Has there ever been a pleasure quite so pure as taking that first bite of a piping hot pizza? It is the food of celebrations, the food of commiserations, the food of “thanks for helping me move in but we’ll have to eat this on the floor”. This ever so holy grail of a food is so beloved that even its birthplaces are treated with reverence; Italy, Chicago, even New York are vital pilgrimages for any food lover. This reverence, however, has led to some suggesting that truly good pizza cannot be found outside of these homelands. We are here to debunk this myth. Sit back and enjoy our Eaten approved guide to the best Pizza in London, the city where the world’s best pizzas can bake together in perfect harmony.
Best On Eaten - L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele
Famous for being the ‘eat’ in EatPrayLove, L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele in Marylebone is almost a carbon copy of the Italian original, right down to the giant wood fired oven shipped all the way from Napoli. The result is a love letter to classic Italian pizza; soft, sloppy, the freshest ingredients and just the right amount of crispy, pillowy crust. The menu here actually has more variety than its Italian counterpart (which only has cheese, double cheese, or no cheese at all), and each and every pizza is a true joy to eat. If it’s good enough for Julia, it’s good enough for us.
Best Value - Pizza Union
Pizza Union is one of those places where you really can’t go wrong. The locations are convenient, the vibe is chilled, and the pizza starts at £3.95 for a Margherita. Yep, we kid you not. What’s more, it’s actually good. Really good. The flavours are powerful without being overwhelming, the dough is crispy and the cheese is streeeetchy. And the fact that you can get two 12-inchers and STILL have change from a tenner? Outstanding.
Best Marinara - 50 Kalò
Everything about 50 Kalò screams authentically Italian; from the classic decor, to the wonderfully rich tomato sauce, to the mozzarella that is flown in all the way from Campania. What we love about this pizza joint is the elegance of the menu; it’s expansive, but every item has been carefully thought out and feels like it truly belongs there. Our favourite here is the Marinara, a fantastically delicate, savoury pizza that is light, crispy and immensely satisfying.
Best Vegan - Purezza
In the battle for the best vegan pizza in London, Purezza is still our hero. Their winning formula is a combination of proofing their sourdough bases for a minimum of 48 hours, and making their vegan mozzarella in-house using the freshest possible ingredients. Whilst all of their pizzas are well made and fantastically flavoured, the star here is the ‘Couch Potato’, a delicious medley of smoked mozzarella, roasted aubergine, oven baked potatoes, basil leaves and shaved seitan on a white base, all covered with creamy garlic mayo.
Best Drunk Food - Voodoo Ray’s
If you find yourself several beers deep and have the kind of greasy, cheesy hunger that a kebab just can’t satisfy, Voodoo Ray’s has got you. The pizza is huge - it comes by the slice or as a whole, 22-inch New York style whopper - and has so many wacky toppings that you’ll be spoilt for choice. They also make fabulous frozen margaritas on sight as well as a decent selection of beer (and their servers won’t laugh at you if you try and pay with your Oyster card). Win-Win.
Best Sourdough - Theo’s Pizzeria
Sourdough is the food trend that’s sticking around. Popularised by the ubiquitous Franco Manca, sourdough pizza in London is plentiful and exceptionally tasty. Our favourite of the bunch is Theo’s, a South London based pizzeria that has crafted its dough recipe to create the perfect base. Topped with an impressive selection of seasonal, local ingredients (their spiced sausage is made in the pub across the road) these pizzas are everything you’ve been looking for.
Best Chicago Style - Japes
Anyone permanently frustrated by the lack of decent Chicago style deep dish pizza in London can kneel down and praise the pizza Gods for the arrival of Japes. Based in the heart of Soho, Japes bakes the legendary Chicago delicacy - more of a pie than a pizza, really - in essentially a cake pan, meaning it’s tall enough to hold more cheese than you could ever imagine. On top of the cheese are the toppings and then a tangy, slightly acidic tomato sauce, followed by more cheese and crowned with your choice of even more toppings. Dreamy.
Most Authentically Italian - Santore
What’s so great about Santore is that although it’s in a popular location, it truly is a hidden gem. Santore describes itself as a ‘comfortably rustic’ Italian restaurant, and they have it spot on. You really do feel like you’ve popped into a restaurant on a little side street in Naples, and everyone we know that has visited has said it is their new absolute favourite pizza. The ‘Pizza Santore’ is particularly excellent, and the selection of side dishes and wines perfectly combine to bring a small Italian paradise to the heart of London.
Best New York Style - Homeslice
One of the very good things about Homeslice is the size of their pizzas - they are huuuuge and can be bought either by the slice or as a whole 20-incher. The other very good thing about Homeslice is the variety of their toppings - everything from pomegranate to cauliflower shawarma to BBQ beef brisket to savoy cabbage and sumac yoghurt. Put these two very good things together and you get a very very good thing.
Best Local - Zia Lucia
Zia Lucia is your friendly neighbourhood pizzeria that is managing to get everything right. Named after the co-founder's Auntie Lucia (who is the very sweet looking lady from their logo) Zia Lucia specialises in replicating the warm, inviting atmosphere associated with Italian homes. Along with the all-round great selection of toppings for their pizzas, Zia Lucia offers a choice of four different bases (gluten free-ers rejoice!) which all hold their own, and coupled with the rustic decor and the open plan pizza ovens make for a thoroughly enjoyable, authentic dining experience.
Let us know which of these pizzas you’re desperate to try and don’t forget to share your reviews with us over on Eaten.