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The Five Best Pizzerias on the Upper West Side blog image

The Five Best Pizzerias on the Upper West Side

January 17 2022

For many people, pizza is pizza – but for New Yorkers, that will never be the case. New York style pizza is, of course, the best pizza in the world and a must try if you’re visiting the Big Apple. 

But what is New York style pizza? 

Even some New Yorkers argue over the authenticity of what makes a true New York style pizza, but generally they are characterized by hand-tossed, thin crust pizza that are sold by the slice. 

The crust should be thick and crispy, and the pizza itself should be thin enough to be folded in half. A real New York pizzeria will offer the traditional “plain slice” consisting of tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese – any NYC pizzeria who doesn’t offer this staple should be avoided! 

If you’re visiting the Upper West Side, you’re in the perfect place to sample some of the best slices in the city. 

Mamas Too! – West 106th Street and Broadway

TimeOut magazine recently ranked Mamas Too! in the top five pizzerias in New York City, stating:

"Mama's Too!' gives a jolt to the Upper West Side's restaurant scene. Even its basic house pie, made with aged mozzarella, fresh tomato sauce, extra virgin olive oil, Parmigiano Reggiano and basil is evidence of Mama's expertise and attention to detail."

As well as being in the top five pizzerias in the city, Mamas Too! is also home to the second-best slice of pepperoni pizza in all five boroughs (according to Grubb Street). Whether you’re hoping to try a traditional plain slice of pizza or the best pepperoni of your life – there are few better places to do so. The popular pizzeria is located on Broadway, a 30-minute stroll or 10-minute subway ride from Hotel Beacon. 

Cheesy Pizza – 2640 Broadway

As they say, don’t judge a book by its cover – and that’s definitely the case with Cheesy Pizza. The pizzeria itself is not the tidiest or most attractive – but it serves a good, honest slice of New York pizza that really hits the spot. 

Established in 1985, Cheesy Pizza will take you back to your childhood with some of the best, cheesiest pizza you’ve ever tried. Cheesy Pizza is located just over a mile from the Hotel Beacon and delivery can be arranged. 

slice of new york style peperoni pizza, with a slice taken out on a paper plate with a new york taxi and street in the background.

Marinara Pizza – 483 Amsterdam

Real New York style pizza is traditional, but sometimes change is good. Marinara Pizza offers a modern approach to classic pizza – with unique toppings, refreshing décor and a fresh take on the New York favorite. Like any good pizza shop the plain slice is great, but the real treat is in the speciality toppings – trust us! Marinara Pizza is less than a 10-minute walk from the Hotel Beacon and delivery can also be arranged. 

Motorino – 85th Street and Columbus

If you want to try a slice of real Neapolitan Pizza, Motorino should not be missed. The New York Times stated in 2010 that Motorino’s is home to “the best pizza in the city” and now has three locations in the Big Apple. 

Visit at lunch time to catch their lunchtime special – any whole pizza and salad for $15 – to sample the food and keep the cost down. Motorino is located less than a mile from the Hotel Beacon. 

Young man with glasses and beard smiles as he eats a slice of new york style pizza, on a new york street in front of yellow taxi cab

Sal & Carmine Pizza – 2671 Broadway

Sal & Carmine Pizza was recently named as one of the “top 12 Neighborhood Pizza Slices'' by Eater New York. The pizzeria dates back to 1959 and is best known for its plain cheesy slices – including a classic margarita and a ricotta slice. The restaurant is just over a mile from the hotel and delivery can be arranged. 

The Hotel Beacon is a family friendly hotel that offers a home away from home in the hustle and bustle of New York City. Discover more about our apartment style suites here.