A SLICE OF THE PIE
Written By: Charlotte Farrell
This time of year, ditch the pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin pies and pumpkin everything else and go for something that brings joy all year round: PIZZA. Don’t get me wrong, I love the holidays just as much as the next gal, but when the stuffing, turkey, ham and mashed potatoes gets old, pizza is always there to pick me back up from my “holly jolly” food-coma. And whether you are a meat-lover or a veggie fiend, these LA joints are here to bring you back to life.
Founded in 2008, The Good Pizza has gained a rep for its Neapolitan-style pizza’s high-quality ingredients and drool-worthy flavor. “We don’t make pizza, we make art!” says owner Nando De Stefano. Go for the Vegitariana if you avoid meat, or try the Palermitana with sautéed shrimp and light spicy vodka sauce. If you have a sweet tooth, go for the Chocolate Pizza—yeah, you read that right. Buonissimo!
Native Knowledge: Their pizza, pasta and salads are made with authentic recipes from the Old Country (Italy, duh!).
8115 W Manchester Ave
Playa Del Rey, CA 90293
When it comes to dough, Pizzana doesn’t mess around. Candace Nelson, Co-Founder and Executive Pastry Chef at Pizzana says, “At Pizzana, pizzaiolo Daniele Uditi puts his own spin on pizza—taking Neapolitan pizza, rooted in hundreds of years of tradition and reimagining it. He uses stone-ground flour from Italy, works it by hand and allows it to rise for two days, resulting in a crisp, light crust that can be picked up with one hand, as opposed to traditional Neapolitan pie that can be soggy in the middle. He then tops his pizza with San Marzano tomatoes grown just for Pizzana and fior di latte shipped straight from Campania, and finishes with produce fresh from the LA farmers market. Pizzas range from the traditional, like the Margherita, to the cutting edge, like the the Messicana, a cultural mash-up of flavors including queso fresco, chorizo and cilantro lime sauce.”
Native Knowledge: Right now Pizzana is offering several off-the-menu specials including wood-fired lamb chops with gremolata and Calabrian Chile oil, as well as a pasta-inspired Vodka Pizza, made with homemade vodka sauce, fior di latte and parsley.
11712 San Vicente Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90049
It’s no wonder Instagram influencers are flocking to this Echo Park gem. It’s no wonder, with ‘Za options like the Hawaiiana with Canadian bacon, pineapple and chilies, and the Biancoverde with ricotta and spinach. No filter necessary!
Native Knowledge: The world’s first pizzeria opened in 1830 in the Bay of Naples. They were cooked in an oven lined with lava from Mount Vesuvius.
2100 Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026
What’s in a name? Bestia is wood-fired glorious-ness. I’m talking menu stars like the Salami Calabrese and the Alla’nduja pizzas. The flavors are dynamic and complex, but without being too fussy. Count us in!
Native Knowledge: Food brings people together, but pizza makes them fall in love! Bestia is owned and operated by a husband and wife team Ori Menashe and Genevieve Gergis. That’s Amore!
2121 E 7th Pl
Los Angeles CA, 90021
Spending summers in Bologna, Italy, as a child, Chef and Owner Steve Samson has insight into the delicacies involved in making really darn good pizza that is truly authentic. Craig Towe, the Chef de Cuisine says “I think Sotto’s pizza stands out from the others because we offer the best versions of the classics…as well as some newer, more non-traditional pizza’s (i.e. Fiorata, Coppa, Puttanesca). We have a little something for everyone. However, regardless of which pizza you order, the combination of our dough and our custom-made Stefano Ferrara pizza oven, is what really sets us apart from the rest. We make dough every day and ferment it for a minimum of 72 hours, which is what I believe to be the sweet spot for the best flavor/texture combo.
Native Knowledge: Towe adds, “We keep our wood-burning Stefano Ferrara oven burning around 900 degrees, which will completely cook the pizza in around 90 seconds while giving you the signature leopard-like char spots on the crust that we all love.”
9575 W Pico Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90035
“Pizza Purists.” That’s what the folks over at 800 Degrees call themselves, and with pride. You won’t find any preservatives or pre-frozen dough here. Theirs is made fresh in-house every day. “What sets us apart from others in the pizza industry is that food always comes first for us. Meaning, our number one focus is using fresh, high-quality ingredients to prepare our food. This instills confidence in our guests that each-and-every time they visit an 800 Degrees location they’ll enjoy great-tasting dishes that keep them coming back for more,” said founder and Chef Anthony Carron.
Native Knowledge: Follow 800 Degrees on Instagram at @800degreespizza for their daily (Monday-Friday) Pizza of the Day special. They post the pizza to Instagram Monday through Friday and it’s the POTD pizza, available for $6.50.
120 Wilshire Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90401
Mario Batali’s Highland Avenue spot is by no means a new kid on the block, but it has solidified its reputation for top-notch California-Italian cuisine that makes locals, tourists and celebs visit in droves. Some noteworthy pies include the Squash Blossoms, Tomato & Burrata pizza, the Pizza alla Benno with jalapenos and pineapple, and the classic Margherita. Molto Bene!
641 N Highland Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90036