Food & Drink

The Best Pizza Places in Houston

Published On 09/16/2015 Published On 09/16/2015
Cane rosso pizzas
Cane Rosso

Last year, Jay Z dissed Houston pizza on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, saying “they don’t have pizza there,” all because Beyoncé takes her slice with extra sauce and jalapeños. While we know Brooklyn has its own breed of pizza pride, we have to disagree with Young Hov: Houston’s pie scene is booming... plus jalapeños on pizza are delicious. Jiggaman, next time you visit with Bey, we beg you to try our pizza again. We’ll even give you a head start with the top pizzerias in town.

Bollo Woodfired Pizza

Bollo Woodfired Pizza

Upper Kirby

Imported “double zero” flour and a VPN-certified wood-burning oven mean every Bollo pie comes out blistered and smoky as all hell. Get them topped with everything from creamy buffalo mozz and prosciutto di Parma to fresh jalapeños and crazy-good Texas Wagyu beef.

Cane Rosso

Cane Rosso

Heights

This Dallas-born pizzeria is opening any day now, with a second location planned for Montrose. Having eaten at its Big D counterpart, we can confirm Houston is in for some Big D-eliciousness (sorry, it was right there). Get expertly crafted, certified awesome Neapolitan pies made with fresh dough scorched in an intensely hot a wood-burning oven, and get them topped with things like local sausage, Calabrian chiles, and house-made mozzarella.

Coltivare

Coltivare Pizza & Garden

Heights

There’s a reason people don’t mind the no-reservations policy at this modern Italiano joint, and it’s not because they like achieving a sturdy buzz before sitting down to eat (although maybe it’s a little bit of that, too). It’s mainly because everything coming out of the wood-fired oven and urban garden is borderline euphoric, and that includes the rustic, chubby, locally inspired pies. The whole lineup is top notch, so come with friends and order a mix to avoid failing yet another multiple choice test.

Luna Pizzeria

Upper Kirby

These scorched San Fran-style pies are perfectly chewy and puffy thanks to fresh sourdough from local bakery Angela's Oven. Counter service keeps things wallet friendly, but you’ll have the impossible task of deciding between impressively good adornments like whipped ricotta, shiitake 'shrooms, and fiery andouille before you reach the front of the line. Maybe get them all?

Dolce Vita

Dolce Vita Pizzeria Enoteca

Montrose

This Westheimer powerhouse from Chef Marco Wiles was the first to demonstrate the beauty of blistered and blackened wood-fired crusts to Houstonians. Impossibly good flavor combinations like taleggio, pear, and truffle oil or roasted clams and garlic, all of which peek throughout the pies’ scorched nooks and crannies, proved to be too good to resist. As do bowls of al dente rigatoni studded with pig fat and heavy cream, so head here for a dreamy pizza-pasta combo that’s way better than that franken-garbage the one national chain is trying to pawn on people.

Luigi's Pizzeria

Midtown

Foldable New York-style slices may be a novelty in this city, but those very things are the weapons of choice at this old-school pizzeria. The Midtown hideaway has always been a cult favorite, but with the opening of the totally rad Axelrad Beer Garden, with which it shares a yard, Luigi’s has become a bona fide institution.

D’Marcos Pizzeria

D'Marcos Pizzeria

Sugar Land

While not everyone has been sold on the Chicago imports coming into town, this homegrown pizzeria has won over crowds with their buttery, flaky, and fully gluttonous deep dish and slightly less gluttonous thin-crust pies from the start. The owner was gifted the recipes from his favorite (now defunct) Chi-town spot, Mama Rigetta, so though the spot is homegrown, the Chicago-style pies are as authentic as you can get.

Piola Houston

Piola

Midtown

This Midtown staple boasts the most authentically Italian pizza in town. That’s because the massive chain got its start in Italy before making its way to H-town. You’ll find 40+ pies at this outpost, from the legitimately amazing prosciutto crudo number to the heavenly ricotta & spinach. You’ll also find ALL-YOU-CAN-EAT gnocchi on the 29th of every month, which has absolutely nothing to do with pizza but deserves to be mentioned, nonetheless.

Pizaro's Pizza

Pizaro's Pizza Napoletana

Montrose (& Memorial)

Having two locations means you have double the chance to get your Neapolitan-style eating on. Both of the casual counter-service haunts draw a steady crowd thanks to high-class toppings and blissfully charred wood-fired crusts (which only take about 90 seconds to crisp in the massive 900+ degree ovens). They are also BYOB, which never hurt anyone.

Pizzeria Solario

Pizzeria Solario

Upper Kirby

Topped with things like house-made fior di latte, soppressata, and Calabrian chilis before being wood fired at 900+ degrees until bubbling and charred, these red- and white-based regional Italian pies are a force to be reckoned with. Take them down with things like fire-roasted polpette, red wine, and gelato. As is tradition.

Romano's Pizza

Montrose

Follow the Yankee caps to this no-frills pizzeria, where the service is just as New York as the lightly sauced, thin, and crisp slices. Don’t expect a lot of small talk, just solidly executed plain, pepperoni, and Italian sausage pies that come out fast and hot.

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Brooke Viggiano is a Houston writer who used to sling pies after the bars closed in college. She didn’t work at the pizza place and is still not sure why they let her behind the counter. Follow her for more riveting tales @BrookeViggiano.

