Don’t let the sketchy inner-city neighborhood and drab exterior fool you. Buddy’s serves the best pizza in Detroit. Locals have been piling into this former speakeasy since the 1940s for the square-sliced, deep-dish pies, and the business has since expanded to eight other Detroit locations. The outposts are fine, but they can't compare to the traditional vibe of dining in the original location.
Customers enter via a reassuringly well-guarded parking lot into a warren of small checkered-tablecloth dining rooms and bright hallways bursting with accolades and awards. A well-stocked bar and side dishes like garlic bread, deep-fried mushrooms and antipasto help inspire a faithful following. Blackboards list specials, and a lengthy printed menu details soups, salads and sandwiches in addition to the myriad pizza choices.
Buddy's has achieved a deep-dish pizza with a cracker-thin crust that is nothing short of magical. Teamed with hand-grated mozzarella, tangy San Marzano tomato sauce and fresh toppings, it’s a square slice of heaven. Four-slice cheese pizzas start at $8; eight-slice sizes at $14. Novelty pies like the chicken fajita ($12 for a four-slice, $20 for an eight-slice) are successful as well, featuring morsels of chicken breast, caramelized onion and sauteed peppers atop melted mozzarella.