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Feb 26, 2013 03:07 PM

So apparently, San Diego is the Country's Seventh Best Pizza City

Per Travel and Leisure:

I grew up here, and I love this city, but 7th seems like a stretch. On the other hand, I now live within walking distance of 2 very good Neapolitan style pizzerias, and a fairly good New York style pizzeria. . .hmm. . .

With that said, let the flaming commence!

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  1. I suspect this list has many New Yorkers in convulsions. Oh, the embarrassment of being #3 behind Chicago and Providence.

    It is interesting that San Diego is all the way up at #7, but then again, anytime a better place has been offered up it has been one of the top 5 in that list. Maybe San Diego isn't New York for pizza, but as I scan #8 to #20 in that list, I don't see any city that I remember seeing anybody here saying was much better for pizza than San Diego.

    1 Reply
    1. re: RB Hound

      I feel like the only NYers that would care about these lists are those who aren't originally from the city, you know, those hepped up on Brooklyn and the LES...

      In a different view, I don't know how there could be such a list when NY, New Haven, Chicago, and St. Louis for starters all have their own versions. If they all tried to make x-style then that's slightly more understandable, but it's hopefully understood that you don't go to Staten Island looking for deep dish.

      The only thing I really give a hoot about these lists for is to get recommendations of dishes- not whether or not the dish was good/who ate there- rather, what particular ingredients are utilized to create a menu.

    2. I think 7th is about right for SD. There may not be any true gems, but between Little Italy, Hillcrest and the North Park area, there are some very very good pizza places, maybe even a few outstanding ones.

      I think both SF and LA are too low on the list.

      I think Phoenix and Seattle are notable exclusions. And where are the NY Burroughs? Brooklyn anyone??

      3 Replies
      1. re: ipsedixit

        Agreed that PHX deserves a spot on that list.

        1. re: ipsedixit

          *Boroughs ;-)

          (at least you didn't say burros)

        2. Strange that New Haven is not on the list, close to the top. I guess it's not much of a Travel + Leisure destination city.

          1. What were they smoking?? OOPS... I understand.. it's T&L!

            1. The Italian immigration surge in the early 20th century defined American perception of things Italian to a large extent. Pizza is no exception to this phenomenon. Since most of the immigrants were from the provinces of Campania, Callabria, and Sicily the pizza of Southern Italy became and remains the bench mark of pizza for many Americans. Interestingly, a hundred years later, the original East Coast Italian pizza, due largely to influences by other American immigrant groups, has morphed into a dish that is barely recognizable to most Italians. If by pizza you mean bread dough rolled, tossed, or machine flattened, with some "stuff" on it and cooked in an oven then San Diego could very well be #7 in the USA. If you mean the dish they eat in Italy called pizza, not so much.

              8 Replies
              1. re: sandiegomike

                Just out of curiosity, what seven cities in the U.S. offer a better selection of the dish they eat in Italy called pizza?
                I don't travel a lot lately, but in my experience I haven't been to many cities with a lot of pizza that strikes me as more authentic than some of SD's better spots.

                1. re: Idyllwild

                  Off the top of my head (of the cities I've been to)

                  In no particular order:

                  (maybe Phoenix and DC)

                  But like I said up above, I think 7 is about right for SD.

                  1. re: ipsedixit

                    Brooklyn is not a separate city, only a separate county.

                    1. re: JRSD

                      Same could be said for Los Angeles (county versus city) but when talking about LA people inevitably lump places like Santa Monica, Hollywood, Pasadena, etc. into the term "Los Angeles".

                      Rinse, repeat for the term "San Diego".

                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        LA and SD are the inverse of NYC, big counties with many cities vs. big city with several counties. Gerrymandering in the Pizza rankings, I tell you!

                        The last couple of times I have been in Las Vegas, I wound up having very good NY style pizza. It seems too light on Neapolitan style pies similar to Bruno or Calabria, but definitely inching upwards.

                        In placing Phoenix and DC up there is that weighted more towards the quality of the best places, the overall number of places worth going to or some combo?

                        1. re: JRSD

                          RE: Phoenix and DC. It's about quality.

                          In Phoenix for example, I think it's really about Bianco (and perhaps two other places). I think if you are a pizza afficianado you really owe it to yourself to visit Bianco at least once and decide for yourself whether Chris is a genius, or a shyster. (Just like you should visit Delfina or maybe Una in SF).

                          Agree with you totally about LV.

                          1. re: JRSD

                            Your questions illustrate why a list like this shouldn't be taken too seriously - no criteria are established. Is a city with one or two outstanding pies better than one with dozens of very good shops?
                            I find it credible that SD makes the top ten. In my area, Blind Lady Ale House makes very good Neopolitan pies (purists will argue the gas oven disqualifies them, but the ingredients are top-notch and the pizza is quite tasty.), while Bronx and Luigi do decent NY style pies, Urban does New Haven style, and Calabria and Bruno get a lot of good reviews, thought I haven't been.
                            It's worth remembering that there is plenty of mediocre pie in NY, Chicago, Providence, and, yes, Italy, too.
                            I'll buy SD at around number 7.

                            1. re: Idyllwild

                              I would buy it as well. SD is definitely not the pizza wasteland it once was, that's for sure.