8 Places In America Chefs Chose For the Best Slice of Pizza & Only 1 Is On The Jersey Shore

No pizza debate among us mere mortals. Chefs from across the United States were asked where to get the best slice of pizza. There were 22 places in all on the list, and 8 of them are located between a few New York City Boroughs & Philly. Only 1 from the great state of New Jersey made the list.

Only 1? That seems a bit off. It wasn’t a debate about one style of pizza either. 

A bunch of professional chefs are more adept at explaining things like texture, taste, mouth feel…etc.

I mean, we regular pizza lovers aren’t stupid, we can easily detect good pizza, right?

I always say, “The best pizza is the pizza YOU love, no matter if it’s in New Jersey, New York, or Philadelphia. If you love it, it’s a good pizza.

As far as us regular folks go, we know what we like. We may not be culinary experts, but we are able to decipher whether a pizza sauce is sweet or savory.

 Does it have enough melty mozzarella cheese?  Does the crust pop or flop? Are the crust & sauce memorable?

Some of us prefer a foldable crispy New York style slice. There are people who love a crispy Sicilian style slice, and dare I say that I actually know people in the tri-state who love both Chicago & Detroit slices.

According to Eat This Not That, If you want an informed opinion about which pizza is best, just ask a professional chef. In the past, Eat This, Not That! has asked chefs to pinpoint the best pizza chains in the U.S. and also where to find the best regional styles. So naturally, the next step is to expand the pool nationwide, and see what slices chefs are turning to.

I get it, chefs have more expanded palates than a regular Jane like myself. But does that matter to a regular Jane or Joe? Maybe.

I thought this list might make for a good road trip for pizza lovers in New Jersey. Let’s take a look at the places between New York City Boroughs and Philadelphia that chefs chose as the best slices of pizza that they’ve encountered.

  • Umberto's Of New Hyde Park - 633 Jericho Turnpike, New Hyde Park, NY 11040

    My old stomping grounds! This is the place that was chosen by, Matthew Accarrino, chef of SPQR and Mattina in San Francisco.

    Eat This, Not That wrote: Specifically, he likes the Sicilian-style pizza at Umberto’s in New Hyde Park on Long Island. “Whenever I’m in New York, I stop by there on the way to the airport and grab a few slices for the flight home. You can’t beat it!”

  • L'Industrie Pizzeria - 254 S 2nd St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

    I love Brooklyn! It’s where my dad and uncles grew up. I recently heard about this place and how incredible the pizza is at this Williamsburg hot spot.

    According to Eat This, Not That, Fiore Tedesco the owner of Bambino in Austin Texas. raves about the margherita slice with burrata from L’Industrie “I have had a few moments in my life where my path of existence was forever altered by a slice of pizza,” says the chef. “No slice has left quite the impact on me in recent memory as the first slices I ate from Williamsburg, Brooklyn’s L’Industrie. The pizzas are a textural masterpiece.” Tedesco adds that these pizzas are “crispy and airy, and the clean bright wheatiness flavor of the dough is superb. The little glob of burrata on top of the slice really sings.


  • Roma Pizza - 1701 1st Ave., New York, NY 10128

    Pizza that saves lives?  Check out what this chef said to Eat This, Not That: Among his favorite pizzas in the world, the grandma slice from Roma Pizza in Manhattan is near and dear to Bobby Will, chef/owner of Thistle & Grouse in Portland, Maine. “That pizza saved my life on many occasions,” he explains. “Sometimes, as a chef, after working a 14-hour shift on a chaotic Mother’s Day, you forget to eat. It happened. So on the way home, I realized I had nothing to eat at 11:45 p.m. and was too exhausted to make something.” After Googling, he found that it was three blocks from his apartment, and open late. “The mozzarella compliments the robust sauce beautifully. The fresh basil torn on top, and drizzle of olive oil, makes me feel like I am in Italy. The crust is perfectly crisp on the outside and light and fluffy on the inside, kind of what I imagine clouds in heaven are like.”

    Roma Pizza - New York, NY - 1701 1st Ave - Hours, Menu, Order

    View the menu, hours, address, and photos for Roma Pizza in New York, NY. Order online for delivery or pickup on Slicelife.com

  • Totonno's - 1524 Neptune Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11224

    It’s off to Coney Island for this old school joint that serves coal fired pizza.  Dave Portnoy gave this pizza an 8.1 score.

    Here’s what a N.Y Chef told Eat This, Not That: It’s all about the coal-fired pizza for Michael Lomonaco, founding chef of New York’s Porter House Bar & Grill. And by that, he means it’s all about the coal-fired pizza at Totonno’s on Coney Island in Brooklyn, N.Y. “For over 120 years, they have crafted each pizza by hand using only fresh mozzarella, crushed tomatoes, and olive oil,” he says. “With just a few toppings to add, the emphasis is on perfection. And that’s what you get here.”

  • L&B Spumoni Gardens - 2725 86th St, Brooklyn, NY 11223

    This place has been around since 1939! Eat This, Not That writes: Back in the pizza epicenter of New York, Rich Parente likes to keep things old-school at L&B Spumoni Gardens. The chef and owner of Clock Tower Grill in Brewster, N.Y., Parente describes the classic Brooklyn haunt as having “hands down the most magical Sicilian pizza I have ever encountered. The squares are like cheesy, saucy clouds.”



  • Velma Restaurant - 584 Seneca Ave, Queens, NY 11385

    Off to Ridgewood, Queens we go to check out what chef Joseph Bliffen had to say to Eat This, Not That about this joint. And for one last reminder that New York is indeed the center of the pizza universe, Silver Apricot‘s executive chef Joseph Bliffen throws his vote behind Velma in Queens. Describing it as “a truly beautiful restaurant with classic but modern Italian fare,” Bliffen says you can get a plain New York-style slice at the bar, or opt for something…less plain. “I would recommend springing for the Vodka-roni, which is a thick square with vodka sauce and crispy pepperoni. The dough is crunchy and airy, the sauce has just the right amount of heat. What more could you ask for?”



  • Pizzeria Beddia - 1313 N Lee St, Philadelphia, PA 19125

    Only one Philadelphia pizza joint was on the original list of 22 places around the country and it was the favorite of a Massachusetts chef. It’s all about the quintessential Americana at Pizzeria Beddia in Philadelphia, home to Mario LaPosta’s favorite slice in the country. The chef, owner, and pizzaiolo of his own Da LaPosta in Newton, Mass., describes the pies at Beddia as “on another level,” and “crisp, light, soft, and full of flavor at the same time.” 


  • Maruca's Tomato Pies - 601 Ocean Terrace, Seaside Heights, NJ 08751

    If you grew up in New Jersey, then you know about this iconic stop that was born in 1950. The chef interviewed by Eat This, Not That has been coming here since he was a kid. Since he was a kid, Anthony Mangieri has been frequenting Maruca’s Tomato Pies in Seaside Heights, N.J. The founder of Genio Della Pizza, and chef/owner of New York’s Una Pizza Napoletana, Mangieri recalls visiting with his mom at least once a week. “Sometimes, when the weather was nice, she would let me skip school, and we’d get slices and lay on the beach and get tan,” he muses, fondly. 


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