Grandlife guide


back to list

Welcome to New York City, a hotly debated pizza town famed for those massive foldable slices and tasty artisanal pies. From small storefronts to classic institutions to newcomers with wood-oven delights, here, our guide to the best downtown spots.


Since 1975, this tiny, no-frills West Village pizza joint helmed by father and son duo Joe Sr. and Joe Jr. respectively, has been doling out slices to hungry patrons and celebs (oh hey, there’s Leo!). Order from simple thin-crusted delights topped with bold, tangy red sauce, melted mozzarella cheese, and assorted meats. Because tables are scarce, most folks eat their snack standing up.

7 Carmine St, New York, NY 10014; T. (212) 366-1182

Pasquale Jones

The latest ’70s funk soundtrack meets toothsome, wood-oven Neapolitan delights inside chef Ryan Hardy’s NoLita space. “The clam pie is a combination of two of my favorite things—broccoli rabe and clams,” says Hardy. “Combine that with a full 72-hour dough ferment, tender clams, salted chiles, and a good squeeze of lemon, and you’ve got the ultimate bite.” Pair your pizza with Robert Bohr’s well-curated wine list.

187 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10012; E.


Pizzaphiles drop by this old-school spot on Orchard Street, beloved for its vintage trappings complete with wood-paneled walls, a long bar counter, and Tiffany-style lamps. Nab a backroom booth and select from four slice variations (original, white, pepperoni, and Sicilian) using locally-sourced tomatoes, milled-in-house flour, and complimentary toppings like jalapeno, and crisp pancetta.

22 Orchard St, New York, NY 10002; T. (212) 334-3481

Lil’ Frankies

In the early aughts, owner Frank Prisinzano, whose first job was in a pizzeria, was looking for Naples-style joints in the East Village. “I just wanted my own pizza from my own pizzeria,” Prisinzano recalls. Lucky us. As for what to order inside this brick-exposed space: “The first thing I cooked in the oven was the whole eggplant pizza, which is now maybe our most popular dish.”

19 1st Avenue, New York, NY 10003; T. (212) 420-4900


This narrow, rustic space on Mulberry Street mixes the right amount of reclaimed wood tables, vaulted ceilings, moody lighting, and old photos. Hungry patrons nosh on chef A.J. Pappalardo’s simple, thin-crust pies with classic red sauce, and ambitious offerings with anchovies, oyster mushrooms, and soppressata. For dessert, it’s all about the rainbow cookies. Please note: slices are only available during lunch.

235 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10012; T. (212) 965-0500


Venture to Carroll Gardens for the dimly lit, bare-walled space of supreme pizza whiz (and Brooklyn native) Mark Iacono, whose offering of only two items feature artisanal brick oven pies alongside expertly-crisp, warm calzones (in three sizes) folded with ingredients like chewy mounds of pepperoni. Insider tip: call ahead and put your name down. BYOB, and cash only.

575 Henry St, Brooklyn, NY 11231; T.  (718) 858-4086

Words Kate Donnelly

Photography courtesy Pasquale Jones

You May Also Like

Fort Tilden New York Best Swim Spots

Get the Skinny on New York's Best Dips

Get yourself to any of these locations and come back once the sun has backed off enough to enjoy the cool air of the city's beautiful summer nights. 
Downtown Karaoke Bars New York Baby Grand Planet Rose Sing Sing Up Stairs Bar

No-frills, all-thrills: Downtown Karaoke Bars

bars & nightlife
Our favorite downtown karaoke bars have something for everybody and we’re sharing them with you. 
Best Tacos NYC

A Taco Tour of NYC

These Mexican restaurants meet firmly in the middle between great taste and exciting atmosphere.
Dog Park NYC

Unwind & Unleash: Soho Grand Dog Park

Tribeca's Hidden Treasure: Sunset Oysters And  Live Jazz

Tribeca's Hidden Treasure: Sunset Oysters And Live Jazz

food & drink
Summer Reads McNally Jackson Sam MacLaughlin

McNally Jackson Summer Reading List

art & design
For your reading pleasure. McNally Jackson’s Sam MacLaughlin shares his must-read list. 
Davide Sorrenti Photographer Downtown New York

Basquiat, Davide Sorrenti & More: Summer Art Picks

art & design
From Sorrenti's photographs of 90s downtown New York to the Guggenheim's first artist-curated exhibition—these shows are not to be missed.
Pastis Restaurant West Village New York

Pastis 2.0: The Rebirth of a New York Culinary Icon

Last month saw the bold return of famed French brasserie that closed its doors in 2014. Natasha Silva-Jelly investigates.
Best Rate Promise
Soho Grand Hotel

310 West Broadway
New York, NY 10013

(212) 965-3000
The Roxy Hotel Tribeca

2 6th Avenue
New York, NY 10013