Southern California might not be especially known for its pizzas, but that doesn’t mean there’s any shortage of people looking for a great quality pies in the area. Whether you prefer New York-style slices or authentic Italian wood fired Neapolitan pizzas, create-your-own pizzas or gourmet pizzas, San Diego has some of the best pizza places to satisfy your cravings. Check out our list of the very best pizzas in California’s second largest city.
If you’re looking for fantastic New York-style thin crust pizza, Bronx Pizza is the place to get it in San Diego. They have a wide variety of pizzas on display for you to choose from, all at great prices. Though it may look small on the outside, there is actually a great deal of seating inside. The service is good and fast, even when there’s a line out the door. Pictures of famous Italian boxers and athletes, as well as miscellaneous New York street signs and maps, adorn the walls, reminding visitors of being in an Italian home in New York. Favorites are the pepperoni, the pesto, and the porko pizzas.
Bronx Pizza, 111 Washington St, San Diego, CA, USA, +1 619 291 3341
The Neapolitan pizza at Caffé Calabria is baked in a wood fired oven custom built by Stefano Ferrara, the third-generation owner of the Naples based brick oven maker. Calabria’s pizza makers experienced hands on training in Italy to bring San Diego the most amazing Pizza Napoletana made with soft dough that cooks in about one minute in a 1000ºF wood burning oven. Meant to be eaten with a knife and fork, the authentic Italian pies are soft and foldable with blackened char spots on the crust. The Prosciutto, Margherita, and Rubino pizzas are the most popular among the café’s patrons.
Caffé Calabria, 3933 30th St, San Diego, CA, USA, +1 619 291 1759
Pioneer of the custom pizza James Markham decided to move the idea forward with Project Pie, the culmination of Markham’s experience and learning. They have a menu of eight pizzas that you can pick from, or you can personalize your own pizza with as many great quality organic toppings as you like. You can watch as your pizza gets made and cooked in the brick oven and it always comes out quickly. They even have tasty salads you can get if pizza isn’t your thing, or if you want to balance out your pie. The dessert pizzas are also fantastic, with cinnamon sugar and icing or Nutella and banana. In addition, the gluten-free crust option is perfect for those with dietary needs.
Project Pie, 3888 4th Ave, San Diego, CA, USA, +1 619 241 2881
Buona Forchetta’s founder Matteo started this restaurant in 2011, hoping to bring a taste of his native Italy to his adopted home in South Park, San Diego. Focusing on the simple recipes that Matteo grew up on, Buona Forchetta strives to deliver an exceptional and authentic Italian experience to its customers. With a beautiful brick oven made by the famous Stefano Ferrara, the restaurant is able to make perfect Neapolitan pizzas. The Nicola pizza, Regina Margherita, and the Sofia are the most popular choices, and despite the giant crowds and lines often going around the corner, they manage to seat people quickly. Friendly staff, a great ambience, and a lovely outdoor patio make this a favorite for people all over the area.
Buona Forchetta, 3001 Beech St, San Diego, CA, USA, +1 619 381 4844
Unique combinations of tasty ingredients can be found at Zia Gourmet Pizza. The owner, Khlaed Waleh, is a warm and caring individual with a passion for the art of pizza — not only in terms of presentation, but also in its flavors and nutrients. The delicious whole wheat crust, amazing vegetarian and vegan options, and fantastic beers on tap draw all kinds of people in, from foodies to health nuts to beer lovers. Some favorite slices are the eggplant, the New Yorker, the rosemary potato pizza, Sweet Southern French (lemon garlic chicken, feta, caramelized pears, walnuts, and mozzarella), and the butternut squash. Most people like coming in and simply picking out the best-looking pizza without even knowing what it is.
Zia Gourmet Pizza, 3311 Adams Ave, San Diego, CA, USA, +1 619 284 4320