Diner Most-Loved

The 20 Best Pizza Spots in Portland on Caviar

Consider your melty cheesy cravings satisfied.

11 min read
6/10/2022
Sunny's Pizza

Everyone has a favorite style of pizza, whether it’s Neapolitan, New York, or Chicago. Luckily, Portland has ’em all — and the pizzerias add their own Portland spin. We’re talking hyperlocal toppings, vegan options, and plenty of delicious craft beer to go with them. Here are Portland’s top 20 pizzerias, in order of popularity, where you can order up your cheesy, melty fix tonight. 

via chicago

1. Via Chicago

Take this pizzeria’s name at face value: The pies are deep dish, crusty — everything you’d expect from a classic Chicago pizza joint. If you’ve never cut down into two inches of bubbling pizza, get ready. Go veggie with the artichoke and Parmesan, or go whole hog (forgive the pun) with the Meaty, which has both hot sausage and pepperoni, and adds tart giardinara peppers to cut through the richness. Balance the meal with one of five tasty salads, like the organic beet and arugula or the roasted pear, gorgonzola, and walnut. 

2. 24th Pizza & Meatballs

This neighborhood pizza and meatball shop has been excelling at both its namesake dishes since 2012. We love the meatballs done a la Nonna’s Special: fresh spaghetti topped with three classic Italian meatballs, tomato sauce, and parmesan. Of course, our favorite pie includes the famous meatballs: The #9, The Heartbreaker, has spicy pork meatballs, peppers, mozzarella, red onion, basil, and blue cheese — sounds odd, but it works!

3. The 1905

The 1905 is all about that thin, crispy, Neo-Neapolitan style. To fully appreciate its perfection, go ultra classic and grab a Margherita or pepperoni (or half and half!) in either a 12- or 18-inch pie, or by the slice. The 1905 also has a way with over-the-top American classics: Think fried mozzarella, mac ’n’ cheese with toasted bread crumbs, and tiramisu trifle. 

4. Red Sauce Pizza

At this Fremont Street restaurant, quality is the priority. All their pies are perfectly charred, with a base of aged mozzarella, Grana Padano, pecorino and house-made red sauce. We love the Ruthless, an ultra savory mushroom, ricotta, and truffle oil-topped pie; don’t skip the Cheesy B, a cheese bread you can dunk in ranch or red sauce (or both!). In case you forgot what city you’re in: All pizzas can be made vegan. 

please louise

5. Please Louise


This Slabtown restaurant serves crispy, thin-crust pizza and seasonally inspired small plates. We love to try a little of it all by starting with spring asparagus and saffron arancini, and the arugula salad filled with zucchini, olives, and basil. For the main event it’s a toss up between the inventive and unique Cheese Louise, Potato Carbonara, or fennel sausage pizzas. They don’t have dessert, but don’t worry: You won’t have room for it anyhow. 

6. Handsome Pizza

At Handsome, they use freshly milled whole grains grown in Oregon in their pizzas, baked goods, and bread. Go for the mozzarella, garlic, ricotta, and lemon-topped Rico Suave pie or keep it simple with their plain, which has tomato sauce and mozzarella and lets those perfect ingredients shine. It would be a mistake to skip dessert, as Handsome is equally known for their pastries. We love the pepita-garnished Fudgy Brownies and their signature rosemary chocolate chip Aunt Cookie.

7. Sunny's Pizza

New York is the style at Sunny’s. At this classic pizzeria they do the rare thing and deliver slices. Get a pepperoni, cheese, or one of the seasonally topped specialty veggie slices. If you’re in the mood for a full pie, grab an 18-inch Salsicca Pizza with fennel sausage, peppers, arugula, and mozzarella. Don’t forget a side of garlic knots with housemade pesto. 

8. Secret Pizza Society

The secret at Secret is that all their pies are vegetarian or vegan. The names are as inspired as their toppings. Get a Mount Boring with red sauce, basil chèvre, roasted mushrooms, and black olives, or the Chalupa Batman with Chipotle pesto, taco tofu, and fresh tomato. The Cheezy Bread and Mac n' Cheeze are also very much worth trying. 


9. Hotlips Pizza

It’s a good thing the highly craveable HOTLIPS has five locations, so it is always nearby. They cover all the bases with handcrafted meat, vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options. The pepperoni and sausage Meat Supreme will give carnivores what they want, while the vegetarians will love the roasted red pepper, artichoke, olives, spinach and mushroom-topped Nirvana. An ice cream sandwich for dessert? We’ll take the salted caramel + chocolate please! 

10. Old Town Pizza & Brewing

The 50-plus-year-old Old Town claims that it’s haunted by a ghost named Nina who wears a black dress and perfume. Luckily, she doesn’t make house calls! In her honor, order the alfredo- and chicken-laden Ghost pie. The tangy barbecue chicken is another great choice. Don’t forget the garlic knots.

