Information and History About Pizza in Detroit

  • 01 of 03

    Pizza-Chain Capital

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    Detroit holds a unique place in the nation’s pizza history. Not only is the city the pizza-chain capital, it created its own unique regional or Detroit-style pizza.

    Want some proof?

    Consider the fact that two of the top four pizza chains in the nation were spawned in or immediately around Detroit. In fact, according to PMQ’s Pizza Magazine, four of the top 20 pizza chains in the nation (in terms of sales) originated in the Metro-Detroit area:

    • #2 Dominos (with 7.47 percent of the national pizza market)
    • #4 Little Caesars
    • #11 Hungry Howie
    • #20 Jet’s Pizza

    Other well-known chains include Shield’s and Buddy’s Pizza.

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  • 02 of 03

    Detroit-Style Pizza

    According to Serious Seats, 21 regional varieties of pizza have been identified across the nation. So, what is Detroit’s claim to fame? The square, deep-dish pizza sold Italian-bakery style. In other words, you can order a square/slice over the bakery counter that is often served in tin foil.

    Square, Deep-Dish Pizza

    You may associate deep-dish pizza with Chicago, but Detroit’s style of deep-dish pizza is worlds apart from the Windy City’s. Chicago’s deep-dish pizza is more of a pie, while Detroit’s deep dish is square with a thick, doughy crust that is often twice baked and served golden brown around the edges. The sauce is also served on top of the cheese and other ingredients.

    Origin and History

    The Sicilian-style pizza was originally introduced as a new menu item in 1946 at Buddy’s Rendezvous on Conant, a tavern and one-time blind pig owned by “Gus” Guerra.

    More Information:

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  • 03 of 03

    Best Pizza in Detroit

    While having a big slice of the national pizza market is all well and good, taste is important, too. Four of the top-tasting pizzas nationally, at least according to Alan Richman of GQ Magazine in his The 25 Best Pizzas You'll Ever Eat, are located in the Metro-Detroit area:

    • #13 Luigi’s “The Original” in Harrison Township
    • #15 Buddy’s in Detroit
    • #21 Tomatoes APizza in Farmington Hills
    • #24 Niki’s in Detroit