New England Bar Style Pizza: Recipe & Where To Find It

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If you’re from Massachusetts’ South Shore, I bet you’re familiar with the following scenario:

Your grandparents take you out to lunch. You sit in a corner booth, with plastic seat coverings that are slightly ripped under a stained glass Tiffany lamp, straight out of the early 90s. Some older woman who’s slightly grumpy whips out her pen and paper and takes your order:

Three ronis. Well done. Laced edges.

If this scenario is familiar to you, I bet you’ve spent a day or two at Lynwood, Town Spa Pizza, Buddy’s Union Villa, or the Cape Cod Cafe.

If you have absolutely no idea what on earth I could be talking about, allow me to educate you:

South Shore Bar Style Pizza.

At this point, you might be thinking: “Okay, pizza from a bar, right?

Wrong.

South Shore Bar Style Pizza is unique to Massachusetts’ South Shore for a multitude of reasons.

For one, it’s not just any pizza you can get at a bar. It has parameters.

It’s baked in standard, 12 inch bar pizza pans, with homemade pizza dough.

The crust typically tastes like a thick cracker, and is extremely crispy.

The cheese, unlike most other pizza places, is made up of a mix of ⅔ cheddar cheese and ⅓ mozzarella cheese (game changer).

The sauce and the cheese go directly to the edge of the 12 inch pizza pan, making it extra crispy. Some may even opt to “lace” the pizza to get burnt edges, which involves spreading the sauce between the crust and the edge of the pan.

Just typing this, I am drooling.

Because of these oddly specific parameters, the market for South Shore Bar Style Pizza isn’t exactly overly saturated. With the exception of a few locations, this really can only be found on Massachusetts’ South Shore.

When I went to college and talked to some of my friends about South Shore Bar Style Pizza, they honestly had no idea what I was talking about. They thought I had to have been talking about “personal pizzas,” like the ones you get from somewhere like Pizza Hut. That’s when I realized that it was strictly only a thing south of Boston.

People also get very defensive over their bar pizza. In the Facebook group, South Shore Bar Pizza Social Club, all hell breaks loose when some poor new guy posts his Neapolitan style pizza or New York slice from the dive down the street. Within minutes, the picture will be flooded by long time southern Massachusetts natives proclaiming one simple phrase:

NBP.

Not bar pizza.

(There also may be other extremely targeted profanities mixed in as well. You’re dealing with massholes, what do you expect?)

If the pizza doesn’t meet the exact parameters listed above, it’s simply not South Shore-style bar pizza. It doesn’t mean your pizza isn’t good, or that you didn’t get it from a bar, it’s just not this exact kind.

As stated before, there are also exceptions to the location rule. For example, Hot Box Pizza is located right in Somerville. The Model Cafe, located near my stomping grounds, is right in Allston. And if you wanted to go even further out, Slice Pizzeria and Wing House in Tampa is spreading the good word of bar pizza to all Floridians. And last but not least, all the way in Denton Texas is Mission Pizza, owned and operated by South Shore native Steve North.

How To Make Bar Pizza

Now, I’m not going to sit here and claim that I’ve created the most perfect pizza dough recipe known to man. But Toddzilla most certainly has. And if you check out his website for the recipe, he will show you the ins and outs of making it at home for yourself.

Some of his key takeaways are:

  • How to perfectly season your tomato sauce
  • How to achieve that perfect thin crust style of pizza that the bar pie is notoriously known for
  • The right oil to use (hint: it’s corn oil!)
  • The perfect types of white cheddar cheese to use, and how to grate it in your food processor
  • How you can achieve the perfect New England bar pizza in your own regular oven

I’m still learning how to perfect mine, but by using his recipe, I’ve come pretty damn close. My mom and I will top them with all of our favorite pizza toppings, take our sauce and cheese all the way to the edges of the pan, and carefully bake it to crispy perfection. My family loves our pizza nights, and each person will usually polish an entire pizza to themselves. To each their own, bar pizza is incredible.

The Top Places That Sell South Shore Bar Style Pizza

And now, for the moment you’ve all been waiting for (and that may have me canceled by bar pizza enthusiasts): Here is my ranking for the top South Shore Bar Style Pizza places in New England in no particular older:

1) Tinray’s Family Restaurant – Brockton, MA

 

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Un post condiviso da @coioteblu

2) Crisp – Walpole, MA

 

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Un post condiviso da South Shore Bar Pizza (@ssbarpizza)

3) J’s Flying Pizza – Bridgewater, MA

 

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Un post condiviso da South Shore Bar Pizza (@ssbarpizza)

4) O’Toole’s Pub – Whitman, MA

 

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Un post condiviso da Wicked Bites (@wickedbites)

5) Black Raspberry – Plymouth, MA

 

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Un post condiviso da Venus Guy (@venus2_guy)

6) Town Spa Pizza – Stoughton, MA

 

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Un post condiviso da Hungry Girls of Boston (@hungrygirlsofboston)

7) Lynwood Cafe – Randolph, MA

 

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Un post condiviso da Lynwood Cafe (@lynwoodcafe)

8) Ultimate Pizza – Easton, MA

 

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Un post condiviso da Ultimate Pizza🍕 (@ultimatepizzaeaston)

9) Buddy’s Union Villa – Easton, MA

 

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Un post condiviso da Buddy’s Union Villa (@buddysunionvilla)

10) Cape Cod Cafe – Brockton, MA

 

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Un post condiviso da Cape Cod Cafe (@capecodcafe)

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