The best places in Portland for the best meal: Pizza

Best pizza in PortlandWhere can you get the best pizza in Portland?

Portland is different from other urban environments in the country. And proud of it. This is, after all, the motherland of the maple bacon doughnut and Darth Vader on a unicycle playing flaming bagpipes. And pizza is no exception. Portland has a dichotomy of pizza establishments in the city. On the one side there are the upscale, dine-in pizzerias with reservations and long wait times. Many of these use artisan cooking methods to create unique pies with top-of-the-line ingredients, attemping to restore pizza to the brilliance of Italy. On the other side are the casual pizza joints. These flaunt conventional norms in place of personality. So which pizza place is the best in all of Portland? It depends on what you’re looking for. The answer is different for fine dining, eating in, carryout & delivery, and well, being the most Portland.

 Who has the best pizza for fine dining in Portland?

Fine dining restaurants require reservations, sometimes weeks in advance. Pizza isn’t normally the kind of thing most people go to upscale restaurants for, and none of the top choices feature pizza as the main attraction, but pizza has become one of the items they’re known for.

  • Nostrana has ever-changing menus based on the fresh ingredients they have on hand. Pizzas (Pizze on the menu) are served in the traditional Italian style–uncut–and with hand-made mozzarella. Toppings like Dungeness crab, chevre, and maitake mushrooms are in place of more traditional choices.
  • Pazzo Ristorante makes everything fresh daily. With a smaller selection of pizza, customers can expect premium ingredients on their personal pie.
  • Piattino is a more rustic dining experience and is one of the few Italian restaurants in Portland to put pizza as one of their specialties. Using in-house mozzarella and sauce along with ingredients like pancetta and black truffle oil, few can match these classy pies.

And the Winner is:

Nostrana. A truly fine-dining experience, Nostrana has a complimentary mix of class and an authentic Italian feel that’s hard to match.

Who has the best pizza for eating-in for Portland?

Eat-in pizzerias are as much about the experience as they are about the taste. This could include great service, entertainment options, a unique theme, and more.

  • Life of Pie serves 11-inch pizzas exclusively made with house-made mozzarella. With an impressive 4.5 stars and Yelp and one of the best deals in Portland for a $5 Margherita pizza during Happy Hour (11AM-6PM), they have an oven that can easily reach temperatures of over 1000 degrees.
  • Ken’s Artisan Pizza serves its dine-in customers devoutly. After the success of Monday Night Pizza at the artisan bakery, Ken’s Artisan Bakery expanded to open up a dedicated pizzeria. All pizzas are 12 inches and cooked in a wood-fired oven for quick and precise baking.
  • Apizza Scholls has been a staple of the Portland community for many years. Always popular, Apizza Scholls makes a limited amount of dough daily and consequently has had to turn customers without reservations away. With 11-inch for lunch and 18-inch pizzas for dinner and classic arcade games, they offer a little bit of everything.

And the Winner is:

Apizza Scholls. Along with pizzas large enough to feed multiple people, Apizza Scholls uses fresh ingredients and has video games to help speed up the inevitable wait time.

Who has the best pizza for carryout & delivery in Portland?

Sometimes when you want pizza, all you want is the food. And it helps even more if the food comes to you, especially after a long day at the fun and entertaining Portland museums! But it’s also important that it tastes phenomenal, and since you aren’t paying for the atmosphere, it needs to be affordable too.

  • Pizzicato is a combination of casual and gourmet pizza. These pizzas use gourmet toppings but also emphasize the takeout and delivery aspect. And with absolutely free delivery after 4 PM, it’s a great place to get pizza with a minimal amount of effort.
  • Straight From New York Pizza has a little bit of everything. Come by between 2 and 4 on weekdays for a cheap slice, or try one of the many specialties such as Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, a combination of tomatoes, onions, artichokes, and garlic. They also deliver in Portland so you don’t have to leave the house.
  • 21st Century Pizza tries to live up to its name. With late night slices, homemade sauce, and an intricate online ordering system, 21st Century Pizza brings ordering pizza delivery to the new millennium. And with daily specials, subs, and even cookies, ordering pizza has never been easier.

And the Winner is:

21st Century Pizza. Carryout & Delivery should be cheap, easy to order, and taste good. With an online ordering system, customers can get a pizza delivered to their door without having to talk to a human being until their pizza arrives. 

But which pizza is the most Portland?

It’s hard to define what exactly it means to be Portland. The trendy, yet nonchalant attitude with an extra helping of the unusual is seen just about everywhere. And pizza is no exception.

  • Best pizza PortlandHandsome Pizza creates pizzas that look beautiful. And if they look great, they often taste great. With self-described “pizza nerds” creating your meal, lamp shades made from comic strips, and pizza specialties with names like Rico Suave and The Gillian Richardson, it’s a Portland natural.
  • Pizza Jerk is more friendly on the taste buds than it sounds. With one of the most unusual pizza websites around, Pizza Jerk created a custom background melding pizza into the PDX carpet. With foods ranging from pizza fries to Eggplant Parmigiano pizza, there are plenty of choices–if you can decipher the menu.
  • Baby Doll Pizza seems more traditional at first glance, but has plenty of peculiarities to set it apart. The name Baby Doll is in reference to a swanky bar the owner’s grandfather once owned. Add that to a navigation bar on the website for Beer Delivery–with no mention of delivering pizza–then you have a truly Portland establishment.

And the Winner is:

Pizza Jerk. With an unflattering name, a strange website with purposefully clashing coloring, yet still having high-quality food, Pizza Jerk is the most Portland pizza establishment with a web presence. 

Directions from Pizza Jerk to Moving Forward Restoration LLC

Pizza Jerk
5028 NE 42nd Ave, Portland, OR 97218

Drive along NE 42nd Ave
4 min (1.1 mi)

Take NE 37th Ave to NE Halsey St
4 min (0.9 mi)

Take NE Cesar Estrada Chavez Blvd to SE Holgate Blvd
15 min (4.0 mi)

Moving Forward Restoration LLC
2528 SE Holgate Blvd, Portland, OR 97202