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20 Praiseworthy Pizzas

Aug 29, 2017 03:08PM ● Published by Morgan Cásarez

Lombardi’s—America’s first pizzeria—opened its doors in New York City’s Little Italy in 1905. More than a century later, the family-owned business is still serving up the Margherita that put it on the map. Whole-milk mozzarella, tomato sauce, grated Romano and fresh basil atop a thin, coal-baked crust continue to attract visitors from all over the world. The Big Apple will forever lay claim to the nation’s oldest pizzeria, but that certainly doesn’t make California slices any less celebrated. In fact, some of the state’s most mouthwatering pies are right here in our own backyard. Whether you crave wood-fired, deep dish, vegetarian, classic or something slightly unconventional, you’re sure to find a new favorite among Style’s list of the very best pizzas. In no particular order


Chicago Fire

500 North Sunrise Avenue, Roseville, 916-771-2020


 ORDER THIS 

*The Great Chicago Fire: Deep-dish crust, hot Italian sausage, Italian beef, giardiniera peppers, habanero sauce drizzle; $12.50-$29.95*

Gluten-free crust available


 IN THE KNOW 

Happy Hour runs Monday-Friday from 3-6 p.m. and includes $3 pizza by the slice. Save even more money by signing up for “Chicago Fire Square Points.” It’s free to join, and every $1 spent=1 point earned. Register online at chicagofire.com/loyalty to receive: 

• Free deep-dish delight on your birthday

• Free specialty pizza for every 500 points earned

• Free corkage


TOP IT OFF

A 2016 Harris Poll asked adults in the U.S. to name their favorite and least favorite pizza toppings. Did yours make the list? 

Favorite

1. Pepperoni

2. Sausage

3. Mushrooms

4. Cheese/Plain

5. Onions

6. Olives

7. Bacon 

8. Tie: Ham/Canadian Bacon & Pineapple

10. Peppers/Sweet Peppers


Least Favorite 

1. Anchovies

2. Mushrooms

3. Pineapple

4. Onions

5. Olives

6. Pepperoni

7. Peppers/Sweet Peppers

8. Sausage

9. Meat 

10. Cheese/Plain



 Sienna

1480 Eureka Road, Roseville, 916-771-4700


 ORDER THIS 

Wild Mushroom & Goat Cheese: Wood-stone flatbread with balsamic reduction, shallot purée, mushrooms, creamy goat cheese, roasted leeks; $14


 IN THE KNOW 

Swing by between 3-7 p.m., seven days a week, and try the offering above for $9 during Happy Hour.


Steve’s Pizza

3941 Park Drive, Suite 100, El Dorado Hills, 916-939-2100


 ORDER THIS 

*Mediterranean Gourmet: House-made Steve’s sauce, spinach, Greek peppers, red onions, black olives, feta, tomatoes, oregano, ; $7.99-$28.99


 IN THE KNOW 

The Steve’s Pizza VIP Club delivers exclusive offers, specials, promotions and events straight to your inbox (stevespizza.com/join-our-vip-club). They also offer delivery and 14 (constantly rotating) taps in addition to a “bucket of 5 bottles” (mixed and matched beers) for $13. 


Skipolini’s Pizza

191 Blue Ravine Road, Folsom, 916-355-8555


 ORDER THIS 

*Vettie’s Gluten & Lactose Free: Homemade gluten-free pizza crust, extra virgin olive, balsamic vinegar, lactose-free rice cheese, spinach, chicken, red and yellow peppers, red onions, whole roasted garlic cloves, sun-dried tomatoes; $16


 IN THE KNOW 

Let the kids be chef for a day with Skippolini’s Junior Chef Pizza. For $8.95 (plus $.50 per topping), they’ll love building their own pepperoni or cheese pizza right at the dinner table. What’s more, they have an outdoor play structure, making it the ultimate pizza party for all ages!


 Visconti’s Ristorante

2700 East Bidwell Street, Suite 700, Folsom, 916-983-5181


 ORDER THIS 

Combo: Pepperoni, salami, Italian sausage, linguica, mushrooms, bell peppers, onions, olives; $12-$24 


 IN THE KNOW 

Order a “Bambino” pizza for the little ones (an eight-inch pie with toppings of your choice); thin and thick crust is available. Check out the Style Savings Guide for 15-percent off to-go orders. 


