If you were anywhere else in the world, a pizza would just be a pizza. That is, of course, unless you’re actually in Italy, which is the pizza capital of the world. Away from its motherland, though, the pizza has also gained quite a following in the United States. If you want more than just another slice of pizza, here is a list of the best pizza places you can find in America.

New York: Co.

If you want authentic pizza, you should visit Jim Lahey’s eatery in Chelsea. The restaurant itself if sparingly decorated, which would lead you to believe that it’s not much of a pizza parlor. That is, of course, you smell their dough. Lahey, who owns the Sullivan Street Bakery as well, cooks his pizza over EarthStone oven. A whole pie might cost a lot, but nothing beats the taste of the pizza’s artisanal (if not scorched) dough.

Toppings for Lahey’s pizza range from zucchini blossoms to caramelized onions on béchamel sauce. The best pizza here, though, is the minimal and clean tasting Pizza Bianca. If you’re in New York, right now, this is definitely a place worth touching base with.

Vermont: Piecasso Pizzeria & Lounge

The best pizzeria in Vermont is Piecasso Pizzeria and Lounge. The joint has a black diamond status for pizza lovers thanks to their unique and mouthwatering pies. The restaurant is owned by a Sicilian family and has a talented set of young pie artisans who can carve expert runs on Mt. Mansfield. Like Co. in New York, the pies here are cooked on the hearth retaining the homey, traditional taste of Italian pizzas.

If you’re thinking of dining alone, you can do so without worrying about gargantuan servings which you can’t possibly finish on your own. Piecasso also serves personal pizzas with four slices. Pair this with a tall glass of homebrewed ale and you’re good to go.

For the best toppings, you should try the Tree Hugger. This has red onions, garlic, and fresh spinach. You’re healthy and gastronomically satisfied!

California: Antica Pizzeria

If you want the best pizzas in town, you should be adventurous enough to try parlors residing in low-rent areas. This statement was proven by Antica Pizzeria which sits in a discreet corner of Marina del Ray, California. Even carb-hating dieters from Hollywood can’t resist the call of their pizzas. You’ll see them coming out of the mall strip from fitness gyms, Gap, and Victoria’s secret. The smell is just that good.

Owner Peppe Miele just fixes the most perfect charred crust Neapolitan pizza which is cooked over wood fire to keep that distinct homemade taste intact. The shop in Marina del Ray is already Miele’s second pizzeria. The original Antica branch is somewhere in L.A. and fetching just as many customers.

The joint’s specialty is its Pizza Siciliana. This has basil, smoked mozzarella,
eggplant and chopped tomato. You can taste Italy in every bite.

Virginia: The Liberty Tavern

Chef Liam LaCivita keeps loose-belted pizza lovers coming with Virginia’s favorite comfort food. The Liberty Tavern’s two wood-fired ovens are kept roaring by the crowd who loves their more adventurous take on pizza baking. While a few pizza conservatives may be horrified at the unique granny smith apple, pickled squash, white cheddar and fried egg renditions, the place’s thin crust pizzas draw curious ones and fans nonetheless.

If you’re a traditional pizza lover, you can still enjoy the tavern’s thin crust by ordering the Classico. The best pizza here, though, is unquestionably the Four Chees rendition which binds fontina, Cabot white cheddar, provolone and mozzarella so well into that crunchy thin crust. These are belly busters done with flair.

New York: Di Fara

New York probably has the most top-of-the-notch pizza parlors in the country. Another one which made it to our list is Di Fara which is located in Brooklyn. The only downside here is that you have to wait before you can get served. The pizzeria which has been running its business since 1964, still makes only one pizza at a time. The best hours to order your favorite pizza is probably little before noon or a little before 6PM. Otherwise, you’ll be struggling with the acids in your stomach while waiting in line.

Make sure that you order the Margherita. This is your own slice of cheese paradise. The best toppings in the house are freshly-cut basil and some grated Grana Padano cheese.

Chicago: Great Lake

Aside from New York style pizzas, Chicago deep dishes have also made quite an impact to pizza lovers all over the world. In Chicago itself, though, some people still prefer thin crust pizzas over deep dishes. For the best ones, the place to be in is the Great Lake. This is a tiny, nondescript store in front of Andersonville. Owner Nick Lessins takes his time in the oven to serve you the best tasting mortadella in town.

Chicago dwellers don’t mind waiting in line for Lessins’ pizza and watching him create these masterpieces. With that much skill in pizza-making who would have thought that he’s Polish-Czech and not Italian?

Miami: Sosta

People at the South Beach may be watching their carb intake, but that doesn’t keep Miami from having one of the best pizza places in the country. The Sosta draws even the most figure conscious of crowds and there’s a reason why. The bella pies and biance variations are absolutely heavenly. Nothing less is expected from Chefs Fabrizio and Nicola Carro.

Pizzas here are topped with the best cheeses, including smoked scarmoza, stracchino, Gorgonzola, and Brie. If you want the best from the house, you should order the Capricciosa topped with mozzarella, mushrooms, ham, artichokes, black olives, wurtsel, and generous slices of spicy salami.

New York: Famous Joe’s

We’ve covered Chelsea and Brooklyn. On New York’s Manhattan side, you’ll also find a pizza place worth visiting. Famous Joe’s can give you the best “street” slice in a strip full of other pizza parlors. What more can you ask for with super thin, crispy crust, molten mozzarella and a turnover so fast no slice of pizza can have the chance to cool down on the shelf. If everyone’s buying it, it must be good, right?

The best flavor in this joint, though, is plain cheese. Extra toppings will just drown out the crust’s authentic flavor.

Now this is making me crave for pizza! :)

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