When the founding settlers of Tempe in Arizona picked the location for their new home they couldn't have chosen a better spot. Its close proximity to the Salt River meant there was sufficient water to create an irrigation system for crops in an otherwise arid desert environment. Farming remained the main industry in Tempe until the late 19th century when the Maricopa and Phoenix Railway arrived in the town and it entered into a boom era. Water has also played an important part in Tempe's development. The damming of the river created Tempe Town Lake, a two-hundred and twenty acre reservoir which provided a stable water supply as well as a recreational facility for the town's residents. The quality of life in Tempe was much better than in many other towns in Arizona and that was a key factor in attracting many migrants to relocate there. Among those who moved to Tempe were Italian families who opened restaurants to provide the locals with the well-known Italian comfort food – pizza.
Many of the Italians who moved to Tempe to set up their businesses were second-generation descendants of Italians from the Naples area of southern Italy and so Tempe is known for Neapolitan-style pizza. The recipe used to make Neapolitan or Naples-style pizza is very similar to a traditional thick crust, but has a few quirky differences. While the Neapolitan-style pizza is reputed to have inspired the creation of America's most popular type of pie, the New York-style, it can't be compared in appearance. The thick dough base has a bubbly, crusty edge that's brushed with olive oil and then baked in a wood-fired oven. The sauce is usually seasoned with basil and the cheese used should be buffalo mozzarella if the pizza is to be one hundred percent authentic. Cheese and cooking methods are frequently substituted, but that doesn't affect the end result too much as the pizzas in Tempe are always very tasty.
To get the best delivery in Tempe try ordering your pie from Spacoli's Pizza and Wings. The bonus is not only will you get a great pizza you won't have to pay extra for it as their delivery service is free. Spacoli's Pizza premises are located on North Scottsdale Road in a bungalow-style building set back from the road that at a quick glance looks more like a house than a pizzeria, but a pizzeria it is and a top-notch one too.
Inside Spacoli's is more focused on casual than fine dining, and while the chairs and tables don't appear comfortable enough for a lengthy sit-down lunch or dinner, that's of little importance when you're getting your pizza delivered. It's what's in the box when it arrives that counts and although Spacoli's range of pies isn't the most extensive, they're all guaranteed to be good.
When you want to pick up the best take-out pizza in Tempe head down South Rural Road to Clockwork Pizza. It's definitely not the largest pizzeria in the city by anyone's standards, but at Clockwork they know how to make pizza big time and have the five-star reviews to prove it. Consistently good reviews from customers is a difficult thing to achieve, but Clockwork does it with ease. Clockwork pizza is housed in a premises totally focused on take-out and delivery. There is a narrow counter and a few bar stools if someone wants to sit, but the only view they'll get is of the tiles on the walls. The better view is definitely Clockwork's pizzas. Whether you go for their Godfather Clock, Barbecue Chicken, Greek Gyro pizza, or a Green Time Veggie pie, you'll be hard put to take your eyes off it.
Give the kids a day of learning followed by some aquatic fun by taking them on a fifteen-minute drive east to Mesa. Tour around the Arizona Museum of Natural History or the Mesa Grande Cultural Park before heading to Golfland Sunsplash where there are mini-golf courses, some great water slides, and a wave pool. Finish the outing by picking up a pizza from the Twisted Pies Pizzeria on East Main Street.
Around fifteen miles north of Tempe is a village called McCormick Ranch where there's no shortage of things to do for adults or kids. Take a ride on a narrow-gauge railway at the McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park, get in a round or two of golf on one of several courses there, chance your luck at the Arizona Casino or go to see creatures of the underwater world in the OdySea Aquarium. If you want to eat pizza try one from the Pubblico Italian Eatery on North Scottsdale Road.
Phoenix is the state capital of Arizona and only a twenty-minute drive from Tempe. It's a lively, modern city with plenty of park areas, botanical gardens full of native desert plants, several first-class water parks, and enough galleries, museums, and theaters to keep you busy for a week. Take a hike through Papago Park, visit Phoenix Zoo or the Museum of Musical Instruments, then grab a pizza from the Pomo Pizzeria – Downtown Phoenix.
Q: 🍕 What restaurant has the best thin crust pizza in Tempe?
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Q: 🍕 What restaurant has the best New York-style pizza in Tempe?
Q: 🍕 What restaurant has the best veggie pizza in Tempe?