accessAtlanta

City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Manhattan NY Pizza dining review, Norcross

$

$

Stepping into the small pizzeria in a nondescript strip mall for the first time, I do a double take. I turn and peek back out the front door to make sure that I’m still in Gwinnett County, and hadn’t teleported into Little Five Points.

Situated near I-85 and Indian Trail Road in Norcross, Manhattan NY Pizza bursts with more personality than its unassuming storefront suggests.

Review by Jon Watson

Review by Jon Watson

The walls, reminiscent of an unfinished basement except for a mural of the Manhattan skyline, are covered in customer graffiti, sports memorabilia, street signs, posters, and Polaroids of smiling regulars. A disco ball hangs from the ceiling above a miniature living room, complete with a plaid couch and coffee table, and a pair of “Guitar Hero” controllers sit in front of a large flat-screen TV, waiting for the next pretend rock star to take the stage. They even have an old-school Atari system on hand, in case a game of “Pong” or “Space Invaders” is in order.

Owner Kyle Boyce — aka “The Pie Guy” — has one mission at Manhattan NY Pizza: Take back the pie!

What does that mean? In a world where a pizza is merely a phone call and 30 minutes away, he seeks to bring the quality back to pizza making. You can see the pride in Boyce’s face when he describes how he slices every ingredient by hand, to order. In fact, because of this individualized care, you should always budget for about 20 minutes of prep time for your order. Calling ahead is a great option if you are tight on time.

manhattan ny pizza

Tandoori chicken pizza (photo by Becky Stein)

Pizzas are available by the slice, 8-inch personal pan, and 12, 14 and 16-inch sizes. In keeping with their Manhattan namesake, Boyce makes all of the pies with hand-tossed dough, yielding a slightly crunchy yet chewy crust. However, the similarity to classic New York-style pizza stops there.

The list of specialty pies is anything but traditional, and in many cases, anything but reminiscent of New York. One of Boyce’s more unique offerings, the eye-popping tandoori chicken pizza ($4/slice), explodes on the plate and on the palate. Topped with fiery red hunks of tandoori masala chicken, green peppers and onions, this pie crackles with Indian spice and packs a lot of flavor.

Imagine this scene for a moment: After a long night at the bars, a pizzaiolo stumbles into the kitchen to whip up a pie, despite not having all of his wits about him. What do you get? That would be the Take Me Drunk I’m Home pizza ($8/8-inch). Too much dough (read: thicker crust) and an over-the-top helping of toppings tossed on before the sauce or cheese makes this reverse pie a hearty indulgence. Continuing the partying motif, the Chili Cheese Fry Pie ($14/12-inch) sports an artery-clogging mound of french fries, bacon, ground beef and cheddar cheese.

Those in a Mediterranean state of mind should look to the Pizza of the Gods ($16/14-inch), which brings together an intriguing mix of gyro meat, feta cheese, onions, Kalamata olives, spinach and a side of tzatziki sauce. Or try the aptly named Vampire Repellent ($4/slice), a garlicky tour de force consisting of roasted chicken breast bathed in garlic butter, tomatoes, green peppers, onions and some extra fresh garlic for kicks.

While pizza dominates the menu, Manhattan NY Pizza carries some solid options on the “Not Pies” section of the menu as well. The gyro wrap ($7) is among the best that one can find in the Atlanta area. Though messy and sometimes unwieldy, the fresh pita bread and flavorful meat leave you with a tzatziki-smeared smile on your face. Fans of chicken wings ($7 for 10 wings) won’t be disappointed either. The crunchy garlic Parmesan Vampire Repellent wings need no dipping sauce, but a breath mint might not be a bad idea afterward.

Unfortunately, no alcohol graces the menu due to the restaurant’s proximity to a school. Instead, Manhattan NY Pizza offers an impressive collection of root beers, providing the base for my favorite dessert, the root beer floats ($3.50).

In a landscape riddled with chain pizza joints, Manhattan NY Pizza is an oasis for the true pie lover, and the walls still have room for a few more regulars.

