Food & Drink

The Absolute Best Pizza Joints in Charlotte

Libretto's Pizzeria Charlotte

Libretto's Street Pizza

Downtown

Libretto's Pizzeria has several brick-and-mortar locations, including one inside the EpiCentre in Uptown Charlotte. Instead of heading there, hit up the street pizza truck (nicknamed Lucille), which can be found roaming around town. The food truck is where you’ll find out-of-the-box specials like the Pinkman Special, named after a security guard at a local music venue. It comes topped with ricotta, ground beef, mushrooms, roasted garlic, and a drizzle of truffle oil.

PHOTO COURTESY OF CARTER SHORT

Pure Pizza

Uptown

Pure Pizza got its name from its holistic pizza philosophy, which involves a revolutionary sprouted ancient grain crust and farm-fresh ingredients. This location is in the 7th Street Public Market, but Pure Pizza will open its second location in Plaza Midwood this July, complete with an urban greenhouse to produce its very own homegrown toppings. Try the Margherita, made of perfect simplicity, or the Chorizo pizza, topped with shaved radishes, tomatoes, fresh tomatoes, cilantro, chorizo, and a squeeze of lime. The side of spicy honey it serves for dunking pizza crust is spot-on.

Benny Pennello's

NoDa

Finally! A late-night, by-the-slice spot amid the NoDa neighborhood bar scene (and a delicious one at that). The home of the “Virginia Slice” -- named after where the business began -- has now moved over to North Carolina to provide Charlotteans the chance to get their hands on that whopping 28in round pie that made Benny's famous... though if we’re being honest, seeing as one slice takes up TWO plates, you might not need the whole pie. (But hey, why not give it a shot?) If you’re looking for something to help get that pizza down, Benny’s has more than 25 brews on hand, so you’ll never go thirsty.

Luisa's Brick Oven Pizzeria

Luisa's Brick Oven Pizzeria

Madison Park

Luisa’s is a hidden gem near the Park Road Shopping Center that has been serving authentic Italian pizzas for over 20 years from its mammoth wood-fired oven. The Luisa, a crowd favorite, is topped with pesto, sliced tomatoes, fresh garlic, ricotta, and mozzarella cheese. Bust a gut on a tasting tour of Luisa’s pizza selection at the weekday lunch buffet where you can sample at least 10 different pizzas.

New York Pizza

South End

There’s nothing fancy about New York Pizza, but a slice of plain cheese or pepperoni pizza -- with that ideal grease factor -- and a side of doughy, well-seasoned garlic knots will do the trick. Order in or take it out, but make sure you clear out the passenger seat for that 18in pie.

Hawthornes NY Pizza & Bar

Hawthorne's Pizza

Elizabeth

Hawthorne’s on 7th St is serving up New York-style pizzas with a heaping side of patio. Enjoy the view on the busy corner of 7th and Hawthorne while digging into the Crew Pizza, a thin-crust pizza topped with meatballs, Italian sausage, banana peppers, and red onion. The patio is nice, but so is the adjacent takeout window that makes for easy pie access.

Due Amici Pizza

Highland Creek

If it’s one heck of a New York-style slice you’re after, Due Amici should be your next pit stop. The glorified favorites -- the chicken parm or caprese pies -- will have you coming back to this casual, counter-service establishment time and time again, but the more adventurous ones will keep you talking. Try out a famous stuffed pie, filled with either meat or vegetables, for just $24. And be sure to get a side of the garlic knots, as the smell alone will probably have you drooling.

COURTESY OF RÉMY THURSTON

Pizzeria Omaggio

Midtown

This place is great for a number of reasons, one of which is that you can build your own personal pie, or take your pick of one of the 19 specialty creations. It also offers some unique pizza-of-the-month options, such as shrimp scampi, pear gorgonzola, and fior di zucchine, just to name a few. The chef packs his menu with ingredients straight from the neighboring farmers market, so you can be sure you’re getting the freshest of the fresh at Pizzeria Omaggio when it comes to your pizza pie accoutrements.

Portofino's

Eastway

Portofino’s is where you go to get takeout on a lazy Friday night or any other night you want to eat an entire pizza in guilty isolation. Located in a sparsely populated shopping plaza, the family-owned business serves up a proper Italian pie. The Arrabbiata is a salty, savory dream layered with spicy marinara, prosciutto, mushrooms, tomatoes, Kalamata olives, and mozzarella cheese.

Tonya Russ Price/Poprock Photography

Pizza Peel

Plaza Midwood

In the former lot of a run-down gas station, Pizza Peel opened in Plaza Midwood and created a new gathering space for the neighborhood. Grab a local beer on tap, and order the Updyke, a pizza covered in mozzarella, goat cheese, Italian sausage, caramelized onions, mushrooms, and topped with fresh arugula. After that, grab another beer and hit the lively front lawn for a game of cornhole.

