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Do You Agree with This List of Top 101 Pizzas?

I just received this article from Bake Magazine, based on a post from The Daily Meal newsletter, listing their top 101 pizzas in the USA.  As I read through it I was pleased to see how many of these pizzas I have personally tasted (about half — wow, I forgot how much pizza I’ve had over the years and how many places I’ve visited) and also thought of a few places I think should have made the list and, also, which ones I think may be over-rated or good but not top 101 worthy.

Of course, we all have a favorite place, probably unknown outside our community, that we think the world needs to knows about but probably never will.  In “American Pie: My Search for the Perfect Pizza,” I wrote of two kinds of perfect pizzas, the paradigmatically perfect and the contextually perfect pizza. The first is a pizza that is so well executed and delicious that it is intuitively to obvious to anyone how great it is even if they’ve had no history with the place, while the second is perfect because of a personal connection we have with the place, such as childhood memories or relationships forged there associated with the flavors, aromas, and taste memories associated with that pizza. And, of course, sometimes a place is perfect in both categories — how lucky we are to know such a place (and most of us do). This top 101 list is obviously aimed at the first category, not based on memories or associations but with execution and pure flavor, and I would love to hear from you of any places you think should have made the list based on that criteria.  Here’s the link so check it out and then let’s start a thread here with your thoughts:

Looking forward to hearing if you concur with these findings, think a great place was overlooked, or any other comments regarding top 101 lists and the like. Pizza elicits strong emotions so let’s keep it civil and constructive; no bashing other people’s opinions or yelling. Pizza is, above all, fun, so let’s keep this comment thread fun too.



This is not the 101 best pizzerias in the USA, but, rather, the most famous. There’s a big difference. Case in point, Lombardi’s- well known, but incredibly inconsistent.

    Peter Reinhart

    Great point! Anybody else have any thoughts on this?

Cal Oak

I always enjoy Arizmendi. They consistently offer delicious, thin crust, vegetarian pizzas. I live in Oakland and go here:


Being a Chicagoan transplanted to Northern California, I love deep dish, stuffed pies. San Francisco Capo’s is just as good as the best of Chicago. It is run by the “Pizza Bible” author and Tony’s owner. Zachary’s is the other Bay area winner.
BTW, the “problem” with each of your books is the first recipe I try is so great, I just make it again and again!


We are making some of the best WF pizza in the country at our humble little restaurant in a former donut shop in Rhode Island. Our “Parma” is locally made Daniele prosciutto with locally made Narragansett Creamery fresh mozz and baby arugula.


I went to Peppi’s a few years ago and had their clam pizza and I was disappointed; the clams were tough and fishy tasting. Their margherita was good but Modern’s was better – more succulent and flavorful.

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Pizza Quest is a site dedicated to the exploration of artisanship in all forms, wherever we find it, but especially through the literal and metaphorical image of pizza. As we share our own quest for the perfect pizza we invite all of you to join us and share your journeys too. We have discovered that you never know what engaging roads and side paths will reveal themselves on this quest, but we do know that there are many kindred spirits out there, passionate artisans, doing all sorts of amazing things. These are the stories we want to discover, and we invite you to jump on the proverbial bus and join us on this, our never ending pizza quest.

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American Pie
Artisan Breads Every Day
The Bread Bakers Apprentice
Brother Junipers Bread Book
Crust and Crumb
Whole Grain Breads

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