berkeley pizza / downtown san diego

After we witnessed that pretty sunset in Mission Beach, Jake and I started thinking about dinner! He suggested we try this place he spied on Yelp called Berkeley Pizza over in Downtown San Diego. Berkeley Pizza specializes in deep dish pizza – there is no wink or trace of a thin slice pizza in here, buddy!

They have slices of pizza or you can also order a whole pie – which will take about 40 minutes to make. This is definitely something you want to order in advance so it’s ready for you! We took the pizza home to eat. I hopped out of the car to get the pizza while Jake drove around the block so we didn’t have to deal with trying to find parking Downtown. This place is located in the heart of the Gaslamp so quick parking is not easy.

Garlic and Sausage Deep Dish Pizza - Berkeley Pizza - San Diego

[large deep dish pizza / $19.95 + 2 toppings, each topping $1.50]

We ordered a large to share between myself, Jake and T and got it topped with garlic and sausage. The garlic was very plentiful (as you can see from the photo). It looked like the garlic was sprinkled on top near the end of the baking. The garlic was not too browned and added a nice flavor to the pizza. On the other hand, the sausage was very scant! I think there was maybe one piece of sausage per slice… I hardly detected or ate any of it. From the photo I can only see one piece but I’m sure the rest is hiding under the mounds of sauce.

Crust closeup - Deep Dish Pizza - Berkeley Pizza, San Diego

You can see here how high and thick the crust it. The tomato sauce used on this pizza is a chunky style sauce with stewed tomatoes strewn all over the top.

cheesy filled deep dish closeup - berkeley pizza

This thing is filled to the brim with cheese! Lots and lots of cheese.

Since it’s a deep dish pizza and it bakes for awhile a while, this has almost more of a “pastry” like taste to it on the crust. It’s flaky and soft, not crispy like some good thin sliced pizza can be. It’s also a LOT of sauce. Like, really heavy on the sauce. It’s a completely different kind of pizza and I’m thinking that maybe it’s just not the style for me.

Jake ended up liking the sauce except for the stewed chunks of tomato on top. The overall flavor was good, but I didn’t like how much sauce it had and I didn’t really like the crust… it’s just not what I think of when I think of pizza! Jake liked this a little more than I did. I thought maybe the oodles of cheese would win my heart but as a package it’s just not my style.

We have also tried Lefty’s Pizza which we also both didn’t really care for. Chicago Deep Dish is maybe just not for us! Are there any other deep dish places in town to try? Maybe we just struck out twice!

Berkeley Pizza
539 Island Ave
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 937-0808

Berkeley Pizza on Urbanspoon


mary likes baking.

14 Responses

  1. Regents Pizza by UCSD is supposed to have a pretty good Chicago pizza! I don’t love Chicago pizza but my friends who do swear by it. And if you are not into Chicago pizza their regular NY pizza is soooo gooddd. I love the Sopressata one and they have two other ones that have prosciutto, roasted garlic and truffle oil that are pretty great 🙂

    • mary says:

      Hi J.S. – Hmmm, that might be a good place to try a slice of each for research purposes! Not too far from my office, either. Mmm, pizza with truffle oil on it sounds really yummy! Thanks for the tip!

  2. Jinxi says:

    Hmm, if you’ve tried both Berkeley Pizza and Lefty’s, then you’ve pretty much hit the best spots in SD for deep dish pizza (according to my Chicagoan friend)… I’m more of a fan of thin-crust, too – I like the pastry-like dough for deep dish, but there’s so much sauce! It gets too salty for me.

    • mary says:

      Hi Jinxi – Yeah… I’m thinking about Chicago style just isn’t my thing. I never really liked Uno’s that much, either (not that that was really high quality, haha). The pastry like dough kind of threw me for a loop, it seemed quite un-pizza like to me. It’s too much sauce in my opinion!

  3. José says:

    I think you should try Regents Pizzeria at La Jolla. They have both NY Style and Chicago Deep Dish pizza and their menu even offers more choices if you are not in the mood for pizza 🙂

  4. I’m not a fan of Chicago style pizza but have tried Giordano’s (when we were in Chicago in ’09) and also Lou Malnati’s (also during the same trip). I like the crust but don’t like all the fillings to be like a thick pie. One piece seems so “heavy”.

    • mary says:

      Hi CC – Yeah I think I agree with you. It’s too much stuff. I barely managed to finish one slice. To much going on for me!

  5. Faye says:

    Ok don’t laugh but Costco has a deep dish pizza I kinda like. It has LOTS of sausage and pepperoni (and I think olives too?). If they’re not too busy, they’ll make one to your liking (ie no pepperoni and olives). You take it home and bake it in your oven. I think it’s only like $9.95 or something too. The last one I had almost had TOO much cheese.

    I don’t normally order deep dish pizza but when I do, it’s because I crave cheese. I usually end up eating around the crust 🙂

    Did you think the pizza you ordered was a good value ? I heard nice things about this pizza place. Do they have other stuff like wings ?

    • mary says:

      Hi Faye –
      Is that at the outer window? Or inside Costco they’ll customize it for you? I don’t have a Costco card, I have to piggyback on someone else if I want to go there. Unless we just go for hot dogs. And gelato!

      I think here at Berkeley Pizza they only have pizza (and beer). I didn’t see any other offerings on their website (I don’t remember from my visit since I really just went in to pay for and pick up the pizza). Was it a good value? Hmm.. maybe for someone else who digs it. But not for me since I didn’t really enjoy it.

  6. Lynn says:

    I’ve tried Berkeley Pizza before and I like their deep dish pizza. It’s also kinda upside-down. One other place that I like that has a deep crust is Sicilian Thing. The meatda is our favorite there!

    • mary says:

      Hi Lynn – Ohhh, yeah, I do really love the thick crust at Sicilian Thing, it’s like Pizza Bread! I like that kind of crust a lot more than the pastry-like crust. Now I want to go to Sicilian Thing haha!

      • Lynn says:

        I tried Berkeley Pizza during comicon weekend. The pesto is one of the more popular flavors but it fell flat for me. AND the wait time after ordering was quite long so two thumbs down. Must have been better back in memory lane. It aint no Sicilian Thing.

        • mary says:

          Hi Lynn – We walked by Berkeley Pizza Saturday afternoon and it looked PACKED. You’re brave for eating there during Comic Con! Bummer it wasn’t as good as you remembered it, hate when that happens. I’m still craving Sicilian Thing since you mentioned it!

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