Most people recognize New York pizza by its thin, foldable shape. But when it comes to making a truly authentic New York-style pie, what goes on top is just as important. The chefs at Lucky's NY Style Pizza know this, which is why they craft each pizza using only whole milk mozzarella and fresh toppings such as salami, roasted red peppers, artichoke hearts, and ricotta cheese. They put just as much care and consideration into their other dishes, whether they're building a five-layer lasagna or hand-rolling dough pockets to create cheesy calzones. Even the humble slider gets an upgrade here, as the chefs swap out the beef patty for a homemade meatball and use a house-baked garlic roll in place of the traditional hamburger bun or donut hole.
Ray’s New York Pizza offers a menu filled with delicious New York–style pizzas, pastas, salads, sandwiches, and more, all made from fresh ingredients. Start out by throwing on your best bomb-squad costume and carefully approaching an explosive plate of chicken bursts ($6.75) served with ranch, garlic, or hot sauce, and top it off with a warm bowl of chili ($2.99). Alternately, use bits of candy corn you saved from last Halloween to lure a chicken, gyro, or veggie-filled pita wrap ($7.50) into your mouth trap. Pizzas can be procured in classically foldable slices ($2.75–$4.25) or in 14-inch ($14.15–$18.70), 16-inch ($16.50–$21.25), or 18-inch ($17.75–$22.75) sizes. Meat lovers will appreciate Ray’s meat pizza, which features pepperoni, sausage, ham, and meatballs, while the gourmet veggie pizza will delight herbivores and herbivoyeurs with a conglomeration of eggplant, zucchini, yellow squash, and other legumes.
Zucca was founded by a trio of forlorn New York natives who longed for a taste of a thin, crispy-crusted, Staten Island–style pie. The results are presented on a menu dense with Italian delights. Starters such as crispy fried risotto and mozzarella balls ($7) and fresh bruschetta ($6.25) make satisfying meal bases for the award-winning pizzas. Pies are offered in two sizes—personal portions ($8+) or 18" discs ($13+)—and come customizable with more than 25 toppings, including bacon ($2), eggplant ($2), and roasted red peppers ($3). Specialty pies such as the expo-winning victory pie ($19 for 18" pie), a Margherita pizza with parsley sausage, mushrooms, and shaved parmesan, will tame topping negotiations, while hand-held calzones ($7–$9) and the extensive selection of popular pasta dishes ($10–$15) and entrees ($13–$21) are sure to delight.
Grand Slam Pizza's resident dough designers crown pies with 17 assorted toppings before baking them into bubbling, cheesy teething toys. Diners can thumb through the menu to test it for potential scratch-and-sniff capabilities and to select one of many specialty pizzas, such as the bacon cheeseburger, a delectable combination of crumbled hamburger, bacon, and mozzarella cheese (16", $14.99). Diners can also craft their own pies (16", $9.99) by mixing toppings ($1.25 each) as diverse as ham, black or green olives, sausage, and mushrooms. An order of 10 hot wings ($5.99) offers warmth to tongues cold from cleaning the freezer, and cinnamon stix with icing ($3.99) ensure that meals end as sweetly as a collision with an ice-cream truck.
New York–Style Pizza | Specialty Slices | Featured on Man v. Food | Vegetarian Alternatives
When to Go: For dinner and a show, stop by at 3:30 p.m. or 8:30 p.m. on Monday–Thursday, when Big Pie typically schedules its Carnivore Challenge. During this 60-minute feat, one hungry duo attempts to eat an 11-pound, meat-laden pizza in exchange for a $250 cash prize. The challenge is as daunting as it sounds—not even the team from the Travel Channel series Man v. Food could conquer it.
Inside Tip: Make sure you show up with an especially hearty appetite. Even single slices are massive here, since they're cut from one of the pizzeria's 30-inch pies.
Pizza and pasta headline the menu at Pisano's where, house-made marinara sauce simmers on the stove waiting to smother piles of spaghetti and submerge calzones. At the same time, the kitchen crew tosses dough by hand to craft pizzas that give diners a more authentic taste of New York than licking their televisions when Law & Order is on. Diners can enjoy their meals indoors or on the covered patio where they can warm their toes by the fire pit on chilly nights.