Pizza- it's an iconic American food, but Americans differ wildly in their preferences. Some like New York style thin-crust, some swear by Chicago deep-dish. Usually, I am in the thin-Italian-style camp, so I am wary of any deep-dish pizza. It's hard for me to take deep-dish seriously... it seems more like a lasagna than a pizza, with the toppings often overwhelming any semblance of a crust. I never particularly liked deep-dish, probably because my experience was limited to Pizza Hut and a few other unremarkable varieties.
However, Little Star pizza changed my mind. Little Star is a cute restaurant in the NOPA area of San Francisco which often has a line going out the door. It's fairly common for diners to wait over an hour for a table.
Although the pizza is still loaded with toppings and marinara sauce, the difference is in the execution and the ingredients. The pizza crust is a cornmeal crust which is crispy and hearty. The crust is topped with fresh mozzarella and marinara and toppings like spinach, sausage, and mushrooms. Everything is seasoned perfectly and as far as I'm concerned, it's a delicious, satisfying pie.
Aside from deep-dish pizza, Little Star also has a number of other standouts. There are a few appetizers, including caprese salad, garlic bread, and buffalo wings. The caprese salad was fresh and flavorful. The garlic bread was unique and DIY, with a creamy melty butter sauce to scrape onto your baguette and a clove of roasted garlic. I love roasted garlic; it's so buttery and the roasting gives the garlic a great nutty flavor! Also, Little Star has some thin crust pizzas which are pretty good too.
The atmosphere of Little Star is also fun. Families, couples, and groups all feel comfortable in this busy little restaurant with a small bar. It's not as loud as some of the other restaurants in the area, but it's not the place for an intimate dinner either. There is a jukebox in the corner with remixes like Bee Gees- How Deep is Your Dish?
Overall, I would count Little Star as a must-visit in San Francisco!