New Haven Pizza: Bar

On Thursday afternoon, I had the chance to stop in New Haven and visit one of my closest friends Christina, who began her PhD this past fall at Yale. I knew I wanted New Haven pizza for lunch, but I had a hard time deciding which place. Frank Pepe and Sally’s are the two classic options. I had been to Frank Pepe’s once several years ago. Christina was hoping to try Sally’s but unfortunately they are closed for lunch. I was more than happy then to try out Bar, which I had read several favorable reviews of.

Bar is located in a spacious building that used to be an auto showroom. Large windows flood the space with natural light. Bar doubles as a nightclub and they also brew their own beer. Dave tried the AmBAR Ale which had a pleasant caramel flavor. Bar keeps the pizza menu very simple. Diners have the option of a red pie, red pie with mozzarella, or a white pie with any of a dozen or so toppings.

We ordered a large red pie with mozzarella. I like to gauge a pizza’s merit beginning with the most basic incarnation. When I think of classic New Haven pizza, I think of oblong pies with a good amount of bubbling and char from either a coal or wood-fired oven. Bar, being not as old as Frank Pepe’s or Sally’s, has a gas-fired oven. The sauce and cheese, funnily enough, reminded me of a slightly thinner version of some of the New York pizza I grew up with. The sauce was pure and sweet, not heavily spiced or flavored with herbs. The cheese was on the saltier side, but not offensively so, and was applied evenly across the entire pie.

The crust was uniformly chewy. The edges were slightly crispy but nowhere near the crispiness of the slightly charred crust that comes from a coal-fired oven. I enjoyed the chew though, and the crust was substantial enough to support the large quantity of sauce and cheese.

I will hopefully get to the other New Haven spots in the near future to provide a more up to date comparison, but I was extremely pleased with my experience at Bar. The pizza was flavorful and well-made, and if you would rather do without the long lines and characteristic attitude at some of the older establishments, then Bar is the perfect choice.

254 Crown St
New Haven, CT  
Bar on Urbanspoon

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9 Responses to New Haven Pizza: Bar

  1. Megan says:

    I love the chewy crust on Bar’s pizza. I always judge a pizza place based on their plain cheese pizza too, but I hope you try the mashed potato pizza if you go back! I was supposed to get New Haven pizza when I was home for Christmas, but there was that huge blizzard and we didn’t end up leaving the house. I’ve been trying to keep a craving at bay ever since.

  2. Christina says:

    I will stop you at all costs from mashed potato pizza! It’s an offense to pizza I say, an offense!!!

  3. Daisy says:

    I’ve actually been here!! (but ate at Pepe’s and then went to Bar for some beers) it is such a cool spot and the pizza looks incredible.

  4. Yum! I want pizza now. And mashed potato pizza sounds amazing!

  5. Pingback: Claire’s Corner Copia | Free Food Boston

  6. Alexander V says:

    Love BAR pizza. Also love the service. Frank Pepes is still close to my heart and Sally’s has fallen due to their horrible service. Pizza is good at Sally’s but not worth the abuse. I’ve had plenty better. If you are in New Haven again and want to try something different than Frank Pepes or Sallys, goto 89 Howe St, and visit PIZZA HOUSE. It’s been a well kept secret in New Haven, as the Pizza there is uniquely Thin Crust PAN pizza. It is insanely delicious. Mushroom and Sausage is my favorite.

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