Bella Familia Wood Fired Pizza Food Truck

Rocklin, 916-759-4566


ORDER THIS 

The Ring of Fire: Ground tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, all-beef pepperoni, green peppers, homemade habanero ricotta; $12-$13


 IN THE KNOW 

They cater weddings and private parties, and this month can be found at the Old Town Auburn Farmers’ Market every Saturday (8 a.m.-noon), Crooked Lane Brewery on September 1 and 7 (4-8 p.m.), Moonraker Brewing Company on September 8 and 28 (4-8 p.m.), and “Off the Grid Food Truck Lunch” at the Rancho Cordova City Hall on September 21 (11 a.m.-2 p.m.).


RECORD-BREAKING PIES

These Guinness World Record holders turned pie-in-the-sky dreams into reality!

— 

More than 50 bakers gathered in Rome this summer to make the most pizzas ever in just one hour. The result? Seven ovens produced a staggering 1,500 pies.

— 

 In April, New York’s Industry Kitchen started serving up the world’s most expensive commercially available pizza. The $2,700 price tag (that’s before tax and tip) on the aptly named “24K” gets you a wood-fired delicacy topped with Stilton cheese, foie gras, French truffles, 24K gold leaves, and not one, but two different types of caviar!

Scott Wiener of New York holds the record for largest collection of pizza boxes. He has 1,300 different boxes stashed in the closets of his Brooklyn apartment.

Kelvin Medina of the Philippines inhaled a 12-inch pizza in just 23.62 seconds on April 12, 2015. 

The Giant Sicilian at Big Mama’s & Papa’s Pizzeria in Los Angeles is the largest deliverable pizza in the world. The 54” x 54” behemoth feeds 50-70 people and will set you back just $249 for a cheese pie. Each additional topping is $19.99. 

Pizzas 4 Patriots is an Illinois-based nonprofit dedicated to sending a slice of home to active service members. On July 4, 2012, they made the world’s largest delivery, sending 30,000, 12-inch pizzas to troops in Afghanistan with the help of DHL.

Joe Carlucci holds the title for “Highest Pizza Toss”—in April 2006, he sent 20 ounces of dough flying just over two stories high at the Mall of America in Minneapolis.


 Sauce’d Cocktail House

879 Embarcadero Drive, El Dorado Hills, 916-933-3729


 ORDER THIS 

Red’s Chili Cheese: Sauce’d house-made chili, cheddar/jack cheese mix, tomatoes, black olives, feta, cherry peppers; $14.95-$21.95


 IN THE KNOW 

Try the “Sunday Friends Pizza Party” and get two large wood-fired pizzas for $30. They also offer party delivery and pizza-by-the-slice for $4.50 during Happy Hour (Monday-Friday from 4:30-7 p.m.). 


Chicago’s Pizza With A Twist

1750 Prairie City Road, Suite 140, Folsom, 916-970-9900


 ORDER THIS 

*Tandoori Veggie Pizza: Tandoori sauce, mushrooms, red onions, tomatoes, garlic, ginger, cilantro, green chilies and jalapeños (on request); $11.99-$23.99


 IN THE KNOW 

Don’t miss their lunch buffet! Served Monday-Friday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., fill up on pizza (both traditional and authentic Indian offerings) and salad. They also offer delivery, vegan cheese and halal meat.


 Wally’s Pizza Bar

4079 Cameron Park Drive, Cameron Park, 530-677-5205


 ORDER THIS 

*Thai Curry Chicken: Sweet curry sauce, roasted chicken, yellow bell peppers, tomatoes, red onions, mascarpone, lime, basil, cilantro; $13-$26


 IN THE KNOW 

If you like the heat, “ask for it spicy!” Weekly events include Acoustic Tuesday from 7-10 p.m. and Music Trivia Wednesday from 7-11 p.m.; Happy Hour is from 3-6 p.m. and 9 p.m.-close Monday-Friday and includes $4, $5 and $7 cocktails, pints, wines and small bites.


 Dominick’s NY Pizza and Deli

187 Blue Ravine Road, Folsom, 916-351-0900


 ORDER THIS 

Pizza Bianca: New York-style thin crust, olive oil, garlic, herbs, ricotta, mozzarella cheese (no tomato sauce); $17.99-$22.99


 IN THE KNOW 

Order your pie half-baked and finish cooking it at home. Check out the Style Savings Guide for $5 off $25 or more (coupon valid every day after 4 p.m. on pizza and entrées). 



