Welcome to another installment of Tiger Town Treats, a series from The Prospect where we compare different snacks from local establishments and bring our reviews to you. Past Tiger Town Treats articles can be found here and here.
Today, I’ll be reviewing six different pizza places near campus. To compare them fairly, I ordered a plain cheese slice (or a whole pie, at places that only offer that option) from each place. The restaurants are, in alphabetical order: Conte’s Pizza, D’Angelo Italian Market, Jules Thin Crust Pizza, Nomad Pizza, Pizza Den, and Proof.
At each restaurant, I asked the workers what their most popular pizza type was, as well as their personal recommendations (interesting flavor combos await!). I also voted which pizza place, in my opinion, has the best crust, the best “American-style” pizza, the best amount of cheese for cheesy-pizza-lovers, the best sauce, the best ambiance, the most “Instagrammable” vibe, and the best selection of toppings.
What I ordered: Small plain cheese pizza
Address: 339 Witherspoon Street
Most popular pizza: Pepperoni, Onion, and Garlic Pizza, or Sausage Mushroom Pizza
Staff recommendation: Pepperoni, Onion, and Garlic Pizza
Vibe: Conte’s Pizza is at least a 20-minute walk from most dorms on campus, so I did not go there in person. Instead, I ordered a pie through GrubHub to The Daily Princetonian newsroom.
Final thoughts: Conte’s has a crunchy, thin crust — I would have preferred the crust to be softer and chewier, as its brittleness reminded me a bit of a cracker. The pizza is slightly oily, and although the sauce is good and herb-y flavored, I wish there was a higher amount of sauce and cheese, and I wish that the crust itself had more flavor. Overall, very good!
D’Angelo Italian Market
What I ordered: Plain Cheese Slice
Address: 35 Spring Street
Most popular pizza: Chicken, Bacon, and Ranch Pizza
Staff recommendation: Sicilian Pizza or Buffalo Chicken Pizza
Vibe: Since this is a market and not a typical restaurant, it would be unfair to compare its ambiance to that of other restaurants. Nevertheless, the tables were tidy and clean, and it wasn’t too loud.
Final thoughts: The crust was relatively thin and crunchy, similar to the crust from Proof’s; not as thin as Jules’ and Pizza Den’s, and definitely crunchier than Nomad’s. The sauce was good, but a bit watery. This is most certainly a cheese slice: there was a lot more cheese on D’Angelo’s pizza than at any other place reviewed for this article! For those who love a huge amount of cheese, this is a great option. Personally, however, I found there to be too much cheese.
Jules Thin Crust Pizza
What I ordered: Plain Cheese Slice
Address: 18 Witherspoon Street
Most popular pizza: Kim’s Pie or Bruschetta
Staff recommendation: Bruschetta or Pesto
Vibe: Jules is probably the most Instagrammable place on this list, along with Nomad: the slices are (usually) served on wooden platters, and the place has a very good ambiance, often playing 2010s music. The walls are tiled, and the large windows allow you to see locals walking their dogs up Witherspoon. I also love the interesting selection of toppings: mushrooms and arugula, pesto, potato carbonara, etc. It can get somewhat busy around dinner time, but the line moves quickly.
Final thoughts: Jules, as per its name, has a soft, thin crust, and the pizza itself is not too oily. It has a wide variety of pizza options, both with vegetables and meat. There is also a gluten-free crust option, only 50 cents more expensive than non-gluten-free pies. Personally, I really like Jules!
What I ordered: a Margherita pie
Address: 301 N Harrison Street
Most popular pizza: Shiitake Mushroom Pizza or Margherita Pizza
Staff recommendation: Pepperoni Pizza
Vibe: With the closest Nomad location at least a 30-minute walk away from central campus, I ordered a pie through DoorDash, so I will not be rating the ambiance for Nomad. (Although I have been to the restaurant in pre-COVID-19 times, and the ambiance was quite enjoyable, with calming lighting coming from string lights hanging from the ceiling.)
Final thoughts: The crust is very flavorful and soft, and relatively thin; it can be charred on the bottom sometimes. The sauce is delicious and there is a good ratio of cheese to sauce to crust — less cheese than at some of the other places on this list. There is less sauce than at Proof, but more than at Jules. I also appreciate the added basil! Nomad also has a variety of other toppings, such as shiitake mushrooms, arugula with prosciutto, and even nutella pizza.
What I ordered: Plain Cheese slice
Address: 242 Nassau Street
Most popular pizza: Pepperoni Pizza
Staff recommendation: Long Hots and Bacon Pizza
Vibe: The interior is nicely decorated, in a welcoming fashion with white walls, bright light bulbs hanging down from the ceiling, and a brick oven in the back. I sat by the window seat in front of the Einstein poster while quiet music played in the background. I also really liked how the pizza was served on a wooden tray.
Final thoughts: The pizza has a thin, crispy crust — slightly charred on the bottom, but I don’t mind that. The crust is thinner than D’Angelo’s and Proof’s but around the same thickness as Jules’. It has a good ratio of sauce to cheese to crust, and the sauce was flavorful: a bit salty but not as much as Proof’s sauce. The pizza was a bit oily, however. Overall, I found it to be very tasty! Pizza Den also has gluten-free crust and vegan cheese options. Although Pizza Den is a bit further from campus than D’Angelo’s and Jules, it is certainly worth the walk.
What I ordered: Regular cheese slice
Address: 84 Nassau Street
Most popular pizza: Truffle Pizza or Brooklyn Pizza
Staff recommendation: Truffle Pizza or the Porky Pie Pizza
Vibe: Although Proof can get a bit crowded, it has a great ambiance with chill music. The best parts are the contemporary wall decorations, with Princeton’s own Einstein’s face adorning the wall, and math-inspired posters. It’s definitely a good place to get inspired to finish your difficult and anxiety-inducing math problem set!
Final thoughts: The crust was soft and not too thick, but still thicker than many of the other places featured on this list, such as Jules and Nomad. This slice had more sauce than any of the other places that I have tried, and although the sauce was very tasty, it was a bit salty for my taste.
Personal prize winners!
Overall best crust: Nomad — the soft and very flavorful crust won over my heart.
Best “American-style” pizza: Pizza Den — great ratio of sauce to cheese to crust
Most Instagrammable: Jules and Nomad
Best ambiance: Jules — I love the 2010s music and the table setup! Pizza Den’s ambiance, especially if you get the window seat, is very pleasant too — would be a great place for a conversation.
Best selection of interesting flavors: Nomad and Jules
Best for cheese-lovers: D’Angelo Italian Market
Best sauce: Proof
Maria Khartchenko is a Contributing Writer for The Prospect at the ‘Prince.’ She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at @masha.khart on Instagram.