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New Haven-style pizza facts for kids

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New Haven-style pizza
Sally's apizza half tomato half with cheese (72126).jpg
A half-tomato/half-mozzarella apizza from Sally's Apizza in New Haven, Connecticut
Alternative names Apizza
Type Pizza
Place of origin United States
Region or state New Haven, Connecticut
Created by Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana
Main ingredients Pizza dough, tomato sauce, pecorino romano
A mozzarella pie with pepperoni from Sally's Apizza
Frank pepe clam pie
White clam pie from Pepe's in New Haven, Connecticut

New Haven-style pizza, locally known as apizza ( from Neapolitan ’a pizza "the pizza"), is a style of thin-crust, coal-fired Neapolitan pizza common in and around New Haven, Connecticut. It originated at the Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana and is now served in many other pizza restaurants in the area, most notably Sally's Apizza and Modern Apizza. New Haven and its distinct style of pizza have been called the "Pizza Capital of the United States" by One Bite founder Dave Portnoy.


In a New Haven-style pizzeria, a "plain" pizza is a crust, oregano, and tomato sauce with a little bit of grated pecorino romano cheese. A "plain" New Haven-style pizza may also be called a "tomato pie". Mozzarella is considered to be a topping; a customer who wants it must ask for it.

Pepe invented the "white clam pie". Pepe's restaurant served littleneck clams on the half shell at the bar, which he later added to the pizza. The white clam pie is a crust, olive oil, oregano, grated cheese, chopped garlic, and fresh littleneck clams.

What makes New Haven-style pizza distinct is its thin, oblong crust, characteristic charring, chewy texture, and limited use of melting cheeses. It tends to be drier and thinner than, but closely related to, traditional New York-style pizza. Both styles in turn are close descendants of the original Neapolitan style.

Cooking and serving methods

New Haven-style pizza is traditionally baked in a coal-fired oven at extremely hot temperatures above 650 °F (343 °C). It is sold whole rather than by the slice.


Although most commonly available in the New Haven area, New Haven-style pizza has begun to spread to other parts of the United States. It has been available in the Italian-American areas of Bridgeport, and other shoreline communities for many years; Frank Pepe’s also claims a location in the Italian-heavy New York area (Yonkers). New Haven-style has penetrated areas typically not known for large Italian-American populations, including towns in northern and central Connecticut, as well as other cities across the United States.

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