Kevin Capece grew up eating a lot of pizza from Don Carmelo’s – the original one on 32nd & Farnam – since he grew up very nearby. It was the hot spot during his childhood and with family from New York, their pepperoni and sausage pizza was simply part of life.
Outside of the childhood treasure Don Carmelo’s is for Kevin, he has an appreciation for several other pizza joints around town that fit his “top” list for varied and good reasons.
Take Mama’s Pizza for instance. Kevin, and his wife, are from Cathedral High School and Mama’s Pizza was the place to be. Their friends would meet up and gather at Mama’s to enjoy great pizza and creating even better memories. Mama’s has what Kevin dubs “Midwestern” style pizza. Now, as a husband and father, Kevin describes Mama’s as family friendly and super kid friendly. Kevin told me that in addition to fantastic pizza, “the onion rings are delicious and there’s something special about the ranch dressing.” Mama’s is the place he would take old friends to if they haven’t been in Omaha for a while.
Zio’s Pizzeria is the “only new York style” pizza to make Kevin’s list. He loves the flexibility to get anything you want by the slice making it very kid friendly since everyone doesn’t have to agree to eat the same thing. Kevin said, “Zio’s crust is really nice and the variety of topping choices gets me to divert from my usual pepperoni and sausage.”
Kevin describes Orsi’s Italian Bakery & Pizzeria as “the best deal in town.” You can get pizzas by the sheet that will feed a lot of people. He describes their pies as “top heavy pizza with very good sauce.” If you have occasions and parties there’s no better place than Orsi’s, which is located in Little Italy. Orsi’s is a take-out only place, and the combo pizza is a great option.
As Kevin began to talk about Sgt. Peffer’s, there was an audible difference in his tone which told me this place is special without him saying as much. He told me the dough is good, and that the crust is very good, and there’s an “easiness” of the dough, so I’m going to guess that all this dough and crust talk means this pizza would be fantastic if it were nothing but crust. He did go on to describe the sauce as “very, very good sauce that tastes different than everyone else’s,” and he even departs from the sausage and pepperoni by recommending going for the pepperoni-only pizza. The Millard location is family friendly since it’s larger as the Saddle Creek spot is smaller.
Rounding out the list is Pizzeria Davlo.
Never tasted Chicago style pizza as good as this outside of Giordano’s in Chicago.” ~ Kevin Capece
Another restaurant that ignited that little something extra as Kevin spoke of it. This is extreme Chicago style and Kevin said he’s “never tasted Chicago style pizza as good as this outside of Giordano’s in Chicago.” He goes on to share “this is legitimate Chicago style in Omaha – they’ve hit the nail on the head. If you’ve never had Chicago style, start here and then compare others to this.” He explained that Chicago style is the opposite of how the layering is typically done. In fact, Pizzeria Davlo is so good, Kevin would take friends here who aren’t from the Omaha area to show off their Chicago style talent.
Seen through Kevin’s eyes, good pizza is an artistry and Omaha clearly has top contenders in the market. Take your own tour of these top spots and see which one is fast to become your favorite.
When Kevin is not visiting local pizza joints or volunteering his time in youth sports, he can be found at Montclair Insurance Group. He encourages you to stop by for a cup of coffee. You might even be able to strike up a conversation about pizza!
Photo Credits: 316 Strategy Group