In Point Loma and Ocean Beach, there are a surprising number of quality pizzas to choose from – all distinguished in some way.
From the popular New York-style thin crust, to the trendy white pies, to authentic Naples-style cooked in wood-fired ovens – you’re going to find a slice of love.
With National Pizza Day right around the corner on Feb. 9, the Peninsula Beacon decided to highlight some of the local pizzas that our readers may enjoy.
- If you are looking for a thin and crispy East Coast-style slice of pizza made with homemade dough, whole milk mozzarella and baked in fire-heated brick ovens, head to Surf Rider Pizza Co. in Ocean Beach.
“East Coast thin crust is the best because it's hand rolled, hand tossed and when made the Surf Rider way, it has a perfect crunch,” said Hilary Rossi, co-founder of Surf Rider Pizza Co. “We only use the freshest ingredients with all our home made recipes. It's all about being consistent and offering excellent customer service.”
What’s the most popular Surf Rider slice? “Aside from the almighty pepperoni,” Rossi said, “the signature Surf Rider pizza is one of a kind, especially in San Diego. It’s made with homemade roasted garlic, white sauce, gorgonzola cheese, Roma tomatoes and fresh basil.” And the best way to eat it? “Fold it, without a doubt,” she added.
Not that you need an excuse to eat more pizza, but to celebrate National Pizza Day on Feb. 9, Surf Rider is offering $2.50 slices. Go sample several slices of its unique East Coast-style pizza – and don’t forget to fold.
Surf Rider Pizza Co.
2163 Abbott St.
- Poma’s Italian Deli is a family run business located one block east of the Ocean Beach Pier. Founded by Leonard Poma in 1965, the deli is mostly known for its roast beef, torpedo, and meatball sandwiches. But don’t overlook their variety of pizzas.
“I think we have the most underrated pizza in Ocean Beach,” said owner Nick Poma. “Everyone who tries it can’t believe how good it is. They always come back for it.”
The most popular pizza is the Meat Trio with meatball, pepperoni, sausage, marinara sauce, and mozzarella. But Poma's Whitestone – with garlic, red onions, Capicolla, mozzarella, ricotta, and olive oil – is gaining in popularity.
“The Whitestone pizza is really taking off,” Poma said. “I think it’s one of the better pizzas around.”
Poma’s makes its own dough and marinara sauce every day, and uses fresh ingredients with quality cheeses for their pizzas, which are New York-style thin crust pies.
“People come for our sandwiches, but when they try our pizza, they love it,” Poma said.
Poma’s Italian Deli
1846 Bacon St.
- If you’re local, you already know about Pepe’s Italian. The small, neighborhood restaurant does a brisk business with Obecians who want a thin-crust quality pie.
“The crust is what makes our pizza so good,” said new owner Vanessa Perez. “It’s not super thin, but the bottom stays crispy.”
The most popular pies are the Bella and the Margherita. The Bella has marinara sauce, mozzarella, pepperoni, mushrooms and sausage. The Margherita is made with fresh tomatoes, garlic, basil, mozzarella and olive oil.
“We make our dough and marinara sauce here every day,” Perez said. “It’s always fresh.”
Pepe’s offers 8-inch personal pizzas, and has daily a special of $8 large pizzas from 3 to 5 p.m. They also have a bustling takeout business and utilize online order and delivery services.
“What makes this place so special is all the locals who keep coming back for our pizza and pasta,” Perez said. “Some nights, we know everyone at every table.”
1830 Sunset Cliffs Blvd.
- The latest Mr. Moto Pizza House opened on Rosecrans Street about five months ago (another one is opening in Ocean Beach this summer). With dining inside and out and the pizzeria’s trademark mustache on the storefront’s door handle, Mr. Moto serves up New York-style pie.
Owner Gibran Fernandez cut his teeth with Pizza on Pearl in La Jolla before branching out on his own. Fernandez discussed what makes his pie memorable.
“We have the largest variety by the slice, with gourmet toppings like rosemary, burrata cheese and truffle oil,” he said. “We’re very creative and very crafty and unique coming up with things that are new. We present pizza in a very nicely lit-up display case, along with a very fun, unique and cozy warm design.”
Regarding his recipes, he said: “Our dough is what really makes our pie. Fundamentals is what separates us from our competition. We have a very fluffy, airy, crafty artisanal crust. At the same time, it’s crispy.”
Mr. Moto promises a “very unique experience when you walk in the store.”
Mr. Moto Pizza House
1180 Rosecrans St.
- Pummarò Pizzeria on Scott Street is the real deal if you favor Neapolitan pie from Naples, Italy. Naples is the birthplace of modern pizza, which was developed in that city when tomato and other topics were added to focaccia, a flat bread known to the Romans, in the late 18th century.
Asked what distinguishes Pummaro’s pies from American-style offerings, chef Alberto Berin from Naples answered: “Most of the pizzerias in the U.S. use a gas oven. We use a wood-fired oven that cooks it really fast, in about two minutes.”
Discussing what else makes Neapolitan pizza special, Berin noted the natural yeast mixed in with sourdough used to make the pie’s crust takes up to three days to prepare. “It gives a lot of flavor and quality,” he added.
Pummarò Pizzeria uses fresh, local ingredients with mostly organic produce. The restaurant uses Parmigiano-Reggiano, mozzarella, prosciutto, mortadella and other authentic Italian products imported fresh from Italy.
1101 Scott St.
- Leucadia Pizzeria and Italian Restaurant on Voltaire Street “isn’t just your average pizza,” said general manager Debby Deason, noting the independent company isn’t part of a chain. “We have pizzas you would never ever think of being a pizza.”
The list of custom pies includes bbq chicken, rosemary potato, Thai chicken, roasted garlic, candied walnuts, goat cheese and Hawaiian.
“The two that really stand out to me are our margherita and pear-gorgonzola-arugula,” said Deason. “The specialty pizzas that Leucadia offers are just that – special.”
Leucadia makes pizzas to order, as well as having an extensive catering menu. Presently, pizza is not sold by the slice. Seven-inch, one-person mini pies are also sold. “We deliver. We’re fast and friendly,” said Deason.
Leucadia Pizzeria and Italian Restaurant
4161 Voltaire St.