Pizza Perfect | Page 8 of 13

Pizza Perfect

These 10 Bethesda-area pizzerias have captured our attention

| Published:
The New Haven, a version of clam pizza. Photo by Stacy Zarin Goldberg.


Pete’s New Haven Style  Apizza

Joel Mehr, co-owner of Pete’s New Haven Style Apizza (pronounced “ah-beets,” he explains, which is a southern Italian working-class pronunciation of “pizza”), learned about New Haven pizza from his co-owner wife, Alicia, who hails from a town just north of the Connecticut city. The pies are typically thin crust, not perfectly round, tomato sauce-y and sometimes cheeseless. Before opening the first Pete’s Apizza in D.C. in 2008 (now closed), he talked the owner of a pizzeria close to New Haven into letting him work there for a few weeks.

At Mehr’s light-filled, 70-seat (plus 40 outside) Friendship Heights location, which opened in 2010, many pies are available by the slice and all are offered in 10-, 14- and 18-inch sizes. The de rigueur choice here is the New Haven, Mehr’s version of the clam pizza invented by Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana, which opened in New Haven in 1925. It’s a white pizza featuring shucked Rappahannock littleneck clams, lots of cheese (pecorino Romano and “mootsa-rell,” in New Haven-speak), garlic, oregano and extra virgin olive oil—then more olive oil and oregano after it’s baked.

Pete’s New Haven Style Apizza, 4940 Wisconsin Ave. NW, Washington, D.C.; 202-237-7383;

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