There’s Queens, and then there’s “Deep Queens." Deep Queens is where I live. It’s where I’ve always lived and probably will always live. As far as I’m concerned, anything West of Flushing is Brooklyn. Now, there are a ton of pizza places in Deep Queens, but these seven are the best of the forgotten borough. (Staten Island isn’t a real place, I’m pretty sure someone made that up.) Do yous remember how to drive a car? Good. Here we go.
 

Rosa's Pizza & Pasta

Maspeth
What you’re getting: Regular or Sicilian slice ($2.45)
What the hell is in Maspeth? Who cares? Just stop at Rosa’s for a Sicilian and get right back on the LIE. Done. According to my friend, Fudd, they have the “hands-down best friggin’ Sicilian in the city, cuz. Grandma slice too! Is it my turn to act?” (Sorry, we were playing poker when I quoted him.) While famous for its sauce-on-top-Sicilian, Rosa's also has crazy pies with ravioli (?) and taco toppings if you’re into that sort of thing. I’m not sure if i’m imagining it or what, but the regular slice seems huge compared to most other places. Ask Maspethians where to go for a slice and you’ll get the answer in exclaimed unison: “Rosa's! What are you, stunod?”

Flickr/La Piazza Pizzeria

Pizza Garden

Flushing
What you’re getting: Regular slice ($2.00)
Since 1960, Pizza Garden has been my neighborhood pizza joint: a family operation since day one that always makes me feel welcome. Always busy, always fresh, and you can actually take some time to eat inside in the comfort of the surprisingly spacious dining room. If you see a hilarious, bald guy who reminds you of David Lee Roth without his wig, that’s Richie. He owns the place. For two bucks, you get a thin and crisp slice with a dash of oregano that cracks perfectly when folded. Cheesier than a lot of the other places on this list, the Pizza Garden slice has a nice, gooey mozzarella that starts to slide off the crust about halfway through eating. I love that. I love it so much. And if that doesn’t convince you, maybe the sweet theme song will.
 

Gloria Pizza

Forest Hills
What you’re getting: Regular slice ($2.50)
Gloria was a pizza place on Main St in Flushing that we used to eat at when I was a kid. It was incredible. Then it closed. For 20 freaking years. Everyone cried. There was much sadness. Then in 2012, the pizza gods finally heard our laments and it reopened in Forest Hills. There was much rejoicing. (Warning: fake Italian accent.) The slice, she is-a-thin. She flops a bit like Danilo Gallinari, but not-a-so-much as the King LeBron James. The grease, she is not-a-thick like oil from the bicycle, but like a fine orange wine. She look-a-like the same texture as Amore’s, but have a crispier crust that makes a nice music like-a when-a-you dance on the beach seashells without-a-you shoes. So nice. So beautiful this slice -- is like making love to a woman you no see in 20 years because she break-a-you heart. But now, your heart is to sing once more. (End of fake Italian accent.)

John Houlihan

Brother's Pizzeria

Fresh Meadows
What you’re getting: Regular slice ($2.25)
I’ve always said that the older and dumpier the sign, the better the pizza. This has never been more true than at Brother’s. This no-frills, quintessential neighborhood pizza place is so hardcore, it only serves regular and Sicilian slices. That’s it. No Buffalo chicken, no avocado kale smoothie nonsense -- just pizza. And what a pizza it is. The classic, thin, crisp, saucy slice with a good shot of oregano is pure New York. When I stopped by for a slice the other day, it literally melted in my mouth.

Brother’s has been around for more than 50 years and Joe, the guy behind the counter who's ALWAYS making another pizza (whether it’s necessary or not), has been there for over 40. Dennis, the owner, started working there when he was a kid. It’s a friendly joint with a counter full of regulars that makes you feel like you’ve stepped back in time to the days of the old soda shop. But don’t just take my word for it, ask that Alec Baldwin.
 

Lucia Pizza

Flushing
What you’re getting: Regular slice ($2.25)
Finally, a place you can get to by subway. Take the 7 train to Flushing Main St, head straight to Lucia Pizza, and squeeze into the tiny restaurant for a stand-up slice (there’s usually nowhere to sit). This place has been around at least since I was a kid and not much has changed. It was a staple of our diet and a regular stop when we would shop at Main St in the mid-'90s for fake IDs, novelty shirts, and illegal knives. Another NY-style, thin slice, its makers have seemingly mastered the art of melding just the right amounts of sugar, salt, grease, and cheese into the perfect storm of pizza. It’s my wife’s favorite pizza place and she makes me go with her so I can run in while she double-parks/drives around in circles (Flushing Main St is a very busy place). My wife is always right. This pizza kicks ass.

