Mission Pizza, located in downtown Winston-Salem, is taking pizza to another level as North Carolina’s first and only true Napoletana pizzeria. This Trade Street favorite doesn’t just serve up boring, cardboard-tasting pizza. Prepare yourself for wildly creative, dangerously good ‘za.

Its somewhat industrial and minimalist atmosphere welcomes you with dim lighting and high-top tables. In the heart of the action you’ll find an open kitchen that centers around a giant wood-burning oven.

Capturing the essence of Naples, Mission Pizza offers more than just pizza. Born from fresh, simple ingredients, each pizza is delightful and has a surprising amalgamation of balanced flavors.


Photo by Kelly McAdam

Just the thought of the Margherita Extra pizza, made with buffalo mozzarella, is enough to make me salivate. The ingredients are classic, yet interesting and unique. Mission Pizza also uses more unusual ingredients such as soppressata, peppadews, pistachios and ‘nduja, which are all conveniently defined in a description box on the menu.

All of the pizzas on the menu are top notch. My personal favorites are the Filetti, made with whole cherry tomatoes and burrata, and the Diavola which features soppressata, honey, red pepper flakes, and basil.

The pizza isn’t the only force to be reckoned with. Their appetizers and other entrées are just as inventive and satisfying.

Whether you’re vegetarian, carnivorous, or somewhere in between, the grilled cauliflower wedge with goat cheese and parsley or the traditional meatballs in marinara are equally as divine as the pizza. The summer spaghetti featuring tomatoes and artichokes is delicious, and the dressing on the greens salad is unmatched by any other Winston restaurant.


Photo by Ashley Hamati

Balancing his time between striking up conversation at every table and working behind the line, owner and Wake Forest alum Peyton Smith makes eating at his restaurant a fun and personal experience. Staff members are so friendly and helpful that you can’t help but feel at home here.

In the words of my father himself: “Mission Pizza is the real deal. And I know pizza. I’m from Jersey.”