MANHATTAN NY PIZZA
Indian Trail Road, Suite 115, Norcross. 770-381-9255
3stars5
Food: Pizza, wraps and salads
Service: Friendly and engaging, but expect at least 20 minutes of prep time, as each dish is cooked to order.
Best dishes: Tandoori chicken pizza and the gyro wrap
Vegetarian selections: Multiple vegetarian pizzas and salads
Credit cards: Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Discover
Hours: 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Fridays, noon-10 p.m. Saturdays, closed Sundays
Children: Welcome
Parking: Ample parking in front
Reservations: No
Wheelchair access: Yes
Smoking: No
Noise level: Usually low, but could get noisy when crowded
Patio: No
Takeout: Yes
ratings_key_febUSE

25 comments Add your comment

Reds

April 7th, 2011
8:09 am

Oh… my… lord….. that tandoori pizza looks stunning. Every pizza you mentioned sounded to die for (said in a bad NY accent). Might have to take a trip to Norcross soon.

Moon

April 7th, 2011
8:20 am

Root beer and pizza is the perfect combo

Old school

Brad

April 7th, 2011
9:56 am

Jon, I am glad that you enjoyed Manhattan NY Pizza. I work just down the street and this is my go to place when I want to get out of the office and have a great slice. They have special priced by the slice days that are almost too cheap! But please dont let them know that. Great review.

Johnny

April 7th, 2011
12:39 pm

That does not look like a NY style pizza. You didn’t mention what part of NY he is from and what his pizzaiolo pedigree is from. Thanks for the pic, if I want pizza like this, I’ll drive half a mile to California Pizza Kitchen in Atlantic Station.

Jon Watson

April 7th, 2011
12:57 pm

@Johnny – While I always appreciate the rays of sunshine that you bring to our comment section, I’m guessing that you just skimmed this one. I actually point out in the review that there are few similarities between their pizza and NY style pizza. The name is basically a misnomer. So, mentioning which part of NY he is from or where he received his pizzaiolo degree from seemed irrelevant.

Wino

April 7th, 2011
1:34 pm

I did not know that pizza could be consumed without beer.

Edgewood Adam

April 7th, 2011
1:38 pm

For NY style pizza in the hellhole that is Norcross, i like Your Pizza Man. Its in the Publix shopping center maybe a half mile furthed down Indian Trail. its not actualy and Indian Trail address because its off a side street but you will see it.

Theresa

April 7th, 2011
2:52 pm

The pizzas you described made me laugh! I want to check this place out.

Milt

April 8th, 2011
12:20 pm

I have been twice and each time my pizza was among the most enjoyable I have ever had.

Johnny

April 8th, 2011
12:33 pm

“The name is basically a misnomer.” Kinda like a place calling themselves Texas BBQ but in place of brisket and dry rub, they serve oven baked lacquered chicken with a ketchupy, mustard and vinegar based sauce. Slow and low, just don’t ask about the pink ring in the middle of that chicken. I think I got it, now. Thanks

byron

April 8th, 2011
2:05 pm

@Johhny If you want a NY style slice then just order a regular cheese slice, fold it up and enjoy. if you want to try something new and awesome try anything else they make. my guess is that pizza above was just more photogenic.

Goober

April 8th, 2011
2:06 pm

How does making one slice of “made to order” pizza work ? And french fries on a “pizza” is not a pizza. Do they make just plain old pepperoni ?

Milt

April 8th, 2011
3:07 pm

Plain old pepperoni is always available. The variations are what are noteworthy, but the various traditional pizza toppings are all available.

Huy

April 8th, 2011
7:51 pm

My personal favorite is the Vampire Repellent. It’s topped with garlic, chicken, onions, and don’t remember what else but it is delicious.

tripledart

April 9th, 2011
10:46 am

Way over priced.Treat yourself to a real pizza at Bambinelli’s In Lilburn or better yet Northlake area.
And by the way the Italian food is sought after by everyone coming to Atlanta.

The Peach

April 9th, 2011
9:26 pm

Sorry, tripledart, but I’ve been to Bambinelli’s in Northlake, and I didn’t think much about their pizza, or their food. There is no way everyone coming to Atlanta is seeking out their food. It’s OK, but it’s nothing like the Italian food I grew up with in Youngstown, Ohio. I make better Italian than Bambinelli’s.

jesse ventura

April 9th, 2011
9:45 pm

pizza, like america, is in a sad state of affairs.

