As you can imagine, locals have a lot of opinions about where you can find the best pizza in Boston.
The original Regina Pizzeria in the North End and Santarpio’s Pizza in East Boston are perennial contenders, while newer hotspots like Area Four and Stoked have been giving these old-school joints a run for their money. But there's another North End favorite that can also be considered one of the best pizza shops in the city, and now it has a fancy new award to back it up.
The James Beard Foundation announced this week that Galleria Umberto is one of five recepients of the 2018 America's Classics award. The annual honor celebrates establishments "that have timeless appeal" and reflect "the character of their community" with their food.
In a release, the storied culinary arts organization praised the family-run restaurant for it's Sicilian-style pie, which has been a staple of the North End food scene since Galleria Umberto first opened in 1974. The foundation also seemed to like the fact that the shop still offers slices for less than $2 each, writing:
North End used to be a neighborhood of winding cobblestone streets. Italian immigrants began arriving here in the 1860s from Genoa, then Campania, Sicily, and Abruzzo. Umberto Deuterio founded Galleria Umberto in 1974. Sons Paul Deuterio and Ralph Deuterio run it today. The interior is straightforward, dominated by a counter and a hand-painted wall map of Italy. The Deuterios make arancini and calzones, but the main draw is crisp-edged squares of Sicilian pizza. When the pizza runs out, the shop closes for the day. They also close Galleria Umberto in July to maintain the business and spend time with family. Much has changed in the North End, but $1.85 here still buys you a slice and a taste of the old neighborhood.
Other winners include Sun Wah in New York City's Chinatown, Washington's Los Hernandez, Arizona's El Guero Canelo and Dong Phuong Bakery in New Orleans. Galleria Umberto and the rest of this year's America's Classics recepients will be honored at the annual James Beard Foundation Awards Gala on May 7 in Chicago.
If you go:
Galleria Umberto, 289 Hanover St., Boston