From the soft and doughy deep dish to the thin and crispy, people generally prefer different pizza bases. But whether you are strictly Margherita or prefer a rebel topping (I'm looking at you, the pineapple and jalapeño lovers), everyone can agree that a good pizza is the best take out option!!
After many years, the title of Beijing's Best Pizza has been returned to a non-chain pizzeria.
Georgia's Feast restaurant hosted 5 weeks of knockout stages for The Beijinger's Pizzalympics- before crowning the winner for 2021. Tickets were available to purchase by pizza aficionados for 1200RMB per table. Included in the cost, was 5 full size pizzas, free flow beer by Brooklyn Brewery and selected cocktails, a Beijing Pizzalympics piece of merchandise, and a selection of Olympic and Pizza based challenges and competitions with prizes. Held on December 18th 2021, the restaurant was packed to the brim with pizza lovers ready to get their feast on. We got there early to make the most of the new restaurant and free flow option!
During the previous 4 weeks of Pizza knockouts, the following were ready to compete for the title: QMex, PieSquared, Tube Station, Forno, and Pyro Pizza. Each pizzeria offered a different style of pizza and topping to reflect their style of pizza and origins.
QMex offered the Chipotle Chicken Pizza- A hint to their Californian owner's heritage and link to their Tex Mex menu. A traditional round pizza topped with spicy sauce, chicken, corn, and black beans, drizzled with sour cream. It was delicious, crunchy and soft with the right amount of spice. I would happily order this as an alternative to a burrito if I was at the restaurant. I was pleasantly surprised at how tasty it was. When left to go cold, it was better than when warm- definitely a good one to order before a night out so you can have the leftovers when you get home at 2am! 7/10
Pie Squared hosted the Motown Meatball- A direct link to the owner's Detroit upbringing. The Motown Meatball was a crispy square deep dish, made Chicago style with the cheese to the edges, a traditional Italian sauce base, beef and pork meatballs, and caramelised red onion. As an individual who dislikes tomatoes and tomato bases, I was amazed that I hadn't tried this pizza before. As someone who frequents Pie Squared for their BBQ Chicken pizza, I had found a new hangover cure. The dough was soft and crisp around the edges. Even when cold, the pizza lost no flavour. 9/10
Tube Station selected their Cheeseburger Pizza- Known for their HUGE sized pizzas, and nontraditional toppings, this offering was no different. On serving, the pizza was reminiscent of the traditional cartoon pizzas- yellow and colourful with lots of round elements. Topped with cheese, cherry tomatoes, sliced pickles, red onion, and ground beef, drizzled with a cheesy burger sauce. The pizza tasted very oily, and was like a downgraded Big Mac had been dissected on the top. When cold, the pizza took on an oilier texture and a saltier taste. The crust was soft but chewy. Good for a large party of people and perhaps a different topping. 5/10
Forno offered their La Regina- An Italian style pizza relating to their owner's Neapolitan background. This appetising prosciutto and tomato flatbread style of pizza was dressed with rocket (arugula for my American friends) and a parmesan sauce, at the table. Allowing the fresh peppery leaves to remain crisp and crunchy against the soft prosciutto and creamy parmesan. A great pizza when eaten warm- if wanting some for leftovers, the flatbread hardens and becomes hard to chew very quickly. 8/10
Pyro Pizza gave us the spicy beef pizza- A gesture to the love of hotpot in Beijing. The pizza was topped with a spicy tomato base under the cheese, red onion, grilled hotpot style beef, and rocket (arugula). I had heard so many good things about this pizzeria. So, I was disappointed with what they brought to the table. The base had a good texture, but the topping just wasn't to my taste. When grilled, the meat turned gristly and oily. The arugula added nothing to the pizza apart from adding some colour. I couldn't finish one slice. I waited to see if it changed my mind when cold, but to no avail. I would like to visit the store to try some of their other pizzas that may be more suited to my taste. It was a very Chinese offering, and not in a good way. 2/10
Each individual was given a sticker on entry to the Pizza Cup Final to vote for which pizza they deemed to be the most worthy. The public have spoken, and the pizza spoke for itself- Pie Squared won by a landslide!! Last time Pie Squared won was back in 2017.
Overall, out of 138 voters, Pie Squared won over 49 voters! That's more than a THIRD OF VOTERS, followed by Forno with 36 votes. Pyro managed 22, while QMex and Tube Station had 16 and 15 votes. Meaning the Beijing born Chinese owned Tube Station came in 5th.
The Top 15 Pizzas around the city as voted for by Beijingers:
Great Leap Brewing
The Pizza Show
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Copyright Lauren Toner 2019- 2022