Pinky's Pizza

11. Pinky's Pizza

Pinky’s pies are loaded with topping combos that shouldn’t work, but very much do. Take the Spring Chicken: bacon, chicken, red onions, and their signature arugula-walnut pesto, which also shows up in the Oh Fancy! alongside preserved lemons and fresh dill. Salads are more straightforward — Caesar, wedge, spinach. New Orleans fans should know they serve a mean muffaletta — a giant sandwich filIed with giardiniera, olive spread, provolone and a few ltalian deli meats — and those ingredients also adorn the muffaletta pizza. For dessert, you might want something baked by local favorite Miss Zumstein's Bakery, perhaps a chocolate bundt cake or a brownie. 

12. Sparky's Pizza

With six locations throughout the state, Sparky’s is an Oregon favorite. Founded in Sandy, Oregon, in 1999, this restaurant prioritizes organic Northwestern vegetables and daily, scratch-made dough. We love their extra-cheesy pepperoni, sausage, mushroom, and olive-topped Dream pie. Pizzas can be made in the 14-inch Large or an 18-inch Giant — plenty to share. 

13. Pizza Kat

Pizza Kat really outdoes themselves. The dough is naturally leavened; the ice cream is homemade; and most of the produce is local (like the smoked chanterelle pizza topping). That smoked chanterelle pizza (called the Get Wild) also has sweet onion ricotta and two kinds of mozzarella, while the Love & Hate pie is their take on the Hawaiian (ohhh, which some people love and some people hate), spiced up with Aleppo pepper. Now, back to that fresh-made ice cream. There are four flavors: strawberry-creme fraiche, banana caramel swirl, chocolate marshmallow, and a vegan coconut pineapple. All of a sudden, an impromptu ice cream party seems not only reasonable, but compulsory. 

14. Boxcar Pizza

The most niche on the list is Boxcar. They are slinging not only the thicker and chewier Detroit-style pies, but they make them vegan! Go for the faux-meat pepperoni, sausage, and basil-topped Animal Lover or the ultra-decadent Cheeseburger Pizza, all starring extra-melty coconut-based “mozzarella.” And the seitan Buffalo wings are a sleeper hit.

LoveVerona

15. LoveVerona Pizza & Pasta

True to its name, LoveVerona is known for their pasta as much as their pizza. The deliciously rich chicken alfredo pasta with artichokes is tops, and we also like the beef cavatini — which is like a deconstructed lasagne. There are nearly 30 pizza options, all of which are crusty and delicious: The pepperoni and the Hawaiian are two of the most popular.  

16. Assembly Brewing

Don’t let the name fool you: Assembly is about way more than brewing. Portland’s first Black-owned and operated brewery specializes in that thick crust, crispy, chewy, Detroit-style pizza. The classics, like pepperoni, feel fresh in their hands. If you’re craving veggies, go for the spinach- and feta-topped Popeye. They make all their pizzas in four or eight slice sizes, making them great for solo nights in or larger gatherings. 

17. Gladstone Street Pizza

This old-school pizza shop and lounge delivers quality at good prices: Pies start at $15 and sides are in the $3 to 4 range. Start with some focaccia, giardiniera, and a Caesar. Move on to the vegan-friendly Field Roast-topped I Heart You or the vegetarian Tri-Colour with peppers, chévre, and basil pizzas. Wouldn’t hurt to add the Vortex IPA, just one of their great selection of craft beers. 

18. Amalfi's Restaurant and Mercato

For more than 50 years, Amalfi’s has been turning out Italian classics like lasagna, spaghettini, spumoni ice cream, and their Legendary Combo Pizza, layered with salami, pepperoni, and sausage and cut into 12 diagonal pieces. Decidedly more modern are their signature cocktails, delivered ready to pour (just add ice!); favorites include the rye- and blackberry-based Blacker the Berry or the gin, cucumber, and basil Call Tyrone. 

19. Nonna Emilia Ristorante Italiano

Named after Nonna Emilia, who opened one of Portland’s first Italian restaurants just six years after emigrating from Florence in 1921, this spot still strives for the same homemade quality and enormous portions. There are plenty of classic options — including the pepperoni, mushroom & olive, and 3 cheese pies — plus a whole menu of Italian classics like Nonna’s famous veggie calzone, a pesto-dressed Caesar, and tiramisu for dessert. Gorge on it all; Nonna would be proud. 

top down - pizza

20. Ex Novo Brewing

You can feel great about ordering from this brewery and pizzeria because they donate 100% of net profits to community organizations like Oregon Wild. Their specialty square pizzas include the Meatzza, topped with pepperoni, sausage, meatballs, bacon, and mortadella, and the ultra savory black olive-heavy Phillip the Black. Add a fresh-baked chocolate chip cookie for dessert.

Author

Kyle Beechey