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Pie Perfection: 30 blockbuster pizzas in Greater Orlando

New York. Chicago. Orlando? While the first two cities are most closely associated with the best pizza in the country, our hometown does itself proud in that regard, too. Ask any local where his or her preferred pizza joint is, and you’ve probably just opened an hour-long debate over the merits of the crust here or the sauce there. No matter how you slice it, it’s evident that Orlando families are passionate about their pizza.

After eating our way through the Greater Orlando region, we are pleased to present you with our ultimate pizza-lover’s guide. From traditional to gourmet, we’ve selected our choices for the region’s 30 most remarkable pizzas. There are old favorites that have stood the test of time and some newcomers earning a fast reputation. In other words: You are going to be hungry. Enjoy!

Hey: Use these letter codes to pick your pie at a glance.

R:        Red Pie
W:       White Pie
V:        Veggie Pie
D:        Delivery
S:         By-the-Slice

Mediterranean at Anthony’s Pizzeria & Italian Restaurant in Orlando (Thornton Park) [R/V/D]

An Orlando original that traces its roots to New York, this Thornton Park icon has been in business since 1998. While their traditional pies are treats in their own right, Anthony’s really shines with its specialty pizzas such as this beauty, which combines sliced tomatoes, mushrooms, spinach, broccoli, onions, green peppers, black olives and fresh garlic for a veggie lover’s dream.

Don Tomasino at Tomasino’s throughout Greater Orlando [W]

If you’re looking to “join the family,” as this restaurant encourages its guests to do, there are few better ways to do it than with their signature masterpiece. Technically a white pie, it gets topped with breaded eggplant, spinach and tomatoes before being drizzled with a special pink sauce for finishing.

Fennel Sausage at Wolfgang Puck Grand Café in Lake Buena Vista (Disney Springs) [R]

Rather than try to say something about Wolfgang Puck that hasn’t been said before, we’ll simply tell you that this pizza alone is worth the drive to Disney Springs. The pie blends fennel sausage, roasted garlic and peppers, pepperoncini and herbed ricotta for a taste of Italy you’ll want again and again.

Jason’s Mom’s Slice at Lazy Moon Pizza in Orlando (UCF) [R/S]

Lazy Moon is known for its giant slices, but it’ll make you a whole pie, too—even for the one that’s specified as a slice. We’ve never met Jason’s mom, but this treat’s chicken, sautéed mushrooms, caramelized onions, tomatoes, baked ranch and baked “Jason’s Mom’s Sauce” speaks to her eclectic taste in good pizza.

Napoli at Armando’s in Winter Park [R]

Seafood fanatics, rejoice! Shrimp, calamari and shelled mussels team up with mozzarella and fresh plum tomato sauce for this scintillating choice. It’s appropriately named after the region from which the Winter Park eatery’s namesake founder—and its authentic Italian cuisine—hails. Look for a second location to open in College Park soon.

Chicken Pesto at O’Stromboli’s Gourmet Italian Eatery in Orlando (Audubon Park) [W]

White meat and white pizza pair together so very well, as seen in this pie from Audubon Park’s longest-running Italian eatery. In addition to succulent chicken and New York-style crust, the pizza boasts mozzarella, fresh garlic, tomatoes, basil and olive oil.

The Widowmaker at Prato in Winter Park

MetroWest Gourmet at Josie’s Pizza in Orlando (MetroWest) [R/V/D]

If this pizza’s name makes you think Josie’s knows MetroWest well, you’d be right; they’ve been serving that community for nearly a quarter century. This thin-crust pie is simultaneously simple and sumptuous, offering roasted red peppers, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes and fresh garlic.

Romano Ranch at Pizza Xtreme in Orlando (Dr. Phillips) [W/V/D]

Want to try the current ranch pizza trend for yourself? This eatery takes it to the “Xtreme” with creamy ranch sauce, mozzarella, diced plum tomatoes and fresh baby spinach. Between the dressing and the veggies, it’s like spring has sprung inside their pizza oven.

