Very few foods can cause shouting matches the way pizza can; and everyone has a personal favorite pie. Many pizza nerds get trapped by dogma, thinking that the “00 flour + San Marzano tomatoes + 900-degree oven” equation equals the perfect pie. But not Joe Beddia, whose pies were just named “The Best Pizza in America” by Bon Appétit.

Beddia says he doesn’t know if he would personally wait two hours for his own pizza, but customers do just that at his Philly shop, Pizzeria Beddia.

When Bon App editor Andrew Knowlton asks Beddia why he doesn’t use imported San Marzano tomatoes, he responds, “They grow great tomatoes right here in New Jersey that I really like, so I think it makes the most sense to use those tomatoes.”


Beddia’s other secrets to success: Lioni mozzarella, organic flour, extra virgin olive oil, sea salt, and a dough that sits overnight to develop flavor. Beddia says, “The only way to coax out the good flavor of the grain is with time—you can’t really cheat it.” He’s also careful not to push down on the dough too much, keeping the crust airy.

It’s a simple recipe, really. Knowlton notes, “I think the overriding thing here is not an insurmountable thing, it’s just people don’t want to put in the time.” Beddia adds, “The thing is, I’m not doing anything really special, I’m just sort of doing it the right way.”

A photo posted by joe beddia (@pizzacamp) on

We asked a couple of NYC’s foremost pizza experts if they’ve been to Beddia, and if they think the pizza there is the G.O.A.T. Legendary Brooklyn pizzaiolo Paul Giannone, of Paulie Gee’s in Greenpoint, says,

It’s a great pie and Joe’s a great guy. There are too many different styles of pizza to be able to say that one is the best. Also, I think it depends on the mood that you’re in. I brought my whole family to Joe’s one Sunday afternoon when he agreed to make pizza for us, so that I could get back to Brooklyn and Paulie Gee’s in time to open. I couldn’t ask for a better pizza experience.

Meanwhile, proprietor of Margot’s Pizza pop-up (and the founder of the now-defunct pizza blog Slice), Adam Kuban, says,

I haven’t been, unfortunately, but have heard it’s fantastic. This is going to make it that much harder to get to. And it already is notoriously difficult to get a pie there! Good deal for Joe. He’s worked hard and takes pizza very seriously. 

Bon Appetit spent a day with Beddia at his pizzeria to “see how he makes the pizza magic happen.” Watch the video below to learn more about what Bon App considers The Best Pizza in America.

[via Bon Appetit]