By Matthew Hacke | Photographs by Michael Fornataro
You can never go wrong with pizza, and with Pittsburgh’s expanding and thriving restaurant scene, there’s enough dough to go around! We visited three, excellent options for some of the best pizza in the city.
Walking into DiAnoia’s Eatery in the Strip District is like being transported to a café in Italy. The ambiance and aroma capture the essence and feel of a European eatery. DiAnoia’s signature Old World pizza — a New York-style slice — is the staple of its pizza menu. “At this time, this is our specialty pizza,” says Dave Anoia, owner of DiAnoia’s Eatery. “You can get a wide variety of toppings on it.” There are over 50 to choose from — cheeses, meats, veggies, and the like! DiAnoia’s Eatery is already looking to expand its pizza offerings, with plans for its back room to be the home of the future DiAnoia’s Pizzeria. “The hope is that it will be open sometime in early 2018,” continues Anoia. While you might have to wait a little while for the pizzeria to open, you don’t have to wait to try Anoia’s favorite slice. “We do one that has a combination of hot soppressata and mixed mushrooms,” he says. “It’s the perfect combination of salt, spice, sweetness from the tomatoes, and crisp of the crust.” Now that’s a pizza! Enjoy a pie Tuesday through Thursday in the evening or any day for lunch. Be sure to try DiAnoia’s lunchtime special: a whole pizza with a bottle of sparkling red Raboso wine for $50.
DiAnoia’s Eatery, 2549 Penn Ave., Strip District. 412.918.1875. dianoiaseatery.com.
Slice on Broadway
With over 20 specialty pizzas and a fourth pizzeria opening in East Liberty soon, Slice on Broadway has been a go-to for pizza in the last seven years. “Each day is an adventure,” says Rico Lunardi, owner of Slice on Broadway. “Every time I make a pizza, though, it creates a calmness knowing that I am crafting something and putting love into making food for friends, family, or our loyal customers that I have met over the years.” Some of the shop’s popular pizza bites include the Margherita, which is a classic Italian pizza with tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, and basil, as well as the Athena, which is a white pizza topped with fresh baby spinach, sliced tomato, and feta cheese. For Lunardi, it’s all about tradition. “Slice on Broadway is different from larger chains in that we stick to traditions,” he says. “We hand-stretch all the dough, use wooden pizza peels, and cook directly on stone.”
Slice on Broadway, sliceonbroadway.com.
Vallozzi’s Pittsburgh is a mecca of delicious Italian food in the center of Downtown. Take one look at its pizza menu alone, and you’ll surely be smitten. “We have guests who have moved from the area who still call to have our pizza shipped to them all over the country,” says Julian Vallozzi, owner of Vallozzi’s Pittsburgh. “They pay any amount of shipping necessary to get it to them, and we regularly ship to customers in California, Nevada, Florida, and Texas.” The pizza features a pastry, flaky-style crust, with dough and sauce recipes passed down from Vallozzi’s grandmother’s family, based in Abruzzi, Italy. Favorite pies include the Sicilian, which is a white pizza with fresh tomatoes, and the Spinach pizza, which is topped with spinach, onion, smoked mozzarella, and crumbled goat cheese. Keep an eye out for seasonal toppings, like squash, pumpkin, or Brussel sprouts, to hit the menu soon!
Vallozzi’s Pittsburgh, 220 5th Ave., Downtown. 412.394.3400. vallozzis.com.