Though San Francisco is not known for its pizza compared to, say, the New Yorks and Chicagos of the world, a slew of new pizza joints in the past five years are putting the City by the Bay on the pizza map. In typical San Francisco fashion, the Neapolitan-style pie continues to be a fan favorite for its simple and fresh ingredients—just like the original ones crafted in Naples, Italy. But California-style, deep dish and now even Jersey-style pies are gaining a following at local pizzerias. Here are eight that will entice you to have at least one more slice.
Tony’s Pizza Napoletana
A San Francisco institution, the wait at Tony’s Pizza Napoletana often averages about two hours—no joke. It’s worth it, though, because 12-time World Pizza Champion Tony Gemignani doesn’t discriminate when it comes to pizza variety. Options run the gamut, with about a dozen pizza styles that range from wood-fired Neapolitan to cracker-thin St. Louis-style to square Detroit-style to, of course, California-style. The only one missing is Chicago-style, which is available at sister spot Capo’s a few blocks away. 1570 Stockton St., San Francisco, 415.835.9888.
Patrons at Mozzeria use pen and paper to order the delicious pies made at one of the only deaf-owned-and-operated restaurants in the country. Deaf couple Melody and Russell Stein craft their Neapolitan pizzas in a 5,000-pound Stefano Ferrara oven, located in the center of the restaurant where guests can watch their pizza rise directly in front of them. Traditional marinara and margherita pizzas complement the more adventurous creations such as the radicchio pizza, made with Gorgonzola, mozzarella, truffle honey, peas and almonds. 3228 16th St., San Francisco, 415.489.0963.
The new kid in town, Jersey, opened in spring 2015 serving an authentic—you guessed it—Jersey-style crust. It is a place where the Rosenthal brothers (who also brought Town Hall, Salt House and Anchor & Hope to San Francisco) return to their roots and offer San Franciscans a taste of Jersey hospitality. Traditional pepperoni and meatball pizzas scream Jersey while others such as the delicata squash, made with kale, sage and goat cheese on a California-style crust, pay homage to the California locale. 145 2nd St., San Francisco, 415.912.1502.
Una Pizza Napoletana
The bubbly crust of the Neapolitan pizza from Una Pizza Napoletana is deliciously seasoned and topped with fresh ingredients. Consistency is key for Anthony Mangieri, which is why his 12-inch round pies are not cut into slices. Instead, let the ingredients meld together the way Mangieri intended. Open only Wednesday through Saturday from 5 pm until “out of dough,” the restaurant’s exclusivity speaks volumes of the quality. 210 11th St., San Francisco, 415.861.3444.
Del Popolo gained a cultlike following when it started serving its Neapolitan-style pies from a glass-enclosed food truck in May 2012. The food truck still makes the lunch rounds Tuesday-Friday, and the culinary team opened its Lower Nob Hill location in November 2015. Now, foodies can enjoy a glass of wine or antipasti before diving into one of the famous wood-fired pizzas. The butterball potato with leeks, fontina and hot honey is a crowd pleaser. 855 Bush St., San Francisco, 415.589.7940.
Pizzeria Delfina has reached veteran status in regard to serving Neapolitan-style pies. Since opening in the Mission in the late 1990s, the restaurant has attracted so many San Franciscans with its delicious crust and use of local ingredients that it has expanded to include three additional Bay Area pizzerias (in addition to the owner’s two other eateries, Delfina and Locanda Osteria & Bar). Grab a seat at one of the original restaurant’s popular sidewalk tables for some great people watching. 3621 18th Street, 415.437.6800; 2406 California St., San Francisco, 415.440.1189.
Little Star Pizza
Though some might argue that Chicago-style deep dish isn’t technically pizza, Little Star Pizza is here to prove them wrong. The cornmeal crust is crispy and melt-in-your-mouth delicious, and the flavorful ingredients are always consistent. Start with the classic Little Star—spinach, ricotta, feta, mushrooms, onion and garlic—or order the off-menu Brass Monkey, which includes the same ingredients with sausage added. Although known for its deep dish, the restaurant also serves up thin-crust pizzas that don’t disappoint. 846 Divisadero St., 415.441.1118; 400 Valencia St., San Francisco, 415.551.7827.
In operation for more than 25 years, Pauline’s Pizza has stood the test of time, watching the Mission neighborhood grow up around it. The restaurant’s secret is using fresh ingredients grown in Pauline’s very-own organic gardens—one in Berkeley and the other at Star Canyon Ranch in the Sierra Foothills. Plus, its wine bar next door serves up wine from Pauline’s Winery. 260 Valencia St., San Francisco, 415.552.2050.