First Impressions, Part 1: Vancouver’s Pizza


Hi Vancouver,

My name is Tom. I’m new in town.

I just moved here from my hometown of Ottawa. It was a bit of leap of faith because I’d never been to BC before, but it’s all paid off. You see, I’ve already fallen in love with your city.

Vancouver has a lot going for it: the ocean, a bustling downtown, a solid hockey team, and more. But as I clumsily learn my way through its neighbourhoods—all unfamiliar to me—I’m learning that there is so much more to this city than the obvious. As a Vancouver newbie, I’m finding that even the city’s ordinary is excellent. Even the mundane is thrilling. Yes, Vancouver, with my fresh set of eyes, I’m here to remind you to appreciate the little things—the lovely little things—because your city is full of them.

Case in point? Your pizza. Vancouver, as I’ve been thrilled to discover, is a slice of heaven.

I’ve always said that it’s hard to mess up pizza. Even bad pizza is good. But that doesn’t mean some pizza joints aren’t better than others. In every city, when it comes to pizza places, there are the good, and there are the amazing. But here’s the good news: having lived in Ottawa and Halifax, and being very familiar with Toronto and Montreal, I feel quite qualified to say that Vancouver has the best pizza in Canada.

Sure, you’ve got your share of the franchise favourites. Within your city limits are a handful of the usual staples—several Pizza Huts, a number of Dominos locations. In Vancouver, however, these restaurants are hopelessly outnumbered by a bevy of local chains. There’s Megabite. There’s 4 Brothers. There’s Freshslice. There’s a plethora of Ma and Pa shops like Commercial Drive’s Fire Pizza. There is, in this mouth-watering metropolis, a lot of pizza. And it’s all delicious. At each of the spots I’ve sampled, the crust finds the perfect balance between crispy and doughy. The toppings are fresh and original. The pizza, quite simply, is very, very good. You can take my word for it; I eat a lot of pizza.


For pizza pundits, the good news doesn’t end there. In Vancouver, the pizza isn’t just tasty, it’s also cheap. When I told a friend from Ottawa that in my new city, you can get a delicious, generously-sized slice for $1.25 every Tuesday (I’m looking at you, Freshslice), he didn’t believe me. I can’t blame him. In Eastern Canada, prices that good would cause cities to shut down—there’d be panic at the Parliament Buildings, chaos under the CN Tower, bedlam by the Biodome! I must admit, if I had known Vancouver had such scrumptious and affordable pizza, I would have headed west much sooner. This city is a pizza lover’s dream.

The moral of this newcomer’s story? Appreciate what you’ve got, Vancouverites. Not just Stanley Park and the Canucks, but all the little things that make your city so wonderfully unique. Every day, I’m overwhelmed by the small, but splendid details of this awesome city. I may have just arrived, but I’m already thrilled to be able to call Vancouver home.


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22 Responses to First Impressions, Part 1: Vancouver’s Pizza

  1. Jai

    If VanCity pizza tickles your fancy, then NYC or Chicago would blow your mind.

  2. Jeff

    I’ve lived half my life in Nova Scotia and now half in Vancouver and I’m a pizza fanatic. Nova Scotia’s pizza puts Vancouver’s to shame when it comes to “slices” you can buy on the corner in terms of taste. Sicilian remains one of my favorites on the pizza corner in Halifax. There are great “mom & pop” places that do hand tossed dough at every corner back east. The closest thing to that here is surprisingly Domino’s and Panago which brings a tear to my eye. Pizza is a religion run by Lebanese families which is has a doughy, cheesy style, with lots of toppings.

    A cheap slice all taste very similar in Vancouver with chains like the mediocre Fresh Slice everywhere which can by dry like cardboard with sesame seed crust, minimal toppings/cheese.The best slices I’ve found comparable to back east are 2001 Flavours and Romano’s downtown or Pizza Garden on commercial drive. We do have good Neopolitan at Via Tevere, Nicli, or Farina . Trilussa makes a great Roman style slice.

    Now this is real pizza.

    • Tom Taylor

      I love Halifax’s pizza too, don’t get me wrong! Sicilian is something else. It’s delicious. But I’m partial to slices with a little less cheese and thinner crust. So Vancouver’s is right up my alley. It’s delicious! Thanks for reading!

