Part of my planning for every trip includes seeking out a highly rated pizzeria in the area. Why? I love pizza. I really really love pizza.
This will be an ongoing blog where I'll highlight my recommended pizzerias. So be sure to check back periodically, as you follow me in my pursuit of pizza!
Brooklyn, New York - Grimaldi's
New York is known for pizza. There are so many restaurants to choose from. My research led me to Grimaldi's - Under the Brooklyn Bridge.
Located at 1 Front St. in Brooklyn, Grimaldi's is a landmark that has been serving coal brick-oven pizza since 1990. It is one of the most popular pizzerias in New York City and is known for it's long lines. Sometimes the lines are an hour long and that was the case when I visited. I decided to stick it out and yes it was worth the wait!
That's a photo of the line behind me when I was almost at the front. I don't have a photo of the pizza because I was so hungry after waiting in that long line, that i forgot to take one. That day, I fell in love with Grimaldi's. It was pie perfect!!
**Tip** - Bring cash, as this is a cash only establishment.
Washington, DC - &pizza
The original restaurant was opened on H Street in 2012 and since then, other locations have opened throughout the state and in Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia. The ordering format will remind you of a Chipotle, as you move down the line and customize your pizza the way you want. Also because they pride themselves on their ingredients - no MSG, no high fructose corn syrup, no GMO seeds, hormone-free dairy, organic dough and fresh produce.
Sao Paulo, Brazil - Veridiana
Veridiana gave me a pizza experience that really stands out in my memory. Apart from great tasting pizza, the service and ambiance stood out.
|Photo (c) https://www.flickr.com/photos/grahamstanley/ License: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/|
Their pizzas are VPN certified, which is given to qualifying pizzerias by the Naples based Verace Pizza Napoletano Association, or it's delegates. To qualify, a pizzeria must follow strict rules about ingredients, equipment, oven temperature, size/shape and more. Veridiana is located at Rua Dona Veridiana, 661 - Higienópolis. The restaurant has a cozy, rustic setting with soft music in the background and the service is outstanding. Our pizza was placed table side and served by our waiter. To my surprise, as soon as I was done with the first slice, the waiter appeared before I could reach for another and served me again. I never had to reach for another slice.
Las Vegas, Nevada - Grimaldi's
Here I was, doing my planning for Vegas and now needed to find a pizzeria. I went to TripAdvisor, like I usually do and selected Las Vegas restaurants. I then selected to sort by pizza and guess what pops up first? Grimaldi's!! I shouted out, "There's a Grimaldi's in Vegas!?" With the memory of Grimaldi's in Brooklyn fresh in my memory, I was now even more excited to visit Vegas.
You'll find Grimaldi's in either the Fashion Show Mall or the Pallazo, both on Las Vegas Blvd. There are also 3 other locations off the strip. The wait time in Vegas was nothing like Brooklyn; just the normal restaurant wait time.
New Orleans, Louisiana - Reginelli's
I had a lot of good food worth mentioning in New Orleans, but since this this blog post is about pizza, I'll only mention Reginelli's. Look out for a future blog post on my weekend in New Orleans.
I'll have to admit, I didn't plan for pizza in New Orleans. I stumbled upon Reginelli's because it was in walking distance of my hotel, Hyatt Regency. Let's just say, I'm glad I did. The pizza was very tasty and the service was good. I really liked the unique menu design, shown above. They're conveniently located in the downtown area at 930 Poydras St. and are open until midnight on the weekends.
La Fortuna, Costa Rica - Cafe Mediterraneo
Pizza in the rain forest? Sure, why not? Nothing like a good wood-fire oven pizza, with a view of the Arenal Volcano, after a long day of zip lining, river tubing and hot springs.
Immediately upon walking in I noticed the warm and relaxing atmosphere, which was exactly what I needed. I asked for a recommendation on a locally brewed beer and was given Pilsen. I really enjoyed it and it went well with the pizza, which was cooked to perfection. The service was very good. The owner even came out to greet each table one by one. You'll find Cafe Mediterraneo at 702, Provincia de Alajuela, La Fortuna.
Blaze Pizza - Davie, FL (Near Fort Lauderdale)This California-based up and coming pizzeria is worth a mention and a convenient stop if traveling from or to the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. It's only a 10 minute drive away, located at 2135 S. University Dr. There are other locations throughout Florida and across the US.
Blaze Pizza promises "exceptional quality at lightning fast speed." The pizzas are cooked in 180 seconds in an oven that reaches temperatures up to 900 degrees Fahrenheit. The ordering format reminded me of &pizza, shown above. The build-your-own-pizza style was the same. They also offer a gluten-free crust option.
Those are my pizzeria experiences that are worth mentioning from my travels. Remember to check by from time to time. I'll be adding more as I continue my travels.
Remember: You can't buy happiness, but you can buy pizza and that's kind of the same thing...