San Francisco is an incredible city - especially for foodies. They’re widely known as a Mecca of flavor, serving incredibly complex dishes alongside classic comfort food, and, yes - pizza in all its greasy glory. Whether you’re a bay area native or just along for the ride, finding the best San Francisco pizza is no easy feat. So today, we’re cutting out the work for you and bringing you the five best San Francisco pizza joints in one handy lil’ list.
Buckle up, kiddos - this is gonna be a wild ride.
If you're not in the bay area, check out our guides to the best pizza in Seattle (Belltown), Chicago, and Boston!
First up on our list is Pizzetta 211, as they are truly the best San Francisco pizza. They’re a simple joint with a simple goal - serve pizza as it was meant to be; with fresh ingredients, simple construction, and most importantly - love. Something worth noting is that they’re a tiny spot with only four tables. While this allows them to focus on serving the absolute best to each customer, it also means that you may have to wait for your slice.
If you want a pie that’s personally crafted for you, using truly seasonal ingredients, with a menu that never remains the same, Pizzetta 211 is your stop.
Golden Boy Pizza is a longstanding name in the San Francisco pizza scene, having opened its doors in 1978. They have two primary distinguishing features - they craft focaccia for the crust in true Sicilian fashion, and they serve square pizzas. Each pie is topped with incredibly unique offerings, ranging from clams and garlic to the usual suspects of cured meats, Italian cheeses, and wildly fresh produce filled with flavor.
Ultimately, Golden Boy is on our list of the best San Francisco pizza joints for a reason. If you’ve never had a Sicilian pie, trust Golden Boy to deliver the goods.
SoMa is a wildly popular group of top-notch restaurants spanning from coast to coast. They’re known for doing everything to the highest degree of excellence and have earned countless awards for that dedication. Montesacro SoMa is the world’s first “Pinseria,” serving Roman-style pizza that takes inspiration equally from the Italian town of Montesacro and the concept of “fraschette,” highlighting community-building over good food and wine.
Montesacro SoMa is the gleaming golden child of the bay area, serving seasonal, local produce alongside top-notch Italian imports.
The sad truth about pizza is that while all pies do matter, not every spot can earn a top place on the list. This is why we reserve the final two entries of our “top five” lists for people who do things differently. Below, you’ll find joints that eschew the norms, opting instead to do things their way, for better or worse.
Don’t mistake their placement as a sign that they’re lesser pizza artists - these are still some of the best San Francisco pizza joints around.
Tony’s Pizza Napoletana is, unsurprisingly, the love child of Tony Gemignani and his Italian roots. They’ve won numerous awards in the over three decades he’s been slinging pies, including Best Pizza Margherita at the Naples World Pizza Cup and several other Italian awards for excellence. What sets Tony’s apart (other than the swathe of awards) is their pie style. While they (clearly) create Neopolitan pies, you’ll also find regional favorites from Detroit, Sicily, New York, and St. Louis, as well as Roman-style and gluten-free.
Give Tony’s a try the next time you can’t decide on just one style of pizza - after all, you really can have them all…
The final entry on our list is Flour + Water. They’re an upscale Italian eatery that serves precisely two types of food - pasta and pizza. Each entry on the menu is made daily, by hand, from scratch, and with local ingredients. Each item on the menu takes inspiration from multiple northern Italian regions, drawing on co-chefs Ryan Pollnow and Thomas McNaughton’s bay area lives.
Flour + Water is, realistically, some of the best Italian in the state. Even if you’re not in the mood for pizza (though that really shouldn’t be possible), Flour + Water is, simply put, an experience unlike any other.