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1. Bollo Woodfired Pizza 2202A W Alabama, Houston, TX 77098

This Upper Kirby pizza joint from the owner of the more casual Pepperoni’s chain features Italian small plates and entrees along with pies cooked from an authentic VPN-certified wood-fired oven and made from imported "double zero" flour. Get them topped with everything from creamy buffalo mozz to Texas Wagyu beef. Sip on house cocktails or choose from a carefully curated wine list to pair with your Italian fare.

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2. Cane Rosso 1835 N Shepherd Dr, Houston, TX 77008

The Heights location of this Dallas-born pizzeria delivers the same amazing pizza fellow Texans have come to love. Get expertly crafted, certified awesome Neapolitan pies made with fresh dough scorched in an intensely hot wood-burning oven. You definitely won't want to skip the cheese, since they make their mozzarella in-house. As a matter of fact, this team makes most things from scratch, from the dough to the pasta. You'll definitely be experiencing some authentic Italian in this rustic, brick-walled space.

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3. Coltivare Pizza & Garden 3320 White Oak Dr, Houston, TX 77007

From Revival Market's Ryan Pera & Morgan Weber, Coltivare is a seasonally-inspired eatery that puts a fresh spin on traditional Italian foodstuffs. Think small plates & charcuterie, whole-roasted fish, pastas, and wood-fired pies. The kitchen picks every bit of fruit, veg, and greenery straight from its 3,000sqft garden. They don’t take reservations, so you’ll need to elbow your way to the bar and sip on a few of Weber’s classically inspired tinctures while you wait for your table.

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4. Luna Pizzeria 3435 Kirby Dr, Houston, TX 77098

This Upper Kirby pizza shop serves scorched San Fran-style pies that are perfectly chewy and puffy thanks to fresh sourdough from local bakery Angela's Oven. Counter service keeps things wallet friendly, but you’ll have the impossible task of deciding between impressively good adornments like whipped ricotta and fiery andouille before you reach the front of the line. Maybe get them all? The pizzeria itself is modern and whimsical, with star-shaped light fixtures, granite countertops and bright red metal stools.

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5. Dolce Vita 500 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77006 (Montrose)

This Westheimer powerhouse from Chef Marco Wiles introduced the beauty of wood-fired Neapolitan pizzas to Houstonians. DV's wood-burning oven doles out perfectly bubbling and scorched pies (they only take 90 seconds to cook) in simple flavor combinations. The menu also includes tapas-like small plates categorized by meat, vegetable, and fish. Tack on a thoughtful Italian wine list and this place is a total winner.

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6. Luigi's Pizzeria 3700 Almeda, Houston, TX 77004

Foldable New York-style slices may be a novelty in Houston, but those very things are the weapons of choice at this old-school pizzeria. The Midtown hideaway has always been a cult favorite, but with the opening of the totally rad Axelrad Beer Garden, with which it shares a yard, Luigi’s has become a bona fide institution.

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7. D'marcos Pizzeria 11102 S Texas 6, Sugar Land, TX 77498

While not everyone has been sold on the Chicago imports coming into town, this homegrown pizzeria has won over Sugar Land crowds with their buttery, flaky, and fully gluttonous deep dish and slightly less gluttonous thin-crust pies from the start. The owner was gifted the recipes from his favorite (now defunct) Chi-town spot, Mama Rigetta, so though the spot is homegrown, the Chicago-style pies are as authentic as you can get. The interior looks like your standard pizza joint, with wooden furniture and toppings and napkin dispensers on the table. When you see how much sauce is involved, you'll be glad those are there.

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8. Piola 3201 Louisiana St, Houston, TX 77006 (Midtown)

This Midtown staple boasts the most authentically Italian pizza in town. That’s because the massive chain got its start in Italy before making its way to H-town. You’ll find 40+ pies at this outpost in addition to ALL-YOU-CAN-EAT gnocchi on the 29th of every month. The space is informal, with eclectic multicolored lighting and red leather booths lining the walls.

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9. Pizaro's Pizza Napoletana 14028 Memorial Dr, Houston, TX 77079 (Memorial City)

This no-frills pizza spot will fire up your pie in a classic wood-fired brick oven. The best part? You can dine on classics or specialty pizzas like the patata e funghi (potato and mushroom) with beers from home. Thank god for BYOB.

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10. Pizzeria Solario 3333 Weslayan No100, Houston, TX 77027

Pizzeria Solario in Upper Kirby showcases a menu of regional Italian eats, from pastas to charcuterie, but it's the pizza that really shines here. Topped with things like cured meats and fresh mozzarella before being wood fired at 900+ degrees until bubbling and charred, these red- and white-based pies are a force to be reckoned with. Take them down with a glass from their nicely curated wine list, and be sure to finish with gelato.

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11. Romano's Pizza 1528 West Gray, Houston, TX 77019

Follow the Yankee caps to this no-frills pizzeria in Montrose, where the service is just as New York as the lightly sauced, thin, and crisp slices. Don’t expect a lot of small talk, just solidly executed plain, pepperoni, and Italian sausage pies that come out fast and hot. The counter-service style of this place lets you get in and out quickly, but you're welcome to stay and pair your slices with beer or wine and, if it's warm, take it all to the outdoor seating.

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