New Rochelle may now have a population numbering almost eighty thousand but it hasn't always been that way. New Rochelle was first settled in the 17th century by thirty families of French protestants who had fled persecution in their own country. The community took a while to begin to thrive and it wasn't until an English merchant gifted the settlers land he had acquired from the local Native tribe that town really started to take shape. By the late 1900s, New Rochelle had attracted a considerable amount of migrants and although the majority were French, there were a few other nationalities too. The main impetus which changed New Rochelle from town to city happened when a train station was built there for the Metro North line. New York City became more easily accessible and folks were able to travel there to work while still residing in New Rochelle. In the mid-1960s a few Italian families recognized New Rochelle's business potential and moved to the city to open their restaurants. Pizza has been a major part of New Rochelle's food scene since then.
With New York being a mere twenty miles south and with the city's pizzerias opening during the time when New York-style pizza was all the rage, you might expect New Rochelle to be known for New York-style pizza. It's not. New Rochelle is known for a completely different type of pie which is Sicilian-style. Sicilian-style pizza is a type of pie that, as the name suggests, originates from the Italian island of Sicily. Some of the first Italians to bake pizza in New Rochelle were first-generation descendants of families who had made the hard journey across the Atlantic to start a new life in America. As with most Italians, they were rightfully proud of their culture and paid homage to the homeland by cooking recipes handed down through the generations. For the locals of New Rochelle that was a win-win situation as Sicilian-style pizza is a thick, spongy-based pie coated with a rich tomato sauce that's both tasty and appetite satisfying.
There's an almost endless list of pizzerias in New Rochelle that bake delivery pizzas. To get the best delivery pizza in New Rochelle the one to order from is Cestra's Pizza 4 on Main Street. This pizzeria has a super range of pies that they'll bake in regular, New York-style, thin-crust, and grandma-style so you pretty much get a pizza exactly how you want it. Cestra's Pizza 4 occupies the lower level of a brownstone which has a wide glass frontage decked out with pizza-related posters. The only part of the interior that's not short on space is the kitchen which is okay as that's where all the important work is done. From there they dispatch pies like their Chicken Vodka, Fresh Tomato and Mozzarella, Meat Lovers, and Veggie Special. Whichever you choose to have you'll find they're all great.
If you've been playing a round of golf at any one of the several different courses in the north of the city on a frequent basis, you'll quite possibly already be in the know about where to get the best take-out pizza in New Rochelle. For those not in the know, the best take-out pizza in New Rochelle comes from Sal's Pizza II on Quaker Ridge Road. Sal's Pizza II's premises face onto the parking lot of the Quaker Ridge Shopping Center. The lot is quite often almost full so you may need to search for a space. Are all the folks from those parked vehicles doing their marketing? No, they're more likely to be queueing for a pie at Sal's. From the kitchen of this trattoria-style joint they send out some superb pies in both thick crust and Sicilian-style. Try the Clam and Garlic or the Chicken Parm and it won't be long before you're queueing up for more.
When you want something different to your everyday routine in New Rochelle, skip out of town on the I-95 N and go to White Plains. In White Plains you'll be able to browse world-class art at the Neuberger Museum of Art, visit the Kensico Dam Park and watch the water cascading over the wall, explore the thirty-plus acres of the Greenburgh Nature Center or the Cranberry Lake Preserve. Before you go for lunch at the Famous Famiglia Pizzeria on Mamaroneck Avenue, learn a little more about the city at the White Plains Historical Society Museum.
If you think Yonkers is just another big city full of crammed-together high rises where there's nothing of interest to see, maybe it's time you went there for a visit. Go to Tibbetts Brook Park in Yonkers and you'll be able to enjoy some amazing outdoor recreation time in very scenic surroundings. If you want to entertain the kids you can take them to the Legoland Discovery Center or the iFly Indoor Skydiving Center. Make a night of it by catching a show at any one of the theaters on Broadway before going for a pizza at Silvio's Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria which is on the same street.
Go to Tarrytown which is around twenty miles northwest of New Rochelle and you can make yourself green with envy about how the other half live by visiting the Lyndhurst Mansion. When you've had enough of admiring the wealth on display take a drive over the Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge to admire its incredible structure. Chill for a while in the Blauvelt State Park then head back to Tarrytown for a pizza at Main Street Pizza of Tarrytown which is on Broadway – only joking - it's on Main Street.
Q: 🍕What restaurant has the best calzone pizza in New Rochelle?
Q: 🍕What restaurant has the best veggie pizza in New Rochelle?
Q: 🍕What restaurant has the best gluten-free pizza in New Rochelle?
Q: 🍕What restaurant has the best Grandma-style pizza in New Rochelle?