Robin Spann Dishes on the 5 Best Pizza Places in NYC

Robin Spann

September 29, 2021

Robin Spann Dishes on the 5 Best Pizza Places in NYC

If you want to talk pizza, be prepared for a food fight.


No other dish has such passionate supporters. And there’s plenty to debate about. Fans argue over anything from crust thickness to sauce texture. Aficiona-doughs even bicker incessantly over pineapple’s place on a pie. There are all kinds of dividing lines around these tasty circles.


However, location is the fiercest battle line drawn. Many regions boast their pizza reigns supreme, but, in New York City, it’s personal. When it comes to who has the best slice, the city keeps its heart on its sleeve. In fact, pizza was born right in the five boroughs back in 1905. Just like that sauce stain on the collar, NYC wears this distinction as a badge of honor.


Robin Spann is crossing enemy lines. Although he resides in Chicago, the consummate traveler loves all things NYC. As a routine visitor to the city, he knows that finding the “best” pizza is subjective.


Still, Robin Spann serves up five of his favorite places to grab a slice… or two.


Joe’s Pizza

It doesn’t get any more “New York” than Joe’s Pizza. Located in Greenwich Village since 1975, the neighborhood institution provides a classic, no-frills slice. It’s even run by its original owner. Offering fast service and reasonable pricing, Joe’s Pizza has perfected the recipe for simple, traditional pizza. Beloved by virtually every local, it’s a must try.



Nestled in Brooklyn, Lucali is a cozy restaurant with big flavors. The three-cheese blend, with imported mozzarella, and fresh basil are the main draws. The place constantly experiences long lines, making it impossible to make a reservation. Pro tip: Robin Spann recommends showing up right at 5 p.m., adding your name to the list, and getting drinks nearby until your name is called.


Louie & Ernie’s Pizza

A pair of brothers started this pizzeria in 1947. After migrating north in 1959, Louie & Ernie’s Pizza now operates out of a charming, renovated house in the Bronx. Although it doesn’t deviate much, the restaurant does offer some fresh takes without swaying too far from tradition.


Totonno Pizzeria Napolitana

Being on the boardwalk seems like the ideal time for a hot dog, but you’re sure to crave this pizza instead. Totonno Pizzeria Napolitana has been serving up pies from the same, small one-room building on Coney Island for over 90 years. The recipe has remained unchanged as well. Top ingredients cooked in a coal-burning oven have been on the menu for almost a century.


Patsy’s Pizza

Like the previous entry on this list, Patsy’s operates one of NYC’s oldest coal-fired pizzerias. However, it’s also one of the only coal-oven joints in the entire city that sells by the slice. Although the establishment has since been franchised into several locations, Robin Spann encourages you to go to the original in Harlem.