Looking for the very best pizza joints Ballito has to offer?

Continuing our culinary taste expeditions at top-rated restaurants as voted for in The North Coast Courier Best of Ballito Readers’ Choice Awards, we decided to get stuck into pizzas.

Thousands of votes were cast for the best pizza venues on the North Coast, and this is what our readers had to say.

If you want to see the full list of winners and runners-up in all categories, visit bestofballito.co.za.

1. Salt Café
Corner Old Main Road and Ocean Drive
Pizza Wednesday to Sunday, 12.30pm to 7.30pm.

Make sure to add a few drops of Salt’s secret sauce, a homemade chili oil, to the Bacon and Avo pizza.

Salt Café has it all, exquisite thin-based wood-fired pizza, and a unique setting that instantly evokes ‘good vibrations’.

Sitting at the small roadside café under a canopy of twisting vines, the smell of pizzas baking mingles with the smell of the ocean and relaxation washes over you like a wave.

We tried two of their speciality pizzas, the Café Del Mar (R140) and the Bacon and Avo (R145).

The Café Del Mar is an unusual combination of sweet onion marmalade, blue cheese, crunchy pecan nuts, bacon, rocket and mozzarella. The combination hit all the right notes and we devoured every last crumb.

Equally delicious, the classic combination of bacon, avo, feta and mozzarella is an instant crowd pleaser. This particular pizza was made even more irresistible by the addition of Salt’s secret sauce – a homemade chili oil. Add with caution as this is powerful stuff.

2. Bird & Co.
The Market, Ballito Lifestyle Centre

The signature Bird & Co pizza comes loaded with a variety of toppings, delivering a creamy bite of goodness every step of the way.

Chicken on pizza does not generate quite the same debate that pineapple might, but it is certainly not for everyone, this reviewer typically included.

But if you are going to do it, then it’s worth leaning in all the way, like Bird & Co. does with their signature namesake pizza, the Bird & Co (R130).

Packed with chicken, alongside chorizo, caramelised onion, rocket, avocado and peri mayonnaise, this is a creamy delight.

Although a tomato base is included, the main flavour comes from the toppings, generous mozzarella and the mayo drizzle.

It makes for a taste not unlike a chicken sandwich, heightened by the smokey crust from the genuine wood-fired pizza oven.

There are other non-chicken pizzas on offer at Bird & Co. and we’ll definitely be back to try those too.

3. Pappa G’s
Ballito Junction Regional Mall

Pappa G’s Regina pizza with ham and mushroom.

Pappa G’s is a delightful Italian restaurant where the vibe is merry and the décor authentic.

Walking in, one is greeted by mouth-watering smells coming from the wood-fired oven.

Pappa G’s Regina ham and mushroom pizza (R115) is one of their best-sellers – and the first bite told us why.

Apart from the generous toppings, the base met the crucial criteria of being crisp and thin. Delicious!

4. Lupa Osteria
Eat Street, Ballito Lifestyle Centre

Lupa Osteria Ballito’s Romulus pizza.

Can one forgive a restaurant for not delivering on the expected amount of toppings when a pizza tastes great?

That was the question when sampling Lupa’s latest addition to their pizza range, the Romulus (R160).

Described as coming with slow-braised lamb ragù with mushrooms, rocket and cucumber mint yoghurt, the pizza was delicious, but the sparsity of lamb topping was somewhat disappointing.

Still, the authentic Italian ingredients did make this pizza a delicious treat.

5. Fiamma Grill
63 Compensation Road, Ballito

Fiamma Grill’s Juventus pizza (R155).

Fiamma Grill’s Juventus pizza (R155), served with chorizo, feta, peppadew, avo, rocket and balsamic reduction, earns full marks.

Fiamma Grill is generous with its toppings, and the spicy and salty chorizo perfectly complemented the other ingredients, producing a burst of flavour at first bite, and there was no fault with the thin and crispy base. Chili, garlic and parmesan on the side added to the flavour.

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