The best pizza restaurants in London
Berberè is the first UK outpost of Italian pizzerias from brothers Matteo and Salvatore Aloe. For sourdough pizza dough made fresh every day, super generous toppings, and pre-cut perfectly-sized slices (why do modern pizzerias so often neglect to do this?), Berberè is your joint. Because the toppings are so ample and the pieces so evenly cut, every slice is as good as the last – no rationing of toppings or saving the best piece until last is necessary here.
The menu includes the ‘Spicy Diavola’ with spicy salami and ‘Nduja, and ‘the ‘Aubergine’ with baked aubergine, homemade basil & walnut pesto and smoked ricotta. There are three white pizzas too. For starters, a selection of ‘Fritti’ – deep fried dough balls with a variety of toppings – are a must try.
Berberè are on Uber Eats and Deliveroo, so a great option if you’re self-isolating, too.
Locations in East Dulwich, Hackney, Crofton Park, Walthamstow, Leytonstone, Finsbury Park, Crystal Palace and Clapton.
Yard Sale is a chain of hipster pizzieras scattered across London but, rest assured, their restaurants are anything but style-over-substance. Priding themselves on their made-to-share sourdough, diners can choose between a 12-inch or whopping 18-inch base. And if the gluttony of an 18-inch pizza pie isn’t enough to entice you, their out-of-the-ordinary toppings surely will – think broccoli with manchego, vegan pepperoni with guindilla chillies and spicy anchovies with caper berries. Vegans can rejoice too, as there’s now a stand-alone menu which is free from meat and dairy.
Rudy’s first opened in Manchester in 2015 and Londoners are now lucky enough to be able to get a slice of the action at Rudy’s new Soho outpost. Rudy’s offer Neapolitan pizza dough, freshly made daily, with super generous toppings, from the Tonno (with tuna, olives, chilli, onions and roquito peppers) to the Carni (salame napoli, salame picante, salame finnocchiona, wild boar salame, and basil). Not only are pizzas large and generous (think bigger than the plate vibes), starters are too. Choose from salumi or vegetarian antipasti plates, burrata with roasted tomatoes, or the incredibly good value Campari and soda which comes with proper European olive-oil fried crisps at just £3.50 a pop. Desserts are also worth a try, especially the tartufo, a classic Italian dessert composed of ice cream with a flavoursome surprise in the centre. Hazelnut and chocolate was the winner for us.
Location in Crystal Palace
Spanning three shop fronts, the new 2000 square foot site from the team behind Made of Dough seats 80 and the Mad Men-esque décor and crimson colour scheme had us at hello. The pizzas are glorious, from a lamb sausage number to an aubergine and parmesan piece, and you simply must try the dips for your crusts as well. Drinks include Italian wines, classic cocktails such as bicicletta and a marrtini make up a strong aperitif selection. Pizza is supported by some truly stellar small plates: zucchini fritti, a perfect chicken milanese with lemon and more mortadella than you could ever need. Pay this place a visit if you’re in the area.
Locations in Spitalfields, Hoxton, Aldgate, King’s Cross and Dalston.
If you like your pizza thin, crisp and ‘superveloce’ (that’s ‘superfast’ in Italian), it’s probably in your interest to pay Pizza Union a visit. Their procedure is simple: order, pay and collect a buzzer at the counter – don’t worry, it usually flashes in a matter of minutes. And the best part? You can get your mitts on a crowd-pleasing Margherita for just £3.95 (possibly the cheapest of its kind in London). They also peddle meaty toppings, vegan options and tomato-free bases, with the most-costly pizza climbing to a penny-pinching £6.50. With pizza so thin, there’s always room to spare for a warm, sugar-coated Nutella and mascarpone dough ring, if you’re so inclined. Pizza Union is the go-to pizzeria for when money is tight and time is of the essence.
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Locations in Marylebone and Monaco.
If it’s a party atmosphere you’re looking for, then Crazy Pizza is certainly the right place to head to. Located in Marylebone (and Monaco, should you happen to be in the area!) Crazy Pizza is a great choice when you’re craving a slice of the good stuff but also fancy a sing-along (it’s a fab birthday party venue). Their homemade mozzarellas are worth a visit alone, and deserve their own special shout-out.
The menu consists of a selection of Italian starters, the previously-mentioned mozzarellas and a selection of adventurous pizzas. We went for the Parma ham and the focaccia di recco (which is essentially flatbread stuffed with gooey stracchino cheese!) but rumour has it, their truffle pizza is to die for.
Made of Dough
Locations in Peckham and Shoreditch.
