Pizza Bowl Returns to the Meadowlands Looking to Crown a New Pizza King

A recent tradition will be returning to the Meadowlands in February. Just one week before the Super Bowl, Redd’s Restaurant and Bar will host the third annual Pizza Bowl on Saturday, Feb. 4. The event, run by the Jersey Pizza Joints Facebook group, will look to crown a new winner for the best pizza locations in New Jersey after launching the event in 2021 and the online group during the pandemic in 2020.

Last year, the Pizza Bowl featured 32 different pizza restaurants from across New Jersey with Maruca’s Tomato Pies of Seaside Heights winning the competition. In addition, PizzAmore Italian Kitchen of Carlstadt won the best meatball at last year’s competition. The live bake-off featured 220 judges including celebrity judges such as Federico Castelluccio from “The Sopranos,” Joseph D’Onofrio from “Goodfellas” and “A Bronx Tale” along with WABC anchor Ken Rosato.

The competition consists of five rounds of voting starting in December to determine the best pizza and meatballs in the Garden State. The list comes from members of the Jersey Pizza Joints Facebook page scour the state to find the best pizza restaurants. Through a series of elimination rounds, 52 judges each round narrow down what they believe is the best pizza. Ultimately, four restaurants from each of the regions, North, Central, South and Shore, make it to the final round of 16 and will face off on Feb. 4.

The competition was started by the founder of the Jersey Pizza Joints Facebook group, Guy Madsen. Madsen, a resident of Clifton, started the page during the early of days of the COVID-19 pandemic to help support local pizza shops during the pandemic along with staying connected with family and friends, according to TAPinto.com.

When talking about what makes the Pizza Bowl better than other rankings, Madsen said, “There are tons of rankings and lists for best pizza. This is the only contest that ends with a live bake-off and voting.”

This year’s competition will see Rosato and D’Onofrio return as celebrity judges along with Jim Murdoch of News 12 NJ, Dan Mannarino of WPIX 11, Artie Pasquale and Tony Cucci of “Sopranos” fame, along with others.

The Pizza Bowl is not only a fun event for Jersey pizza lovers but also benefits the participating restaurants and the Tunnel to Towers foundation. A percentage of the profits from the competition will go to the foundation. In addition, the Pizza Bowl generates publicity and foot traffic for the participating locations. The Pizza Terminal in Verona, which won the inaugural Pizza Bowl in 2021, saw a boom in business as the competition helped put the restaurant on the map, Scott Rafferty told NorthJersey.com.

For some, the stakes are higher than simply being the winner of the Pizza Bowl, such is the case for Steve Bruno. Bruno, founder of Mr. Bruno’s Pizza in Lyndhurst is aiming to compete for the Pizza Hall of Fame trophy.

To check out the full list of this year’s participants, click here.

To see who is crowned as the 2023 Pizza Bowl winner, click here to get tickets.

Share this post

No comments

Add yours