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Pick any city on the U.S. map and chances are that said city has some sort of unique pizzeria with an anomalous approach to making its special pie. From the inches-thick cheese in Chicago to flecks of garden -grown basil on top in California, here are a few options to try the next time you’re on the road.


California (statewide)
Specialty: Locally sourced/seasonal/fresh ingredients
In most Californian dishes, local and seasonal ingredients are key. Pizza is no exception. At Diavola Pizzeria & Salumeria, which opened in July, pizzas are prepared in a wood-burning Mugnaini hearth oven imported from Italy, and many of the toppings (including zucchini flowers and mozzarella di Bufala) are sourced from three local farms. 21021 Geyserville Avenue, Geyserville, (707) 814-0111, www.diavolapizzeria.com

Chicago
Specialty: Deep-dish
Pizzeria Uno invented the deep-dish pizza in 1943. What looks like an inch of pure cheese and a heaping amount of chunky tomato sauce is spread over a thick handcrafted crust (made fresh daily in the restaurant) and then cooked in a deep pan that’s coated in oil (to give the effect of the pizza being fried on the bottom). Although Uno Chicago Grill is now a nationwide chain, the original Pizzeria Uno still stands in the city’s River North neighborhood. 29 East Ohio Street, (312) 321-1000, www.unos.com

St. Louis
Specialty: Thin crust
In 1964, Marge and Ed Imo opened the first Imo’s Pizza and introduced locals to a new thin-crust style of pizza. Today, about 50 Imo’s Pizza locations in and around St. Louis still make Marge and Ed’s crispy-crusted pizza, which is topped not with mozzarella but with St. Louisian Provel. It’s then cut into squares. St. Louis and surrounding area, www.imospizza.com

Providence, Rhode Island
Specialty: Grilled
In 1980, Al Forno’s co-owner and co-chef George Germon was having a conversation with a local fish-market employee who had seen pizzas baking in a wood-fired oven in Italy -- only the employee mistakenly called the oven a grill. Germon’s imagination took over and voilà, grilled pizza was born in the United States. A round pie is placed over the fire of a grill and flipped once as the bottom stiffens. Toppings (including tomato sauce and a mixture of pecorino romano and fontina cheeses) are then strewn very thinly on the grilled side. 577 South Main Street, (401) 273-9760, www.alforno.com

New Haven, Connecticut
Specialty: Apizza
New Haven locals who originally emigrated from Naples call their version of pizza “apizza.” The thin, crisp crust topped with either plain tomatoes or grated pecorino romano cheese and garnished with garlic, oregano, and anchovies (in other words, no traditional mozzarella) originated at Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana. Pepe’s, which opened in 1925, is one of the country’s oldest pizzerias, most famous for its white pizza topped with freshly shucked clams (to each his own). 157 Wooster Street, (203) 865-5762, www.pepespizzeria.com

SIX-SLICE TOUR OF THE BIG APPLE »Navigating pizzerias in Manhattan and the other NYC boroughs can be headache-inducing. But book a spot on Scott’s Pizza Tours and your problems are solved. Scott Wiener takes foodies on a bus or walking tour to four places for slices of pizza at each. You also have the option to customize your tour from a list of famous institutions, including, but not limited to, Patsy’s in East Harlem, the original Ray’s on Prince Street, Lombardi’s (the country’s first licensed pizza joint), John’s of Bleecker, and Joe’s (favored by many a celebrity). Currently, the bus tour is offered only on weekends and costs $55, and the walking tour is offered on Wednesdays for $30. (212) 209-3370, www.scottspizzatours.com