Shutterstock/Cristi Lucaci

Amore Pizzeria

Flushing
What you’re getting: Regular slice ($2.00)
Sure, you’re taking your life into your hands when braving the Wild West of parking lots at Amore, but the regular slice will have you hugging the chooch who just liberated your side-view mirror. Like Brother’s, it’s another thin slice, but with a different taste. This slightly sweet sucker with a crisp flop has a one-of-a-kind look and texture (pizza camouflage?) that demands an immediate fold. Amore is a place in my neighborhood that EVERYONE knows about. It’s the kind of joint you mention and people start “mmmmm’ing” and drooling instead of speaking actual words. It remains my buddy Carmine Famiglietti’s favorite pizza shop and his name is Carmine freaking Famiglietti, for Christ's sake. He contends that it’s “the best working man’s slice in Queens,” and I have yet to find anyone who disagrees.
 

VIPizza

Bayside
What you’re getting: Sicilian slice ($2.75)
VIPizza on Bell Blvd in Bayside serves up the best Sicilian slice I have ever eaten. EVER. They’ve torn down and rebuilt since I was a kid, so of course you get all these jadrools who think they know something: "It’s not the same as it was, cuz!" "My Uncle Lou said it used to be the best, but now it’s just okay." B.S. It’s incredible. It’s awesome. Be quiet. Thank you. There’s a good reason it's been in business for half-a-friggin’ century.

There’s no reason to get a regular slice at VIPizza. I’m sure it’s probably great, but I’ve never had one because, WHY? So many places have a low turnover on Sicilian. It’s the most hit-or-miss thing in the world. Either it doesn’t heat up right because it's been sitting out too long, or they don’t put enough effort into it because they don’t sell as many... whatever the problem, VIPizza doesn’t have it. Perfect Sicilian slice. Marone.

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John Houlihan is a native Queens resident and the host of the radio show, Live from the Barrage. He sees no reason to leave Queens. Ever.

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1. Rosa's Pizza & Pasta 5526 69th St, New York, NY 11378 (Queens)

What the hell is in Maspeth? Who cares? Just stop at Rosa’s for a Sicilian and get right back on the LIE. Done. While famous for its sauce-on-top-Sicilian, Rosa's also has crazy pies with ravioli (?) and taco toppings if you’re into that sort of thing.

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2. Pizza Garden 17101 Northern Blvd, Queens, NY 11358 (Flushing)

Since 1960, Pizza Garden has been a family operation that'll make you feel welcome. Always busy, always fresh, and you can actually take some time to eat inside in the comfort of the surprisingly spacious dining room. For two bucks, you get a thin and crisp slice with a dash of oregano that cracks perfectly when folded.

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3. Gloria Pizza 108-22 Queens Blvd, Forest Hills, NY 11375 (Queens)

Gloria closed for 20 freaking years. Everyone cried. There was much sadness. Then in 2012, the pizza gods finally heard our laments and it reopened in Forest Hills. The regular slice is thin, slightly floppy, and has just the right amount of grease and crispiness to its crust.

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4. Brother's Pizzeria 185-04 Horace Harding Expy, Fresh Meadows, NY 11365 (Flushing)

The older and dumpier the sign, the better the pizza. This has never been more true than at Brother’s. This no-frills, quintessential neighborhood pizza place is so hardcore, it only serves regular and Sicilian slices. That’s it. No Buffalo chicken, no avocado kale nonsense -- just good old-fashioned pizza. And what a pizza it is. The classic, thin, crisp, saucy slice with a good shot of oregano is pure New York.

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5. Lucia Pizza 136-55 Roosevelt Ave, Flushing, NY 11354 (Flushing)

Take the 7 train to Flushing Main St, head straight to Lucia Pizza, and squeeze into the tiny restaurant for a stand-up slice (there’s usually nowhere to sit). Another NY-style, thin slice, its makers have seemingly mastered the art of melding just the right amounts of sugar, salt, grease, and cheese into the perfect storm of pizza.

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6. Amore Pizzeria 30-27 Stratton St, Flushing, NY 11354 (Flushing)

Sure, you’re taking your life into your hands when braving the Wild West of parking lots at Amore, but the regular slice will make it all worthwhile. It’s a thin slice, but with a unique taste. This slightly sweet sucker with a crisp flop has a one-of-a-kind look and texture (pizza camouflage?) that demands an immediate fold.

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7. VIPizza 4302 Bell Blvd, Bayside, NY 11361 (Queens)

VIPizza on Bell Blvd in Bayside serves up a fantastic Sicilian slice -- there’s a good reason it's been in business for half-a-friggin’ century.

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