Zoli’s, with its Star Wars artwork, sassy signage and boundary-pushing pies, still sets the standard for pizza in the Dallas area. The restaurant’s cult following — just try walking around the Bishop Arts District, where the restaurant was originally located, wearing a Zoli’s T-shirt — is fully matched by the intense deliciousness of pies like the Christian Pescroni, with double pepperoni and a jalapeño pesto; the Cattleack, featuring brisket from that legendary barbecue pit; and the muffaletta pizza, which is at least as preposterous as it sounds. If you somehow need anything else, there’s room on the menu for fried mozzarella balls, garlic knots and big bowls of chopped salad.
Top pick: There’s a pizzeria within the pizzeria, Thunderbird Pies, which specializes in Detroit-style crusts. A product of pandemic creativity, Thunderbird’s eclectically named offerings include a meatball pie and the hot sausage and onion combo on the Drip Pan. (Try telling your friends you want to order a Drip Pan for dinner.)
Fun fact: Look out for pies with spiced crusts; some of Zoli’s pizza crusts come dusted with “everything bagel” seasonings, and they are perfect.