A (Very) Biased Review of the Las Vegas Pizza Scene.
Born and raised on Gino’s from my local strip mall, this topic is near and dear to my stomach. And having now traveled the country, and the world, I have realized that no one will ever make pizza the way Gino did. Some can’t even serve it right. No pizza by the slice? What the heck is up with that? Las Vegas has developed some sense though, with a long list of restaurants that have earned the right by me to be called pizza joints.
Rocco’s New York Italian Deli – Rocco’s makes me feel like I am back home. The pizza menu is simple the way it should be. Small or large thin crust pizza, and a choice of toppings that does not include truffles or foie gras. White pizza, Sicilian style and of course… Pizza by the slice. This is all you really need.
Grimaldi’s Pizzeria – This Brooklyn based pizza joint has helped to raise the bar in Vegas. Being inside of the plush Palazzo hotel they of course lose a little of the hometown feeling, but the coal-fired pizza has not lost any of its appeal.
Naked City Pizza—Inside of Moondoggie’s Bar, Naked City Pizza is the almost New York style, if you consider Buffalo to be part of the state. It’s tasty though with a thicker crust and your usual array of toppings. 2 bucks got me just what I wanted, 1 slice, as it should be.
800 Degrees – With a few spots in Vegas to choose from, and their menu is a bit fancy schmancy for my simple mind, but the wood fired pizza is delish, especially personal created ones. That’s one way around that whole by the slice dilemma.
Broadway Pizzeria – I know, I keep on coming back to New York. But when you see that two guys named Anthony and Mario are making it, you know it has to be good. Which it was, and so were the garlic knots and cannoli I had with it. Now that’s a full-fledged pizza joint.
Amore Taste of Chicago –I like windy city pizza too, and these guys do a great job of it. I went for the Italian crafted deep dish variety whose crust I am ashamed to admit was better than Gino’s. This was not a pick up and go type pizza, but rather a sit down with fork and knife style. Which was okay, change is good.
Wolfgang Puck Pizzeria and Cucina – I wasn’t sure about this one getting that joint title, as it is a bit fancy for my normal taste. But if we are just talking yummy factor, Puck nails it. His ingredients are all fresh as well as the toppings. There was some stuff on that menu that I couldn’t pronounce, but I found mushroom, so we were good to go.
California Pizza Kitchen –Now I don’t mean to hurt feelings here, but my first forays into the California pizza world a few years back did not go over well. To the point where I shamefully had to resort to delivery This joint has redeemed the state for me with a delicious crust, either thick or thin and a savory sauce. I had to search hard to find a topping (uh… avocado on a pizza?) that wasn’t healthy, but my waistline was grateful for that.
Aurelio’s Pizza –Another Chicago staple, this chain takes its Family Pizzeria logo very seriously. There menu is full of other Italian delights besides their famous thin crust pizza, like antipasto salads and toasted ravioli. The only thing missing really was the by the slice price.
Dom DeMarco’s Pizzeria and Bar – You might remember seeing this one on the news a couple of years back when Mr. Obama (yes, the president) ordered up some pies and cannolis for his staff. He was right to choose the then new DeMarco’s restaurant which is run by the same guy who runs Di Fara’s out in Brooklyn. What Obama and company got was the real deal, authentic NY pizza and a mouth watering dessert.
My journey into the Vegas pizza world was a successful one. I started off thinking that it would be horrendous (Nevada does border California) but if my hips and thighs are any indication, I found some damn good pizza joints there. Not all are inside the big hotels, so you may have to ask for directions, or just do like I did and use the Vegaster app to get you there. #Vegaster