City Hall Plaza will be a pizza lovers paradise this weekend when the Boston Pizza Festival 2018 kicks off on Saturday afternoon. After a successful debut in 2017, the all-you-can-eat, two-day fest is back and bigger than ever. Here’s everything you need to know for this year’s Boston Pizza Festival.
What's new at Boston Pizza Festival 2018?
Fans can expect more space and more food when the fest returns this weekend. While you had to buy pizza by the slice at the the inaugural event, the 2018 installment will be all-you-can-eat. The sample slices will be half the size of last year's slices so people will have more room to try as many styles of pizza as possible.
"Included in the ticket is unlimited sampling," says organizer Raffaele Scalzi. "We’re going to have close to 20,000 sample slices per hour."
In addition to the change of format, the fest will take over a bigger portion of City Hall Plaza in order to accommodate the more than 20,000 fans who are expected to show up over the course of the two days. The lines for entry and drinks should be a bit shorter this year, though, as more access points have been added to the layout.
"We’re basically tripling everything from last year," Scalzi says. "We want to make getting into the event as smooth as possible."
The festivities will also include live music, demostrations, games and more.
What kind of pizza will be at Boston Pizza Festival 2018?
This year's fest will feature pizza from 30 different vendors that will each bake their pies fresh using one of 30 handcrafted, Marra Forni ovens on site.
"We don’t deliver anything," Scalzi says. "Everything is on site. It’s made fresh."
The vendor list includes local favorites like Papa Gino's, Oath, Blaze, Antico Forno and dozens of others, as well as a trio of pie makers who hail from Naples, Italy. Scalzi expects the lines to be a bit longer for Starita a Materdei helmed by pizza master Antonio Starita.
"They are a staple in Naples," Scalzi says. "People actually call him Don Antonio and kiss this guy’s hand."
Besides the array of "real, authentic Neapolitan pizza," guests can also expect a few funky options like the pizza cones by Kono Pizza, which are basically ice cream cones made with a pizza dough and toppings. Vegan and alternative crust options will be available as well.
When is Boston Pizza Festival 2018?
The food-filled fun will take place Saturday and Sunday, July 7-8, from noon to 8 p.m. at City Hall Plaza. Tickets for each day are $35 in advance and $45 the day of, while kids between 3 and 10 can attend for just $20. Children under 3 can attend for free. For more information, check out bostonpizzafestival.com.