Carciofi Con Uovo at Bavaro’s Pizza Napoletana & Pastaria in Winter Springs [R]

Don’t worry; this choice is a lot easier to eat than it is to pronounce. The Naples-style pie is topped with San Marzano tomatoes, fior de latte, prosciutto cotto, artichoke hearts, egg, basil and extra-virgin olive oil before being baked in a wood oven. No wonder this extension of a popular Tampa eatery has made so many fans among locals.

Deliziosa at Terramia Italian Ristorante & Wine Bar in Altamonte Springs

Spicy Chicken at Ragazzi’s Pizza & Restaurant in Orlando (College Park) [R/D]

Can’t decide between the taste of hot wings or pizza? With this pie, you don’t have to. Choose from an array of traditional and exotic flavors for the diced chicken breast, and the chefs will throw in onions, bacon, roasted red peppers and mozzarella before cooking it to perfection.

Pizza Primavera at Pizzeria Valdiano in Winter Park & Orlando (Waterford Lakes) [W/V/D]

You’ve heard of pasta primavera, right? Well, the same rules apply for this pie, only the pasta gets replaced with authentic Italian white pizza. Everything else would be right at home in a bowl, including fresh spinach, broccoli, grilled onions, tomatoes and mushrooms.

Shishito Pepper at Luma on Park in Winter Park [R/V]

If we’re being accurate, this pizza isn’t technically called “shishito pepper” on the Winter Park eatery’s menu, but it is the first of the three listed ingredients. The blistered namesake peppers get paired with goat cheese and lemon oil for a pizza that won’t soon be forgotten—and that you won’t want to go long without.

Maui Wowie at Mellow Mushroom throughout Greater Orlando [W]

A national chain with long ties to Orlando, the Mellow Mushroom serves the ultimate take on a Hawaii-themed favorite. Starting with a pesto base, they add mozzarella, ham, jerk chicken, Applewood smoked bacon, pineapple and banana peppers before baking and dusting it with parmesan.

Carbonara at Tartini Pizzeria & Spaghetteria in Orlando (Pine Castle) [R]

What do you get when you cook some carbonara, remove the pasta and add pizza? This pie, which features pancetta, parmesan, shallot, egg, cream and black pepper. It’s inspired by the same old-world recipes that influence the rest of the restaurant’s menu.

Castello’s Special at Castello’s Gourmet Kitchen in Windermere [R/D]

When a restaurant puts its own name on a pizza, you know it thinks the pie is special, and we couldn’t agree more in this case. Grilled chicken gets the party started, and the red onions, red peppers, jalapenos and cream cheese keep it going till the last bite is gone.

Calamari at Fresco Cucina Italiana in Orlando (Dr. Phillips) [R]

Who’s squid-ing who? This Southwest Orlando eatery has more than 10 years of history, and this wood-oven pie is one of the reasons people keep coming back for more. Featuring homemade dough and sauce in the Naples style, it includes pomodoro, mozzarella and—as the name indicates—lightly fried calamari.

The Kitchen Sink at the Wine Barn in Winter Park

Girl and Fig at Brick & Fire Pizza in Orlando (Downtown) & Kissimmee [W]

Ready to go rustic? This pizza does so in a big—and tasty—way, starting with the name and continuing to its ingredients, which include shaved prosciutto ham, provolone and gorgonzola cheeses, sundried black figs, lemon caper-dressed baby arugula, garlic olive oil and balsamic syrup.

Campagnola at Francesco’s Ristorante & Pizzeria in Maitland [R/V]

Just as Francesco’s is one of Maitland’s culinary gems, this pie is one of the restaurant’s crown jewels. Cooked in a wood-burning oven at 700 degrees for a thin, crispy crust, it features a house-made pizza sauce base with grilled zucchini and eggplant, roasted red peppers, spinach and mozzarella.

A.P.B. Alfredo at NYPD Pizza throughout Greater Orlando [W/V/D/S]

We don’t know what Alfredo did to get this small, (mostly) local chain to put out an all-points bulletin on him, but we’re glad he did. The white pie is slathered with creamy Alfredo sauce before being topped with mozzarella, Italian herbs and garlic, delivering a taste that cheese lovers won’t want to resist.