  3. I’m from Halifax too and consider pizza an essential food group. Excellent point, common chains aside, there are tons of great independent pizza shops in Vancouver. One of our ‘pizza corners’ is West Pender and Seymour. FM Classic Pizza is my favourite. (I’m having a home craving for Pizza Delight).

    • Jeff

      2001 Flavours is actually right next door to FM Pizza. Give ’em a try! :)

      How I miss garlic fingers with donair sauce and a real Halifax Donair….hah!

  4. Pizza lover

    If Commercial Dr is your area, you gotta try Uncle Fatih’s. It’s on the North west corner of Commercial and Broadway. Best pizza ever!

    • Tom Taylor

      Ever since this article was published, people have been telling me about Uncle Fatih’s. I know just where it is, but haven’t been yet. So, I’ll go right now! What kind of slice do you recommend? I’m looking forward to sampling this stuff!

  5. Pingback: First Impressions, Part 1: Vancouver's Pizza | Inside Vancouver Blog » - News aus dem Web

  6. danny

    Yeah I love to eat on those pizza joints! :) but the problem is parking :( ugh

  7. Charlie

    Yes I have eaten this pizza and agree it is delicious and great prices

  8. Vivian

    Hi Tom, welcome to Vancouver! I love meeting people who are new to Vancouver, because as a foodie, I love sharing everything that’s delicious in our wonderful foodie city!
    If you like our American pizza, you’ll love our array of authentic Italian pizza too! I’ve been an exec at the UBC Food Society since the start of my degree, and it’s only fueled my passion for food in Vancouver. If you ever need a dining buddy, shoot me an email! :) We’re all very friendly here, oh, and I guess I’m more or less pretty educated in Chinese food…that would be my forte, you can also ask me for suggestions of good places/things to eat/try! Welcome again!

    • Tom Taylor

      Hi Vivian,

      I guess I should have specified I meant American Pizza. Italian pizza is something else, though! I’ve been to Italy a few times, and last time I had some pizza– the authentic stuff– in a little town called Varazze. It was a life-changing culinary experience. In university, I took a class on Italian cuisine. It’s something I’m very interested in! I’ll have to sample the restaurants here in vancouver!

      On that note, it’d be great to meet with you for food sometime soon! I really appreciate that offer. Shoot me an email at and we can set it up :) Always nice to eat with good people!

  9. Pingback: I’m writing a new, five-part series for Tourism Vancouver’s blog, Inside Vancouver. | Tom Taylor Writes

  10. Swapnil

    Also, try the Indian style Pizzas with Ginger and Cilantro!

    • Tom Taylor

      That sounds delicious! Where can I find that?

  11. Matt Paugh

    I’m sorry, it’s almost impossible to find a good slice of pizza in Vancouver. Most of it is really cheap and you can taste it. there are restaurants that have excellent pizza when you are having a sit down, but slices? hardly ever. I’m from Halifax, and a slice of pizza there is the right size and price and is the decadent greasiness a piece of street pizza should be. Jesse’s, Alexandrias, Daddy Greens, Sicilian are all excellent examples of what a slice should be. Here in Vancouver FM Classic is the closest substitute in downtown, otherwise its Camy’s on 41 and Fraser, or Alibaba at Tsawassen terminal for me

  12. Nancy

    Hi Tom, You need to try authentic Neapolitan style pizza. There are a few VPN-certified places in Vancouver. I highly recommend Nicli Antica Pizza in Gastown & Via Tevere on Victoria Drive. A VPN (Vera Pizza Napoletana)-certified pizza puts the ‘North American-style’ to shame.

  13. Karen

    Hey Vancouverites, continuing on the topic of pizza, I will be in your beautiful city next week and was wondering if anyone has a suggestion for great pizza in the Davie neighbourhood ?

  14. Art

    try the pizza in the student union building in ubc

  15. Jacqueline

    You gotta visit Toronto’s Little Italy…I used to love eating pizza until I’m Celiac now. Toronto has the best pizza by far but everyone has their opinion

  16. Ron

    For crisp hot pizzas in Vancouver it’s Via Tevere, a wonderful neighbourhood family place, but for something special go to Steveston Pizza where Nader creates the most delicious pies of all.

  17. Lisa

    Sorry, but I have to disagree. I’m from New York City and the pizza in Vancouver cannot hold a candle to the real thing in NY! The closest I’ve had to decent pizza in Vancouver is Nat’s New York Pizza, of course. NY pizza offers hearty slices that are large and generous with cheese.