By Erick Prince
Dec 17, 2020
THE LAST DECADE HAS SEEN AN EXPLOSION of international restaurants and cuisines in Bangkok, with everything from Michelin-starred chefs to fast food chains moving in from around the globe. The pizza game is seriously strong, with the most outstanding options here having started as small passion projects prioritizing authentic, imported ingredients, flavors and techniques. We say, you can’t go wrong with simplicity and service. And so, here are our five favorite pizza stops in Bangkok.
Specializing in neo-Neapolitan pizza, and without the pressure of a standalone restaurant, Pizza Mania has focused on elevating pizza delivery in Bangkok with its quality, speed and technical excellence. Tennessee native Russell Davis, formerly a Peace Corps member who taught himself to make pizza online, has been running the show for a decade. “In the pizza business, they say make what you want to eat,” he says, “so I followed that advice and it’s served me pretty well.” We agree. The crust is slightly chewy inside, with crispy edges brushed with olive oil that gradually softens towards the middle, and it’s all held together by a generous helping of sauce that’s just the right amount of sweet, plus gooey cheese. Looking to keep things traditional? Try Salami & Sausage. But if you want to turn things up a bit like me, The 240 is the way to go, ablaze with pickled jalapenos, creamy French goat cheese, and smoked bacon. We especially recommend their once-a-month offer of Detroit Style pizza. This is one of the only places you’ll find this savory treat in Thailand: think thick, buttery crust in a square cast-iron pan, the dimensions cooking the dough to a perfect combination of crisp edge and pillowy inside. Must pre-order. Pies Bt260-430. pizzamania.co.th; @pizzamania_th
There are very few slices outside New York City that can transport you there like Chef Bing’s. Combining his time living and working in the Big Apple with only the best ingredients, Chef Bing has made his restaurant a must-visit for all of Bangkok’s pizza enthusiasts. In most ways a stickler for tradition, he specializes in 18-inch-large pies and classic pork-and-beef pepperoni sourced from the United States—although, bovine-averse Thai friends and others, do note that he’s added a special pork-only cupping pepperoni to his menu of late. All Bing’s pies are a portal to the traditional US$2 slices that in New York feed everyone from titans of industry to broke college students. We recommend you try them with his fantastic buffalo wings—the perfect pairing. Pies Bt420-720. @chef_bing
When using high-quality ingredients and proven techniques, simple is the only way to go. Peppina strictly adheres to practices that preserve the traditions of Neapolitan Pizza, so much so that it is the only restaurant in Bangkok to be inducted into the history- and method-minded Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana. (Little wonder that Peppina’s founders are also behind beloved, village-recipe Roman trattoria Appia.) Witness their fantastic dough, which comes out of their gorgeous, imported wood-fire oven living in that fine space between crunchy and soft. The perfect base for a simple yet diverse selection of toppings. Each pizza is topped with imported ingredients that give Peppina’s pizza a taste that’s hard to find outside of Italy. San Marzano tomatoes explode with a sweet and slightly sour profile. Mozzarella fior di latte adds a light cream. Charcuterie like spicy salami kick your pie up a couple of notches. Which is why we recommend you try the Diavola; it truly gives you a bit of sugar, spice, and everything nice. Wash it down with one of their well-made cocktails at any of their several locations around Bangkok—though if you can, visit the original on Sukhumvit 33 for delicious grilled meats and seafood, too. Pies Bt380-780. peppinabkk.com
With Italian roots, fresh Italian and French ingredients, and an artisanal approach to pizza making, chef Luca Appino of long-standing society-set favorite fine-diner La Bottega di Luca shows why he’s one of Italian cuisine’s standard-bearers in Asia. Massilia is meant to be coastal Mediterranean pizza—hence their star sea urchin pie. The pizza itself, of which there are now 23 menu options, is actually relatively light, and Luca is pivoting towards a healthy-ish thrust these days. All pizzas are made with organic Italian flour, bio extra virgin olive oil, San Marzano tomatoes, and other ingredients sourced directly from Italy; they’re all available gluten-free, and Massilia has been working on reducing the calorie count with thinner-crust options. For non-pizza picks: get the mortadella sandwich or the casoncelli al tartufo. Pies Bt290-740. pizzamassilia.com
Pizzeria Mazzie embraces old-New York’s “sit down” style of pizza restaurant (perhaps you’ve waited in those endless lines at Lombardi’s or Grimaldi’s?), and the flavor profile of legendary pizza storefronts there like Di Fara and Totonno’s. It upped the game in Bangkok’s pizza scene with a mix of adherence to decades-old practices and new-school techniques, equipment and ingredients. Natural leavening techniques are used for the dough, which is cooked in a handmade oven from Italy. Japanese red cedar wood proofing boxes to add a unique “sweet” taste, while locally sourced hardwood imparts Mazzie’s signature light smokiness during the high-temp cooking process. We recommend The Hot Hipster, which sings with a spicy Tuscan salami that you won’t soon forget. Plus they’ve got the smoothest Aperol spritz in town. Pies Bt290-540. pizzeriamazzie.com
“Extra Toppings” honorable mention award to Gallery Pizza, which will deliver you their Oakland-inspired pies until 4 a.m. every day and has invested in state-of-the-art customer service tech to go along with those friendly voices on the other end of the post-midnight phone line. Lifesavers, these guys.