie and Teds, etc. Worth a trip to Phoenix just to eat a whole pie.

                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: maudies5

                                                                                              Really? I went to PB in Phoenix and was pretty underwhelmed. Better yet, stay in town, head to Pasadena and eat at Settebello.

                                                                                              1. re: WildSwede

                                                                                                We ate at PB and thought it was delicious. Maybe a little crispier than a lot of more purist Neopolitan places, but I like it that way.

                                                                                            2. Well, thought I would chime in a year later (am back in town!) Am planning to try Settebello and Mother Dough very soon (as you might see from my posts, neither 800 degrees nor Sotto came close to the sublimity of Keste in NYC ;) )

                                                                                              Any other updates/suggestions- let me know!!

                                                                                              1. I can't say it's the best because I haven't tried all the others but, I'd bet that Gio Cucina is a contender.
                                                                                                http://giocucinanapoletana.com/Pizza2...

                                                                                                1. How much do the pizzas run at Settebello? The website doesn't list prices.

                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                  1. re: granadafan

                                                                                                    $10 to $14 unless you start adding additional toppings.

                                                                                                  2. Very good pizza at Pizza Fuoco Napoletana in downtown Fullerton. I was very pleasantly surprised.

                                                                                                    http://www.fuocopizza.com/

                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: stuffed

                                                                                                      A distant 3rd place to Settebello and Pizza y Vino in the battle of certified pies.

                                                                                                      1. re: JAB

                                                                                                        If you mean Pizza e Vino I think it has slipped in quality of late. Settebello is good. Fuoco is right up there.

                                                                                                        1. re: stuffed

                                                                                                          agreed. Fuoco is an OC gem.

                                                                                                          recently had the Maruzzella at Eataly, and it was basically no better than Fuoco's "Roma". Granted, the plastic brick "tiles" at Fuoco leaves a LOT to be desired, but it is the OC.

                                                                                                    2. Pizzeria Mozza isn't Neapolitan, nor does it claim to be, and if you found it disgusting...

                                                                                                      1. Surprised no one mentioned Bollinis in Monterey Park. The owner learned pizza making in Naples and brought his wood burning pizza oven back from Naples. I'm no pizza expert but people seem to really get blown away by Bollini's version. Very thin crust and many different toppings. There other menu items are also highly praised.

                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: SoozyQ

                                                                                                          I think it's because people have realized that Bollinis isn't a Neapolitan style pizza just like Mozza isn't a Neapolitan style pizza.

                                                                                                          1. re: SoozyQ

                                                                                                            I don't think the crust is right at all there.

                                                                                                            1. re: SoozyQ

                                                                                                              Well the first reply in this thread on Dec 9, 2012 by sel (that's me) mentions Bollini's. And three more replies on Dec 27, 2012. Of all the pizzas that I've tried, Chef Bollini's Arson 451 is my favorite pizza in Southern California. The charred crust, toppings and a glass of Allagash Black on tap!