This great city will never be in short supply of places to enjoy cheese-topped dough cooked in an oven, such is New York's obsession with pizza. Each month brings a bounty of new spots vying for pie supremacy; here are a few of our favorites from the latest crop of pizza purveyors.
EMMY SQUARED No pizza has been more talked about and celebrated than the Detroit-style square pies coming out of this Williamsburg spot—and with good reason. The decadent pizzas are buttery in all the right places, crunchy in all the right places, and cheesy in all the right places. The second pizza option from husband and wife team Emily and Matt Hyland has eclipsed their excellent Clinton Hill original to become one of the city's most sought-after pies. Get the Roni Supreme and build in time for a nap afterwards.
364 Grand Street, Williamsburg, 718-360-4535; website
SCARR'S PIZZA Also embracing the square (and the round, too) is this new Lower East Side offering slinging a superlative Sicilian on Orchard Street. Per Quick Bites columnist Scott Lynch: "the thick crust surprisingly airy, the cheese (a "secret mix" of three types of mozzarella, with a sprinkling of parmesan for bite) charred to a magnificent chewiness, the fresh (not canned) tomato sauce ladled on in just the right measure." The throwback spot also handles Personal Pan pizzas and regular slices with aplomb.
22 Orchard Street, 212-334-3481; website
BAKER'S PIZZA This Avenue A eatery bills itself as a destination corner pizzeria, a bit of an oxymoron as neighborhood pizzerias get most of their foot traffic from locals or passersby looking for a quick carb fix. Your average slice joint doesn't offer toppings like brussels sprouts, bacon and white truffle oil (the B&B) or speck, broccoli rabe, roasted red peppers and parmesan (the Speck-tacular), ingredients that set Baker's apart from Muzzarella Pizza down the block, a perfectly respectable and delicious slice joint in its own right. The pies at Baker's are enormous and generously weighted down with their toppings. And like any regular slice joint, they have plenty of plain slices ready to reheat on the fly.
201 Avenue A, (212) 777-7477; website
DENINO'S By no means new to New York City, Denino's may still be new to many New Yorkers who haven't deigned (or had the time) to travel to Staten Island to sample the original. Though not run by the same people, the MacDougal Street Denino's serves a satisfying version of the crisp, thin crust pies beloved by many an Islander and visitor—but without that romantic boat ride. Their sausage isn't quite living up to expectations, but their plain and other fully-loaded options are definitely fitting the bill.
93 MacDougal Street, (646) 838-6987; website
PIZZERIA SIRENETTA In other NYC institution expansion news, the crew behind Mermaid Inn debuted their pizza concept on the UWS earlier this year. They're doing the popular Neapolitan-style here, enough for one person to down in a single seating, with charred crusts and simple toppings. Do note that many of these pies come without cheese, as noticed by Scott Lynch, and swim clear of the Anchovy offering unless you're in love with the flavor of fish.
568 Amsterdam Avenue, (212) 799-7401; website
00 + CO and SCREAMERS PIZZERIA To fully embrace the non-cheese pie—or at least the non-traditional "cheese" pie—head to 00 + Co., the fully vegan pizzeria and restaurant on Second Avenue that's eschewing dairy (and meat) in favor of house-made, nut-based cheese and lots of veggies. The pies are rustically-shaped but artistically topped, playing on the natural beauty of the ingredients. There's a classic margarita-style pie with tomato, basil and cashew mozzarella and more intriguingly topped option with a farro-fennel "sausage."
Mushroom Pizza from Gristmill (Josephine Rozman)
GRISTMILL and PN WOOD FIRED PIZZA As the foundation of a pizza, a good dough is paramount, and many next wave pizzerias are taking a very hands-on approach to making sure their crusts turn out perfectly. Newly-opened Gristmill in Park Slope has a sourdough starter that traveled from Boston, while PN Wood Fired Pizza in Flatiron allows customers to choose the flour combination that sings out to them most to be the base of their toppings selection. For crust obsessives, these two are your spots.
PASQUALE JONES Of all the pizzerias on this list, this is the least pizzeria of the pizzerias. To start, pizza's just one thing on the menu; furthermore, the clientele aren't the usual pie-seeking crowd. But you'll see them there, tucking into thin crust options like the excellent Little Neck Clam, which employs cream, a heretic's gamble. Pile on plenty of hot peppers from the crock they'll drop on the table if your palate leans towards that type of thing. Be forewarned: getting a reservation here is nigh on impossible, so be prepared to eat after 10 p.m. when things calm down and tables open up.
187 Mulberry Street; website