Pete’s Restaurant and Brewhouse

2023 Vine Street, Suite 100, El Dorado Hills, 916-933-3400; 6608 Folsom-Auburn Road, Folsom, 916-988-8812


 ORDER THIS 

*The Purist: Olive oil, garlic, tomatoes, Italian seasoning, mozzarella, feta, Parmesan cheese (no tomato sauce); $15.99-$29.92 


 IN THE KNOW 

In El Dorado Hills, take 50-percent off all pizzas during “Monday Madness” (excludes personal, gluten-free and kids’ pizzas) and enjoy $4 pints of select craft beer. From Monday-Friday (8 p.m.-close) and Saturday-Sunday (9 p.m.-close), they host a “Late-Night” Happy Hour where you can get 50-percent off a small or medium one-topping pizza. In Folsom, kids eat free on Sundays from the kids’ menu (with purchase of an adult entrée); on Mondays, take 50-percent off a medium pizza or larger (dine in) or 30-percent off for takeout, and enjoy all day Happy Hour drinks; on “Wine Wednesdays,” house wine is $4 and premium bottles are half off.


PEA PESTO PIZZA WITH RICOTTA, SHAVED ASPARAGUS AND BASIL

Recipe and photos submitted by Bella Karragiannidis of ful-filled.com; @ful.filled

FOR THE PEA PESTO:

  • 16 oz. (1 lb.) fresh peas (or thawed if using frozen)
  • 1/4 cup roasted unsalted pistachios, shelled
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
  • 1 clove of garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan (or omit to make dairy-free)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


Begin by blanching the peas in boiling water for 2 minutes and then move them to an ice bath to chill. Remove the peas from the water once chilled. Add the chilled peas, mint, olive oil, lemon zest and Parmesan (if omitting Parmesan add a generous pinch of salt). Pulse in a food processor until ingredients are well combined, but not smooth—you want the pesto to have a bit of texture. Taste the pesto for seasoning; add salt to taste as necessary. Cover and chill in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve. Pea pesto will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.


FOR THE PIZZA:

  • 16 oz. (1 lb.) pizza dough + flour for dusting
  • Pea pesto (see above)
  • 16 oz. ricotta cheese
  • 1 bunch of asparagus, shaved and chilled in an ice bath
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Lemon zest
  • Red crushed pepper
  • Fresh basil


Preheat oven to 500°F (if you have a pizza stone, preheat the oven with the pizza stone in the top 1/3 of the oven). Shape pizza dough into 1 large round or 2 small rounds, flouring your surface as needed to keep the dough from sticking. Transfer shaped dough to a sheet of parchment paper. Spread dough with pea pesto, leaving about 1 1/2 inch of dough at the edges bare. Dollop ricotta over the top of the pesto. Place pizza with parchment paper on top of a pizza peel and slide it into the oven onto the pizza stone (if not using a pizza stone, place pizza with parchment onto a baking sheet). Bake pizza for 7-10 minutes until crust is golden and bubbly. Remove pizza from the oven and top with shaved asparagus (drain asparagus from the ice water first) followed by a drizzle of olive oil, Parmesan, chili flakes, lemon zest and fresh basil. Slice and serve.


Ful-filled was created by Bella and her husband who live in Roseville. They’re firm believers that changing the current culture of food and health begins in the kitchen. For more info, visit ful-filled.com or follow her on Instagram at @ful.filled.


Ciro’s Pizza Café

241 Blue Ravine Road, Folsom, 916-983-5757


 ORDER THIS 

Mountain Top: Pepperoni, smoked ham, black olives, mushrooms, salami, red onions, sausage, tomatoes, bell peppers, fresh garlic, extra cheese; $15.99-$46.99


 IN THE KNOW 

Sign up for “Ciro’s Loyalty” (in store or online) to rack up rewards and get free food. Delivery and various catering packages at multiple price points are available. Crust options include original, Neapolitan thin, super thin, extra thick and deep dish. 


Pizzeria Classico

702 Sutter Street, Suite A, Folsom, 916-351-1430


 ORDER THIS 

Pestatoes: Double-crust stuffed with spinach, pesto sauce, roasted potatoes, red onion, feta; $17.50-$31.50


 IN THE KNOW 

Their Garlic Chips are notorious for a reason; order them as an appetizer, and thank us later. Lunch specials are served Monday-Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and run the gamut from a three-topping calzone for $12.50 to a two-topping pie for $11.50—both served with a side house or Caesar salad. 