Made of Dough started out in 2014 and are known for their deliciously chewy, perfectly-salted bases. With branches in Peckham and Shoreditch, they are one of the rare restaurants who cross the North-South divide. Prices range from £7.50 to £11, and half price pizzas are on offer EVERY MONDAY. Hurrah! Delicious wine is available starting from a mere £4 a glass, with milkshakes and tiramisu hitting the sweet spot. Whatever you do, don’t leave without tasting the anchovy and mozzarella bread – it comes with a basil aioli so good that one taste of the stuff will have you craving it forever more.
Need a place to eat that’s crowd-pleasing, good for groups, just-as-great for couples and excellent value-for-money? We consider Franco Manca to be the all-rounder of the pizza world. It’s the sort of place that does the simple things well, with no unnecessary fuss or gimmicks. They’re famous for their sourdough bases, which are always doughy and delicious, and pizzas ranging between £5 and £9 (maximum) so you’re never going to feel short-changed here. Top up your order with a glass of wine (for a smidgen over £4) and a pudding (for just under £4) and you’ve still spent little more than 15 quid per head. Sold!
Waterloo and Wandsworth.
They describe their pizza crusts as ‘super soft and leopard spotted’ and trust us when we say, Crust Bros pizza is definitely worth waxing lyrical about. The culinary reigns are handed over to diners here with a ‘create your own’ menu (pizzas start from a modest £6.65). It’s a five-step process: choose your dough, sauce, protein, cheese and crust of choice (the ricotta stuffed crust is our favourite). There’s also an (optional) step to dip your finished creation into a pot of garlic, chilli or truffle mayo, for an extra £1.25.
The Waterloo branch is located a stone’s throw from The Imax, The Old Vic and Young Vic theatres, it’s a brilliant place to pick up a pre-theatre pizza, while the Wandsworth location is situated in the beautiful Sambrook’s Brewery.
Since opening in late 2018, Coal Drops Yard is home to a number of boutique shops, quirky bars and a great mix of restaurants. However, it’s been severely lacking on the pizza front – until now. Recently-opened Happy Face offers seriously moreish pizzas in a buzzy, vast space that offers up great post-work grub. Their short and sweet menu boasts a range of affordable meaty and veggie sourdough options and all bases can be adapted to be gluten-free. Heading out afterwards? Pop downstairs to the restaurant’s funky speakeasy bar, Supermax, for a post-pizza aperitif.
Camberwell/Elephant & Castle
If you find yourself south of the river and ravenous for sourdough, there’s only one place you should consider heading to. Indie-Italian setup Theo’s serves bright and beautiful Neapolitan pizzas which all come loaded with artisan toppings — think cavolo nero cream, scotch bonnet nduja, soppressata and more. It’s packed with regulars, who return for the reliable pizza and who stay for the chilled neighbourhood vibes. Round off the evening with one of their classic Italian desserts — for us, it’s got to be their properly-good tiramisu.
Share A Slice
Brixton and Peckham
While not a classic pizzeria, Share A Slice’s kitchens at Pop Brixton and Bussey Rooftop Bar are well worth a visit. Not only did founders Raj and Sandeep learn their slinging skills from a pro in Naples itself, even more impressively Share A Slice is a social enterprise: for every pizza purchased, the business donates one to those in need via their local charity partners in Brixton and Peckham. The team deliver the pizzas themselves meaning they create meaningful relationships with those in the local community, and since their launch in 2019 Share A Slice have donated an amazing 10,650 pizzas to different charities across the city. After 2020, Raj says “Living in a pandemic for the past year has hit vulnerable groups hardest and stressed the importance of giving back to the local community.”
All ingredients are imported weekly from Italy, and the menu is filled with some really interesting options, our favourite being the pumpkin sauce base topped with spicy ‘nduja, mozzarella and orange zest (it works!). Raj and Sandeep’s enthusiasm for creating delicious and authentic pizza while giving back to those in need is infectious.
If you fancy a change from Neapolitan sourdough, London’s best alternative has got to be Homeslice. Serving gargantuan 20-inch New York-style pizzas made for sharing, Homeslice offers a sense of occasion unlike any other London pizzeria.
The menu’s inventive scale of toppings produces truly stunning pizza that wouldn’t look out of place in an art gallery; think za’atar roasted aubergine with smoked red peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, a red onion and olive pickle, pistachios and rose petals (yes, that’s just one option). Even though they’re huge, the pizzas are so deliciously crisp and thin you won’t feel too heavy after a Homeslice-sesh. If you’re not super hungry, you can order by the slice, but we’d recommend going for the experience of gorging on a 20-inch with your pals.
Calling all carb-lovers! Don’t forget to check out the best pasta restaurants in London, too…