Tucked in with a smoke shop, a car stereo dealer, and a vendor of coins and firearms, Campania is pumping out top 10 list-caliber pies and may just be the best-kept pizza secret in town. For now.
'Georgia' on Serious Eats
Last time, internet pizza legend (and creator of the most famous pizza recipe in the world) Jeff Varasano talked about the challenges of opening a pizzeria and why he's stayed out of the spotlight the last few years. Today, he goes in depth on the power of a brand like Chic-Fil-A, the challenge of finding great employees, and why having great pizza doesn't always matter.
Jeff Varasano's pizza recipe went viral in the mid-2000's, and he opened up his own shop in Atlanta a few years later to critical acclaim. Then he went quiet...and we decided to find out why. Varasano had a very candid chat with us about his victories, his setbacks, his big plans coming down the pipe, and his newest location: the airport in Atlanta. If you ever wanted to open a pizzeria (or any a business), this is must-read stuff.
"Pizza is a social food. In this country, you call a friend and say, 'Let's go get a drink.' In Italy, we say, 'Let's get a pizza.'" Every single thing I ate at Don Antonio by Starita was well worth sharing with someone you care about. MY favorite pizza in Atlanta? I think I just found it.
There's a time and a place for the pizza-as-artform-with-a-capital-A gourmet pizza shrines out there... but sometimes you just want to chill on your couch with a sloppy, gooey, greasy, holy-crap-this-is-why-I-fell-in-love-with-pizza-when-I-was-7 kind of pie. And LaBella's does that better than most.
Don't get me wrong; I like a little kick, but this was a steel-toed boot being jammed straight up my taste buds. When I can still residually taste a pizza six hours and three tooth-brushings later, it's "too much."Suffice it to say, Slice & Pint is still—almost four months in—definitely a work in progress.
There's a cheese pizza that's delicious in its simplicity, but others showcase some spectacular and cheffy toppings. Ron Eyester may be "The Angry Chef," but what he's doing at Timone's should make pizza fanatics quite happy.
S&J's Woodfired Pizza may not be the easiest pie shop to find in Atlanta (that's about to change...), but what they're pulling out of their eye-catching little red trailer makes it well worth the extra effort.
Paizano's Italian Bistro may not serve destination pizza, but if I lived in the downtown Norcross area, I could do a lot worse for go-to NY-style, Neapolitan, and Sicilian pies.
Who knew Woodstock, Georgia was a legit pizza destination town? The tiny hamlet is on the extreme edge of what can just barely be called the metro Atlanta area: a full thirty miles from Centennial Olympic Park and admittedly way off the beaten path for most Atlanta pizza fanatics. True, this northwestern 'burb is on serious Slice'rs' radar screens thanks to the world-class pies at Vingenzo's. But about 1,000 feet away, FireStone Wood Fired Pizza & Grill is doing the California-style pie thing with similarly stellar results
What's Italian for "sad?" At Cibo e Beve, I ordered a topping as unique as duck and paid 17 bucks for the privilege, but came away with an impression that was no more memorable than "a rich white pie that mainly tastes like smoke."
No. 246 may not be a "pizza place" per se, but the under-the-radar pies certainly deserve mention when you're talking about the city's finest.
A recent newspaper article singled out Westside Pizzeria as "the kind of place you sort of hate to tell people about." For me, it was definitely a tale of two pies.
I believe Ammazza will find itself on the shortlist of the city's top pizza joints, but the initial oohs and aahs at multi-colored flecks sprinkled over a 12-inch pie won't disguise the fact that this is, simply, a kids' cheese pizza with edible sparkles.
Tartufo Pizzeria is a more than worthy addition to the city's ever-expanding list of upscale pie shops... and, I daresay, better than most.
The hush-hush speakeasy behind the secret bookcase door gets all the press, but don't make the mistake of letting the cloak-and-dagger watering hole outshine the simply stellar pizzas you have to walk past to get there.
NYPE's pizzas did remind me of the street slices I've had in Manhattan... although I don't recall those as having been quite so doughy and dense. It's not bad, per se, just different. Be warned.
STG Trattoria may be the new kid on the block when it comes to fancypants pies, but thanks to a warm sourdough crust that practically melted in my mouth, they've already established themselves in my book as being among the very best.
It's easy to forget about Savage Pizza. But like the comic book superheroes that adorn every square foot of the place, Savage has stayed true to its mission and is still fighting the good fight after all these years.
After three years in business, Atlanta's Antico Pizza Napoletana is still one of the city's best places to get Neapolitan pizza with a few caveats.