8 New Must-Try Philly Pizzas

By Danya Henninger  |  September 23, 2013
Credit: Danya Henninger

While there are several new pie-slingers to hit up in Philadelphia proper, the suburbs have seen a surprising boom in the pizzeria category lately, and we surveyed them all. From Neapolitan and Roman to Mexican and plain old American, here are eight new pizzas you really have to try.

  • Credit: Danya Henninger

    Roman Pizza of the Day at High Street on Market

    Toppings on the long, oblong Roman pizza of the day at Eli Kulp and Ellen Yin’s revamp of Old City’s Fork:etc change often, but there’s little chance of going wrong. A recent version saw cheese and tomato sauce baked on to Alex Bois' dough, which was then topped with pesto, whole anchovies and bits of bright parsley. Whatever's on top, each crispy rectangle will fill your mouth with flavor ($4).

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    Margherita at Peppercorn

    Before he took over the kitchen at this gorgeous Wayne newcomer, chef David Murray had quite a bit of pizza experience (in high end restaurants and at his own New Jersey pizzerias). Here, he's tweaked the pies that come out of the wood-fired oven to fit the clientele - "They're a bit larger than traditional Neapolitan pies, because Americans like to eat!" he says - and tosses fresh tomato slices on top of the Margherita, because that's how the previous occupant (Georges') used to do it. It works ($12; 610-964-2588).

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    Crudo at Pizzeria Vetri

    You’ve got to get at least two Neapolitan pies when you hit up Marc Vetri’s new joint on Callowhill, so definitely make one of them this simple but inspired creation. After bufala mozzarella and Parmesan melt atop the puffing and crisping crust, thin slivers of proscuitto are laid over the top. Good luck making the pie last longer than the two minutes it took to bake ($18; 215-600-2629).

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    Wild Mushroom at Avero Craft Pizzeria

    At this new Wayne Italian (right next to the Whole Foods) from partners Scott Morrison and Vince Schiavone, you can’t miss the copper-clad pizza oven standing guard at the front of the dining room. What emerges from the huge mouth is worthy of attention too, with dough that stands up to just about any you'll find in the city proper. With mushrooms delivered fresh from Kennett Square, this white pie - with ricotta, thyme and a farm egg on top - is a don't-miss option ($16.75; 484-580-6455).

  • Pesto at Kermit’s Bake Shoppe

    With crusts from pastry chef Chad Durkin and toppings from savory chef Brian Lofink, you’re bound to get a good slice at this new counter-service pizzeria-bakery on the west edge of Washington Avenue. The pair does not disappoint in this white pie that’s layered with almond-basil pesto, roasted red peppers, olives and garlic-sautéed spinach ($3/$18; 267-639-4267).

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    Pineapple Duck Flatbread at Union Taco

    Pizza from a taco shop? Yes, and after you try it, you won’t question it again. Nick Farina is planning several flatbreads for his forthcoming Girard Avenue taco shop, and the sneak preview we got at Verdad makes us hope for an on-time launch (it's due to open early October). Pastrami-spiced duck is the perfect match for grilled pineapple, and the pomegranate seeds and pine nuts sprinkled on top add crunch and pop.

  • Special Red at Stella Rossa Ristorante

    It’s a good thing Dave Magrogan is planning a Center City outpost of this new Downington Italian (it will open soon in the former Square Peg), because the pizza is too good for city dwellers to miss out on. A prime example is this meat-loaded pie, where sausage, pepperoni and meatballs are saved from overwhelming the palate by fresh chopped tomatoes and bright-red sauce (610-269-6000).

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    Chicken Artichoke Flatbread at Carmel Wine Bar

    Florida may not be known for pizza, but flatbread is another story, and the half-cracker, half-bread crusts at the first out-of-state location for this Tampa-based restaurant group - on the Main Line in Wayne - are worth ordering. All four versions on the menu are winners, but our surprise favorite is this one, which sees house-candied lemon zest sprinkled atop grilled chicken, artichokes, cheese and plenty of lightly dressed arugula ($8.69; 484-580-6725).