Pronto’s New York Pizzeria

299 Iron Point Road, Folsom, 916-608-0720


 ORDER THIS 

Marinara: Shrimp, crab meat, mushrooms, garlic, secret ingredient; $17.99-$22.99


 IN THE KNOW 

For those craving a taste of true New York-style pizza, get into Pronto’s pronto. Owners Diane and Joe Benevento hail from the East Coast and inherited family recipes that are guaranteed to please. Daily specials include two slices and a soda; or one slice, a salad and a soda for $6. 


Strings Italian-Café

25035 Blue Ravine Road, Folsom, 916-983-8815


 ORDER THIS 

Hawaiian: New York-style thin crust, Canadian bacon, pineapple, green onions, tomatoes; $13.50-$24


 IN THE KNOW 

The “Takeout Family Meal Deal” serves four or more and allows you to mix and match your choice of pasta, sauce and salad (plus bread!) for just $25.99. Check out the Style Savings Guide for 25-percent off your total bill.


Prohibition Wine Lounge

2776 East Bidwell Street, Suite 500, Folsom, 916-293-9070


 ORDER THIS 

Red Sauce: Hand-crushed San Marzano tomatoes, fresh mozzarella; $12


 IN THE KNOW 

Swing by on Mondays all day, or between 3-6 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday for $3 off their pizzas and other “shareable” dishes; pair it with one of their “Wine Flights” for a romantic date night.


Whole Foods Market

270 Palladio Parkway, Folsom, 916-984-8500


 ORDER THIS 

The Not So BLT: Alfredo sauce, shredded chicken, bacon, roasted corn, mozzarella, cilantro; $17.99


 IN THE KNOW 

Don’t miss “Pizza Wednesdays,” where you can score a large pepperoni or cheese pie for $9.99. They also offer two slices for $7, seven days a week.


Folsom Pizza and Kabob

6693 Folsom-Auburn Road, Folsom, 916-987-1388


 ORDER THIS 

Buffalo Chicken: White garlic ranch sauce, chicken, turkey bacon, onions; $16.99


 IN THE KNOW 

Dough is made fresh daily in the restaurant, and all meats are halal.


 Selland’s Market-Café

4370 Town Center Boulevard, Suite 120, El Dorado Hills, 916-932-5025


 ORDER THIS 

*The Owen: Béchamel, mac & cheese, mozzarella, jalapeños, bacon, Parmesan; $15.50 


 IN THE KNOW 

Join the free “Selland’s Friend of the Family Rewards Program” and earn one point per dollar spent at any Selland Family restaurant; 600 points earns you a free Market-Café pizza. 

 

 Sacramento Pizza Company

2700 East Bidwell Street, Suite 500, Folsom, 916-673-9754


 ORDER THIS 

*Mouth On Fire: House marinara, ghost pepper cheese, red pepper, spicy pepperoni, spicy sausage, jalapeño, pepperoncini; $8.49

*Gluten-free crust available


 IN THE KNOW 

Stop by on September 10 with your kiddos at 6 p.m. for “Character Dining with Rapunzel,” featuring a sing-along story time, children’s activities, and a photo op—courtesy of The Fairy Godmother Events. Check out the Style Savings Guide for coupons! 


THE ORIGIN OF PIZZA

Kids ask the darndest things, but when it comes to “Where does pizza come from?” it’s easy to assume you know the answer. According to wonderopolis.org, an educational resource created by the National Center for Families Learning, the truth depends on a number of factors. For starters, how do we define pizza? The preparation of oven-cooked flatbreads dates back to ancient times in the Middle East, while ancient Greeks and Romans popularized the use of toppings like olive oil and spices. The invention of pizza as we know it today—a combination of tomato sauce, cheese and toppings—is attributed to Raffaele Esposito of Naples, although historians have noted street vendors were selling flatbreads with toppings years prior to his creation of the Margherita in 1889. It was that year when Esporito famously prepared a pizza with fresh tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and basil for King Umberto I and Queen—you guessed it (!)—Margherita of Italy.


Chicago Fire and Wally’s Pizza Bar photo by Aaron Roseli. Most expensive pizza photo courtesy of Industry Kitchen. Giant Sicilian photo courtesy of Big Mama’s and Papa’s Pizzeria. Queen Margherita-Portrait by Henri Le Lieure, Rome. All other photos by Dante Fontana © Style Media Group

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