As every drunk UCLA student and divorced dad knows, pizza is the ideal takeout food. Which means that in the middle of a pandemic, it’s going to be a lot of people’s go-to meal. And while we know that you’ve been with your favorite pizza place longer than your current romantic partner (or recent ex-), you don’t have to break up with your current spot in order to try a new one... but it couldn’t hurt.
So why not try a little pizza polygamy and check out one of these 13 excellent new options? From thin crust to thick, Detroit-style pop-ups Downtown to NY-style pizzerias in Long Beach, these are the best new pizza spots in Los Angeles.
Antico isn’t a new restaurant, but when the pandemic hit, they made a big pivot to pizza. And we’re glad they did, because, while we liked them as an Italian restaurant, we love them as a pizza shop. There’s nothing subtle about these big, rectangular pies - their thick, buttery crusts are loaded up with high-quality toppings, like on the Pineapple Express, with fresh pineapple, speck, and house-pickled jalapeños. And, you already know this, but don’t leave without a pint of their house-made ice cream - it’s near the top of our guide to the Best Ice Cream In LA.
Brandon Gray is the chef and titular “Brandoni” at this West Hollywood pizza shop. He used to cook at tasting menu spots like Providence and Trois Mec, and you can see the fine-dining influences on these excellent pies - ingredients include wild-caught Pacific shrimp, triple crème Brie, and Spanish octopus. All of the pies (there are more than 18 of them) involve ingredients straight from the farmers’ market, like the Born And Raised, which is covered in Munak Ranch heirloom tomatoes and multiple varieties of fresh basil. Our favorite pie of all is the Straight Up Menace (house-made lamb sausage, wild arugula, and spicy pickled peppers), but whichever one you order, you can count on perfect, blistered crusts, and fresh, inventive toppings.
Bootleg is a pizza truck (brick-and-mortar location coming soon) specializing in a type of square pie that, frankly, is a bit hard to define. One could make an argument that it’s Sicilian, Detroit-style, or even traditional pan pizza, but it’s kind of a mix of all three - heavy on the tomato sauce, topped with everything from veggies to pastrami, and featuring a thick, crispy crust with a soft interior that makes every bite feel like you’re biting into a custom-made pizza pillow. Pies rotate frequently, but the pepperoni-covered “Pep’d Up” is a mainstay and should always be on your order. Follow them on Instagram for the latest pick-up locations and ordering instructions.
We’ve had this cozy Highland Park spot in our rotation for a while, so when Cafe Birdie announced that they’d be adding pizzas to their menu, saying that we were “excited” would be an understatement. (“Accidentally dropped our laptop in shock” would probably be more accurate.) And we weren’t disappointed - the pizzas here are made Sicilian-style, which means they’re served in thick, square pieces and contain more dough than Jeff Bezos. As for toppings, we like the Honey Sambal Chicken, which comes with an eclectic mix of kimchi, Indonesian chili paste, and roasted chicken for a sweet, spicy pizza with a kick - a.k.a. exactly what you need after eight-straight hours of sitting on the couch.
If the name sounds familiar, you’re not going crazy from quarantine - it’s the same people behind Downtown’s Cento Pasta, only now they’re slinging bubbly Neapolitan pizza perfection inside Tartine Sycamore. We haven’t tried a pizza here that we wouldn’t recommend, but the Green Goddess (hot salad, cold salad, green goddess dressing, herbs, red onion, and feta) and Beef Birria are early standouts. Also, get as many orders of their Calabrian ranch dip as your greedy heart desires - you won’t regret it. They’re open Thursday-Saturday from 5-10pm for takeout, delivery, and patio dining.
De La Nonna is a pop-up that operates weekly at spots like Employees Only and Melody Wine Bar, serving excellent pies that walk the (OK, probably arbitrary) line between focaccia and pizza. The crust is light and airy, and sprinkled with flaky sea salt, and while they don’t overload it with toppings, you still get plenty of flavor from them. We like their white pie, with roasted fennel, mozzarella, and dabs of pesto, and the Market pie, with a super-herbaceous cream sauce and crispy parmesan. Either way, you can’t go wrong. Their Nonna Pack is a great deal - it includes two pizzas, a salad, and a bottle of wine for $55 - which, along with the ocean views at Dudley Market, make it an ideal place for a date night.
