I wouldn’t want my first appearance as a Boston Week writer to ruffle too many feathers, but TW – this post contains potentially disturbing content for some readers…
Pizza itself can be a controversial topic. Thin crust? Coal fired? Greek? Italian? Deep dish? … pineapple? Below you’ll find my list of Top 5 pizzas in the Boston area, and you’ll know where I stand on one of the most riveting and prevalent debates of our time.
- Honey Bacon Bianca – Stoked Pizza (Brookline)
Consuming a Stoked pizza is essentially a religious experience. One I frequently had while living in Brighton for a few years. It is completely deserving as the number one spot on my list, and while they have a full selection of coal fired pizza’s to choose from that make it my top spot; their ambience, music choices, and drink selections add even more to the experience should you be lucky enough to grab at table. The Honey Bacon Bianca is a PERFECT blend of melted cheeses, crispy hot bacon (and I mean the good kind you find at those dive-y diners that only take cash), perfectly cooked green peppers, and finally, Mikes Honey Hot. Literally a masterpiece of flavors combined on soft dough perfectly cooked in coal fired oven. I cannot stress enough the explosion your taste buds will have eating this pizza. I don’t know what else to say other than, it is perfect. Plus, you get little homemade rice cakes as a complimentary dessert to top off a divine culinary experience.
- Fresh Pineapple, Bacon, Hot Honey – OTTO (Southie)
Here we go… all I have to say is, don’t knock it till you try it. I will die on the hill that pineapple belongs on pizza, and I genuinely think you would too after having this absolute treasure from OTTO. As an honorary “Mainer”, I couldn’t have been happier when OTTO, originally a Portland based joint, popped up walking distance from my apartment in Southie. What was once a treat after spending the weekends in Portland, is now my go to “I don’t want to cook dinner let’s get takeout and treat ourselves” meal – and yes, I get a whole pie to myself. Similar to Stoked, this pizza features crispy bacon, and honey hot sauce, and this time, drizzled on top of grilled pineapple. If you like super thin, crunchy crust, any pizza from the Portland made joint will not disappoint, but I cannot urge you enough to put aside your bias, take one bite of warm pineapple pizza and take the leap into the dark side.
- Cheese – Regina Pizzeria (North End)
I don’t have much to say about Regina Pizzeria. It speaks for itself. It is iconic, one of Boston’s best. Whether you’re just getting one massive slice, or whole cheese pizza, you will always be coming back for more. You haven’t been to Boston if you haven’t had Regina. PSA – their Allston location has closed as of 2020 (SAD!).
- Pepperoni – Bardo’s Pizza Bar at Castle Island Brewing Company (Southie)
Bar Pizza at its finest. Whoever came up with this collaboration when deciding to open the Brewery’s second location deserves a RAISE. If I remember the story correctly, Bardo’s was (pre-pandemic) a catering company, who had to make a decision on where to take their business during hard times. Somehow it was decided they would partner up with Castle Island Brewing and the rest is history. While the beer is good (that says a lot, since beer is not usually my choice – my go to is the “White”), the pizza is what keeps me coming back for more and more, and more. The only thing that makes the loaded greasy pepperoni pizza even better is when its dipped in Bardo’s pickle ranch. YUP you heard me, pickle ranch. Unbelievable combination, especially when you get down to their perfectly crispy on the outside soft on the inside crust, for that final ranch dunk. If you haven’t been here yet, their outdoor space just opened up, so get your butt over there!
- Meatball – Brick and Beam (Quincy)
Is there anything better than mounds of ricotta on a pizza? Warm, melted, sweet ricotta – I love you. Brick and Beam isn’t somewhere I frequent often. Mostly, it’s a good spot to meet my god mother for dinner (shout out Mary Ellen). But what did have me wanting to come back again after my first meal there, is this meatball pizza. Caramelized Onions, Meatballs, Basil, Marinara Sauce, and Ricotta, it was nothing short of excellence. That flavor combination is the best when you’re looking to branch out from the standard cheese or pepperoni, it satisfies the need to step outside the box, but stays within the realm of safety.
SO, hopefully you go and enjoy checking out some of my favs – and please, PLEASE, just try the damn pineapple pizza.