Black ‘n Blue at Floridino’s Italian Kitchen in Winter Haven [R]

What’s black, blue and delicious all over? This pizza, which combines blackened chicken with onions, bleu cheese crumbles and mozzarella for a taste you won’t forget. It’s courtesy of the restaurant’s founder and namesake Michael Floridino, whose Naples roots continue to influence his creations.

Vegetable Pie at Tornatore’s Café & Pizzeria in Orlando (College Park) [R/V]

Once known as Caffe Positano, this eatery went through the Restaurant: Impossible ringer and came out better than ever. Piled with spinach, onion, mushroom, green pepper, black olive, tomato, eggplant and garlic, this winning pie might leave even the most dedicated carnivores musing a switch to vegetarianism.

Broccoli Rabe & Sausage at Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza in Orlando (Dr. Phillips) & Altamonte Springs [R]

Sure, Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza is a multi-state chain, but it started right here in Florida and has been part of Orlando’s pizza landscape for years. This signature creation starts with a traditional pie before adding bitter Italian greens sautéed in garlic and olive oil along with Anthony’s Italian sausage.

Spinachi at Red Oven Pizza Bakery in Orlando (Universal CityWalk) [W/V]

You’ll have to head out to Universal’s CityWalk to get a taste of this pizza, but once you do, you’ll probably agree it’s worth the trip. Starting with a white pie, they add fresh spinach, telaggio, parmigiana-reggiano and diced San Marzano tomatoes to put the taste of nature in every bite.

Campania at Flippers Pizzeria throughout Greater Orlando [R/V/D]

Think Flippers is just standard delivery pizza? Think again. Born, raised and primarily located in Greater Orlando, the chain has some tasty surprises up its sleeve. This veggie pie purees San Marzano tomatoes with a touch of sea salt before adding mozzarella, roasted grape tomatoes and red peppers, spinach, garlic, red onions, extra-virgin olive oil, basil and oregano.

Deliziosa at Terramia Italian Ristorante & Wine Bar in Altamonte Springs [W]

Looking for a pizza that will broaden your horizons? Look no further than this singular pie from host and owner Rosario Spagnolo. Homemade mozzarella, Pantelleria capers and caramelized red onions are matched with hearty Norwegian salmon, resulting in Norway invading Italy in a very tasty way.

Cuban at Pie-Fection in Orlando (MetroWest) [R]

Despite the name, this pizza doesn’t transform the popular sandwich into a pizza. Instead, it throws steak, onions, Cuban mojo and oregano onto a traditional red pie. If your sweet tooth needs tending, try one of Pie-Fection’s dessert pizzas while you’re there.

Shrimp & Bacon at Goodfella’s in Orlando (Alafaya Commons) [R/D/S]

Shrimp and bacon are two great tastes that go great together, and adding pizza makes it a toothsome threesome. The New York-style pie also includes light garlic and mozzarella cheese, resulting in a tempting taste of Italy by way of the bayou.

The Kitchen Sink at The Wine Barn in Winter Park [W]

You might not expect to find pizza at a place with a name like The Wine Barn, but you’ll be glad when you do. Cooked in a wood-fired oven, this artisanal pie lives up to its name with a filling combination of pork belly, Angus meatballs, salumi, caramelized onions, mushrooms, grape tomatoes, spinach and homegrown basil.

Boardwalk Eggplant Supreme at Boardwalk Pizza in Winter Park [W/V/S]

When a pizza place has been around for more than two decades like Boardwalk, you know they’re doing something right. Our favorite white pie from their menu pairs eggplant, onions and sliced tomatoes with a blend of herbs and spices for a taste that’s hard to beat.

Widowmaker at Prato in Winter Park [R]

We’re not sure why this pizza has such a threatening name; all we know is that it’s delicious. A true celebration of Italian cuisine, the pie features hazelnut romesco with fennel sausage, cavolo nero and farm egg—which leads us to believe it could be a great breakfast pizza, too.