Da Vinci's Pizza

University City

Don’t let its simple strip mall setting fool you; this local pizza parlor is no secret around town when it comes to quality New York-style pizza. Da Vinci’s no-fuss approach makes for a perfect, and most certainly satisfying, low-key lunch break. But be forewarned: the smallest pizza on the menu is 16in, so come hungry, or willing to share if you’re foregoing the slice option.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
1. Libretto’s Pizzeria and Italian Kitchen 210 E. Trade St, Charlotte, NC 28202 (Uptown)

Libretto's Pizzeria has several brick-and-mortar locations, including one inside the EpiCentre in Uptown Charlotte. Libretto’s serves authentic New York City pizza in a casual and comfortable setting, with a delicious crispy crust and overflowing melting cheese. Also on the menu, you'll find Italian classics like calzones fresh from the oven and desserts. They also have a pizza truck which can be found roaming around town.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
2. Pure Pizza 224 E 7th St, Charlotte, NC 28202 (Uptown)

Pure Pizza is just that -- pizza made from the simplest ingredients, including a revolutionary sprouted ancient grain crust and farm fresh vegetables. Try the Margherita or chorizo pizza topped with shaved radishes, tomatoes, fresh tomatoes, cilantro and a squeeze of lime. Not to mention, the side of spicy honey they serve for dunking pizza crust is spot on.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
3. Benny Pennello's 2909 N Davidson St, Charlotte, NC 28205 (Noda)

This Virginia-based pizza concept boasts 28-inch pies with slices that warrant not one but two plates to carry a single piece. Benny Pennello's, in the NoDa neighborhood, is a great casual late-night and pizza-by-the-slice spot amidst Charlotte's bar scene, and it has more than 25 brews on hand so you’ll never go thirsty. Every month the pizza specials change so be sure to check online before you go to see what the month's special is, unless you're going for a little pizza adventure.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
4. Luisa’s Brick Oven Pizzeria 1730 Abbey Pl, Charlotte, NC 28209

Luisa's is a hidden gem that has been serving authentic Italian pizzas from its mammoth wood-fired oven for over 20 years from their location near the Park Road Shopping Center. For an all around favorite, order The Luisa, topped with pesto, sliced tomatoes, fresh garlic, ricotta, and mozzarella cheese. Or, dig into the weekday lunch buffet where you can try at least 10 different pizzas.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
5. New York Pizza 6037 South Blvd, Charlotte, NC 28217 (South End)

There’s nothing fancy about New York Pizza, but a slice of plain cheese or pepperoni pizza -- with that ideal grease factor -- and a side of doughy, well-seasoned garlic knots will do the trick. They also offer salads, wings & other Italian eats. Order in or take it out, but make sure you clear out the passenger seat for that 18in pie.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
6. Hawthorne's Pizza 1701 E 7th St, Charlotte, NC 28204 (Elizabeth)

Hawthorne’s on 7th St is serving up New York-style pizzas with a great patio to enjoy your food at. Enjoy the view on the busy corner of 7th and Hawthorne while digging into the Crew Pizza, a thin-crust pizza topped with meatballs, Italian sausage, banana peppers, and red onion. The patio is nice, but so is the adjacent takeout window that makes for easy pie-to-go access.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
7. Due Amici Pizzeria 5346 Prosperity Church Rd, Charlotte, NC 28269

If it’s one heck of a New York-style slice you’re after, Due Amici should be your next pit stop. The glorified favorites -- the chicken parm or Caprese pies -- will have you coming back to this casual, counter-service establishment time and time again, and the more adventurous pizza options ones will keep you talking. Try out a famous stuffed pie, filled with either meat or vegetables, and be sure to get a side of the garlic knots.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
8. Pizzeria Omaggio 1055 Metropolitan Ave, Charlotte, NC 28204

Pizzeria Omaggio is great for a number of reasons, one of which is that you can build your own personal pie, take your pick of one of the 19 specialty creations, or choose from some of the unique pizza-of-the-month options. The chef packs his menu with ingredients straight from the neighboring farmers market, so you can be sure you’re getting the freshest of the fresh at Pizzeria Omaggio when it comes to your pizza pie accoutrements.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
9. Portofino's 3124 Eastway Dr, Charlotte, NC 28205

Portofino’s, located in a quiet shopping center, is a family-owned business serving up a solid Italian pie. It's the perfect spot for when you want to get take-out and enjoy the delicious pizza, with options like the Arrabiatta, a salty-savory dream layered with spicy marinara, prosciutto, mushrooms, tomatoes, kalamata olives and mozzarella cheese.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
10. Pizza Peel 1600 Central Ave, Charlotte, NC 28205 (Plaza Midwood)

Having transformed a rundown gas station, Pizza Peel in Plaza Midwood is a gathering place for locals to grab a regional beer on tap, and order the Updyke, a pizza covered in mozzarella, goat cheese, Italian sausage, caramelized onions, mushrooms and topped with fresh arugula. This spot offers thirty-two draft beers, homemade desserts, and daily food and drink specials.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
11. DaVinci's Pizza 5700 University Pointe Blvd, Charlotte, NC 28262 (University City)

Don’t let its simple strip mall setting fool you; this local pizza parlor is no secret around town when it comes to quality New York-style pizza. Da Vinci’s no-fuss approach makes for a perfect and satisfying meal that never disappoints. But be forewarned: the smallest pizza on the menu is 16in, so come hungry, or willing to share if you’re foregoing the slice option.