One of the few Detroit-style spots in Los Angeles, Dough Daddy is an excellent pop-up in DTLA. Their square pies are defined by crispy edges, thick, bread-y crust, about a pound of creamy, salty Wisconsin brick cheese, and messy rows of sweet, fresh tomato sauce (added on top, rather than directly to the dough). Make sure you also add the pepperoni, which is cooked perfectly so the edges curl up to make tiny little swimming pools of grease. It’s going to take some effort to order - you’ll should follow them on Instagram and go from there - but in the end, all the work will be worth it for these excellent pies.
LA’s obsession with Detroit-style pizza is officially in hyperdrive, and that’s certainly not a bad thing in our books. Just be sure to put Dtown Pizzeria at the top of your list. Operating inside Phorage in West Hollywood, this pop-up is run by Detroit native Ryan Ososky, who is cranking out the kind of real-deal, Detroit-style pizza that reminds us of Buddy’s or Jet’s (for any Detroit natives reading this). The crust is perfectly golden and crispy with a light, airy center that makes taking down a whole pie by yourself a very doable option. The 1946, which comes topped with a red stripe - not the beer, in Detroit that means a thick ribbon of marinara - and oregano, and The Goomba (pepperoni and fennel pollen) are standouts.
Much like Nicki Minaj’s alter ego, the focus at Evan Funke’s new Hollywood restaurant is on all things Roman, including Tonda-style pies - super-thin, round pizzas that come on perfect, almost-charred crusts. Our favorites are the classic margherita, with basil, fior di latte cheese, and salsa di pomodoro (a.k.a. tomato sauce, for those not fluent in Italian), and the diavola, a fiery pizza made from a mix of red sauce, peperoncino, and super-spicy salame piccante. Like the lineup of pastas at Funke’s other spot, Felix, these pizzas aren’t flashy - they’re well-crafted testaments to traditional techniques (and chef Funke’s fastidiousness), both of which are welcome additions to the pizza scene. Fingers Crossed is currently available for dine-in only. Reservations can be made through their website.
This popular Venice spot recently added wood-fired pizzas to the menu, and in keeping with the “something for everyone” ethos of said menu (which is also probably the secret to Great White’s success), there’s the perfect pizza for just about every occasion. Want a pie at brunch? The 55° is a pretty solid approximation of Nova lox, with cold-smoked salmon, red onions, capers, and dill atop a schmear of chive crema and a charred crust. Looking for something super-savory at dinner? Like the name implies, their Truffle Fungi pairs deep, rich truffles with plenty of earthy mushrooms (and a white-wine lemon cream). Or, if you’re just in the mood for, like, a regular pizza, their pepperoni pie has about seven pounds of perfectly crisp, slightly salty pep on it, and it might be our favorite of the bunch.
Opened by the co-owner of Hatchet Hall and the former executive chef at L&E Oyster, Little Coyote in Long Beach feels like a true throwback, the kind of casual pizza place that, as a kid, you begged your mom to stop at after picking up a video from Blockbuster. The pizza itself comes closest to New York-style, with massive slices you can fold in half, crispy thin crust that’s been buttered within an inch of its life, and classic toppings that range from pepperoni to sausage and mushrooms. That said, the white pizza - with spinach, ricotta, and mozzarella - is our favorite pie on the menu.
Often, the best pizzas are the ones that conjure up memories from your childhood - Little League post-game parties, afternoons spent at arcades, terrifying delivery drivers with a VHS copy of Angels With Filthy Souls, etc. - and the Hapa Pizza at Ospi is no different. Co-owner Melissa Saka’s tribute to the ground-pepperoni pies she grew up eating at Long Beach’s iconic Domenico’s, it’s topped with slow-roasted pineapple, pickled and raw jalapeños, and (of course) piles of spicy ground pepperoni, creating something that’s both nostalgic and pretty novel: An actually good Hawaiian pizza.
If you know one thing about Tartine, it’s that they make incredible sourdough bread. But what you might not know is that their Silver Lake and Sycamore locations recently started serving pizza - and that sourdough is still the star. Fluffy, chewy, and slightly funky, it packs a lot of flavor and texture into each bite. They tend to go a bit overboard with toppings, so go for something simple, like the Queen, a margherita pie that lets the sourdough shine.