Scott Anderson

April 9th, 2011
10:12 pm

well you cant get pizza at Matthew in Tucker, but why dont they open on the weekends. Why are their hours so screwed up you cant even plan to eat there. Why is the food going down the tubes. The deserts are not what they used to be.

I think they should turn Matthews into a Pizza place.

Ilene

April 9th, 2011
10:54 pm

Fini’s off of I-85 in Suwanee is THE place for NY pizza – the owner is from NY – it’s the real deal. Plus, their house dressing for salads is addictive.

Brody who grew up in Tucker

April 10th, 2011
12:46 am

Scott Anderson.. a puddle near you wants you to fall in it.. Signed, people who love kickin classics.

Bob

April 10th, 2011
1:22 am

It sounds like they serve a good, California-style pie.

Of course, if they’re going to serve California-style pizza, they should name the place accordingly — L.A. Pizza or San Diego Pizza or Compton Pizza or something. If you name it Manhattan Pizza, and offer something called a “New Yorker”…I mean, I’d kinda expect it to be New York style.

There are two kinds of New York style pizzas — old school charcoal cracker crust pies (John’s, Grimaldi’s, Lombardi’s, Totonno’s, etc.) and fabulously greasy slices from the corner pizzeria (Claudio’s, Mariella’s, World Famous Original Ray’s Original Pizza that’s Famous, etc.). But I’ve never seen a New Yorker order a double-cheese, double-pepperoni pizza (what this place calls a “New Yorker”). The old school guys won’t make one like that, and the guys at the slice shop don’t because…who puts that sort of junk on their slice? A slice should be somewhere between $1 (I know a place…it’s not as bad as you’d think) and $3.50, and either be plain cheese (regular or white) or have one thin layer of a straightforward ingredient — mushrooms, pepperoni, olives, etc. That’s New York style — that’s what you get in Manhattan.

I’m sure this pie is great — but, man, truth in advertising, you know?

Lilburn Lady

April 10th, 2011
1:35 am

I’m so glad that this place finally got some recognition! Atmosphere is great, the food is AWESOME and the staff is friendly. It may not be the “real deal” as far as New York pizza is concerned, but it is better than anything else you can get in our area. Imaginative, fresh ingredients, not a chain and well worth the wait to get that hand-made pizza, lovingly prepared to order.

Jeff

April 10th, 2011
10:12 am

DAAAAAAAAAMMMM!!! that looks it IS worth the trip!!!!

Dan

April 10th, 2011
1:49 pm

so of all the people that commented on their expertise of new york pizza how many of you are from the NYC area? I was born in Brooklyn and moved just slightly west to north jersey and Kyle’s pizza is by far the closest to home I’ve found while visiting friends in the norcross area. The dudes passion is second to none and he always takes the time to give back to the community by giving us a place to hang out after a long day of car racing. Byron said it best if you want plain old NYC style pizza go get a slice of plain and fold it. but if you want NY style crust and some much better ingredients this is the place to be.

Johnny

April 11th, 2011
10:10 am

I am from NYC (LES/eVill) 70s-2000, and there is no real NY style pizza in Atlanta. Period. Anyone claiming they are from NY aren’t even from the city, they’re from the tri-state area. All these owners who say they have the best NY pizza are frauds. Il Bacio owners are from upstate NY, pizza is mediocre. Gino’s Brooklyn Pizza owner is from NY but pizza average. Varasano’s was from the Bronx like decades ago and pizza is ok but cooked in Swedish electric ovens. Rusto’s NY pizza has been replaced by Sophia’s NY pizza (both claim from Brooklyn) and it’s 10 times worse than Rusto’s. Paisano’s NY pizza in Norcross is as NY as Suwanee is in Atlanta. Romeo’s in Norcross claims they are the best NY pizza but authenticity is only backed by soccer moms and their kids. Rosa’s pizza is decent but only to Atlanta standards. Piu Bello’s cooks their pies on aerated pie pans with the holes on the bottom, rather have DiGiorno’s. I can go on and on but it won’t make the pizza here any better.

Only one pizza is worthy of mentioning and that is Antico, it’s not NY style but Napoletana and cooked properly in their Acunto ovens. Just stop calling yourselves “NY Style Pizza” and save the embarrassment and criticism you will endure, especially when you state the borough in your name. Anyone who thinks they are eating Manhattan NY style pizza is only fooling themselves.