A week ago, after arduous and weighty research, I came out with my Top 5 picks for best pizzas in town. Listed in alphabetical order according to where I found each pizza. Which, apparently, was confusing.
I get that. It’s a little confusing to read what I just wrote. What’s the ranking? people asked. Where’s the best pizza?
First, thanks for saying something. Thanks to you, I’m recasting the listing into a ranking of the best pizza places in town.
Methodology? I went in as a pizza lover with an open mind. No preset standards about certain styles, combos of toppings or thicknesses of crust. Just looking for an experience that would wow my taste buds in a way that would linger on my brain. That simple.
I tasted more than three dozen pizzas, either served up on the premises or hot and fresh out of the box in my car. At each place I tried two, three or four pies (except for North Shore Farms, which makes only one kind, and The Alley at Aiea Bowl). Each pizza got one chance, meaning I didn’t go back to try the same pizza.
And it was all about the pizza. Service and ambience didn’t matter. The first impression counted the most: How OMG is it? Are my eyes rolling around? Am I marveling to everyone at the table with every bite? (If you’ve eaten with me, BTW, sorry about that.) If I was by myself, did I have to resist the urge to phone someone about the incredibleness?
Second impression was the lasting one. Days later, was I still dreaming about that pizza? That was the clincher. The ones I loved, I wanted more of. Most of the time, these were the same pies that hit it out of the ballpark with the first impression, but not always.
To drool over pics of the top-ranked pies, check out the gallery. Here’s a peek at the rest.
Best pizza places in town: The ranking