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Detroit-style, Sicilian, Roman: Thick-crust pizza is here to stay. Here’s where to find it.

We live in Minnesota, home to a million pizza spots with cracker-thin crusts and heaping amounts of beautiful, bubbling cheese.


This story is not about those pizzas.


In recent years, a different kind of pizza has taken off in the Twin Cities — one that features the thickest of spongy crusts and often wild, unconventional toppings.


There are a few different styles that are everywhere right now: Detroit-style, Roman and Sicilian. All three would make my Wisconsinite mother, who cannot abide crust thicker than a dime, shudder.


But this story is not about her. It’s about the rest of us, who have found that despite their good Upper Midwestern upbringing, there’s something appealing about getting full from one (or two if we’re really hungry) squares of pizza.


Here are our favorite spots for that super thick crust — find a friend or two and go!


Mario's
A supreme pizza at Mario’s in St. Paul. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)
A supreme pizza at Mario’s in St. Paul. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

This Cleveland Avenue college-kid favorite, which the owners of nearby Estelle opened in 2022, serves Sicilian-style deep-dish pies and the best hoagies in town.

The pizzas, from which Detroit-style pies descended, have a thicker crust than most — a chewy-crisp version of a regular crust, built to hold lots of toppings. And the eatery piles them on every one of the pizzas, but especially my favorite, the supreme, which is basically a jazzed-up version of a deluxe, sporting poblano peppers instead of the usual green and oyster mushrooms instead of button.


And, if you want to check it out without committing to a whole pizza, slices are available at lunchtime daily.

Mario’s: 232 N. Cleveland Ave., St. Paul; 651-207-5252; mariosstp.com


Wrestaurant at the Palace
Meatball pizza at Wrestaurant at the Palace. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)
Meatball pizza at Wrestaurant at the Palace. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

Detroit-style is all the rage, and this outfit is the one that kicked it off in the Twin Cities.

There are three Minneapolis locations — two of them in food halls — but the St. Paul spot, named Wrestaurant at the Palace, has the most extensive menu.

The crust here is essentially a springy focaccia, and the cheese on top is liberally applied so that it sneaks down around the edges of the pie, creating an irresistible layer of caramelized cheese. The specialty pies range from the ubiquitous hot honey and pepperoni to a breakfast pizza that “Good Morning America” crowned the best in the nation. While I think trying to name the best pizza in the country is a ridiculous task, especially given all the styles and personal preferences, it is a really good pizza.

Best of all, the St. Paul location takes reservations, which you’ll need if you want to fill up before a nearby show. It’s definitely our new go-to spot before concerts at The Palace.


Wrestauarant at the Palace: 33 W. Seventh Place, St. Paul; 952-600-5611; wrestaurantatthepalace.com. Find the Minneapolis locations at wrecktanglepizza.com


King Coil Spirits
The Boomer pizza at King Coil Spirits in St. Paul. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)
The Boomer pizza at King Coil Spirits in St. Paul. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

It’s always great to have an in-between spot to meet friends from the west metro, and King Coil is filling that niche for me.

The distillery makes all its own booze, including liqueurs, bitters and vermouths, and the cocktails are great. The Roman-style pizza is similar to a Sicilian crust — thick, crisp-chewy and sturdy enough to hold a ton of toppings. King Coil has some of the most creative thick-crust specialty pizzas out there, too, from the Lake Monster (named for the adjacent brewery, which has the same owners), with its whitefish pate, capers, pickled onions, dill, sumac and more, to the potato pesto, with pumpkin seed pesto, blue potatoes, arugula and lemon. There are more conventional and build-your-own options too, of course.


King Coil Spirits: 550 Vandalia St., Suite 140; kingcoilspirits.com


Melt Pizza
The Premo pizza at Melt Pizza Company in Stillwater. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)
The Premo pizza at Melt Pizza Company in Stillwater. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

This former pop-up operation now has a Main Street Stillwater home, and if a recent visit is any indication, locals are loving it. Seriously, make sure you have a reservation, or you might not get a table.

We love the crispy bottom of the Detroit-style crust here, and the toppings are top quality. Sauce choices are even fun — there’s red sauce, of course, but also a pink vodka sauce, a creamy garlic confit.

Don’t sleep on the super-crisp cheese curds here, either. They’re doused with garlic oil and sprinkled with more cheese, of of the parmesan variety.


Melt Pizza Company: 112 N. Main St., Stillwater; 651-342-0246; meltpizzacompany.com


Jet's Pizza
A supreme pizza from Jet’s in Maplewood. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)
A supreme pizza from Jet’s in Maplewood. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

This Detroit-based chain serves up the real deal in Detroit-style pizza.

Toppings are pretty standard, the red sauce is decent and, basically, it does in a pinch.

It does have this irresistible, crispy crust that reminds me of the deep-dish pizza at Pizza Hut, which I only got as a kid when I kicked butt in my grade school’s Book It program (see above for my mother’s pizza preferences).


Jet’s Pizza: 10 metro locations, including 2158 Rice St., Suite 106, St. Paul; 651-300-5387; jetspizza.com


Bricksworth Beer Co.
The Happiest Meal pizza at Bricksworth Beer Co. in Burnsville. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)
The Happiest Meal pizza at Bricksworth Beer Co. in Burnsville. (Jess Fleming / Pioneer Press)

There are few places that I’m willing to make the drive to Burnsville for. This is one of them.

Cooper Johnson’s spacious brewery has great beer and even better pizza.

Detroit-style specialty pizzas include fun pies like The Happiest Meal, a ground beef/cheese/pickle/special sauce concoction meant to evoke a cheeseburger and The Godfather Part II, an alfredo-sauce/chicken/mushroom combo with dabs of sriracha. I love that you can get a small, four-piece pizza here, which means it’s easier to try a few.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that their wings are some of my favorites in the cities — crisp-skinned, well spiced and tender. Beware of the Chili Lime Fuego flavor, though, which is supposed to mimic Takis, the popular Mexican snack food, but is about 10 times hotter than any Taki I’ve ever eaten.


Bricksworth Beer Co.: 12257B Nicollet Ave. South, Burnsville; 952-657-5236 or 305 Fifth Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-886-1848; bricksworthbeer.co

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