Biaggio Pizzeria - Allentown

Biaggio Pizzeria Serves Up Classic Favorites, Outrageous Slices, and Big Time Personality! The GIGANTIC Stuffed Crust Barbque Chicken Pizza ...

Biaggio Pizzeria Serves Up Classic Favorites, Outrageous Slices, and Big Time Personality!

The GIGANTIC Stuffed Crust Barbque Chicken Pizza with Onion Rings at Biaggio Pizzeria in Allentown is a multi-course meal in itself with a ton of flavor and character.

Whenever I run errands in a certain area inside or outside of NEPA, I'm always on the lookout to do a pizza review to find something unique and to see how the pizza stacks up to my local territory.  I sent out a question to the NEPA Nation to see who had the best pizza in Allentown, and the most popular response was Biaggio Pizzeria and Family Restaurant.  I checked with a couple of my resident expert insiders down that way who also suggested Biaggio was the place to go.

Biaggio has a huge selection of classic and crazy slice pies available.  Pictured here is the Pappas and the Stuffed Crust Barbeque Chicken Pizza with Onion Rings!

Biaggio is the brainchild of owner and pizza expert Joe Ruffino who has been serving the Lehigh Valley for over 30 years along with his wife Georgette, and children Salvatore, Dante, and Janelle.  In perusing Biaggio's social media and talking to a few mutual connections prior to my arrival, it was apparent that not only does Joe know pizza on a deep, technical level, but he's also a tremendous showman who oozes charisma that I couldn't wait to meet!

There are so many different pizza slices to choose from.  I had a hard time picking what to review, so I went with something classic and something crazy!

Biaggio is located at 1526 N Cedar Crest Blvd, Allentown, PA 18104 in a shopping center in between Weis Market and Target.  It was easy to get to and has a ton of parking.  I thought it was interesting that they opened at 10:00 am but was grateful because I figured I would show up prior to the lunch rush and get a chance to meet Joe and learn a little more about the place.  I showed up around 11:00 am and they were already slamming busy.  It was evident this was a high volume pizza shop!

The barbeque chicken slice features 2 "skins" (as Joe calls them), an upper and lower crust, a mountain of chicken, smoky sweet barbeque sauce, cheddar cheese, and is topped with onion rings.

The pizzeria is warm, welcoming, and charming.  You are immediately greeted by the large slice and desert display to your left along with friendly staff members everywhere who are eager to help and serve.  I observed the welcoming nature of the team every time a customer or group of customers walked in the door, and no one was more welcoming than owner Joe Ruffino himself.  Adorned with an apron and a wide smile, he emerged from working in the trenches and lit up the room as he came out to greet me.  He was larger than life just as I had imagined!  As we began to talk pizza he seamlessly transitioned from talking about dough hydrations to greeting customers he hadn't seen since before the pandemic began, and back to the technical details of all of what goes into the pizzas.  It was amazing that with all that was going on, he was fully present in our conversation but also with everyone working in the kitchen as well as all of the customers in the dining room. 

Screen grab of Joe Ruffino with a special message on the Biaggio Pizzeria website.

It's safe to say that the conversation with Joe and the customer experience made the 90 minute drive worth the trip, but I came to do a pizza review and I was fascinated by many of the crazy pizzas behind the glass.  The only place I know of with insane pizzas like these in NEPA is Franco's in Wilkes-Barre, but even these stuffed crust pizzas were a bit different from what Franco's is offering so it's safe to say I hadn't seen pizzas that looked exactly like this before.

A glance inside a portion of the slice display at Biaggio in Allentown.

It was a very tough decision as to what to order, but I decided I wanted to do a more classic slice to get a baseline for the quality of Biaggio's more basic pizzas along with a crazy slice that I had never tried anything like before.  After some debate, I landed on the Pappas slice which amounts to a thin crust round pie with mozzarella on the bottom, sauce on top with fresh garlic and olive oil drizzle.  Many of the local grandma pizzas are comprised the same way, just on a different crust.  I found that the crust was soft and tender with some flop, and it was nicely baked and reheated to its peak form.  The flavor was intense without being overwhelming with a wonderfully sweet and savory sauce and pungent garlic.  The high quality cheese was delicious, gooey, and stringy (I could only imagine the cheese pull from a full pie) and the olive oil left a very pleasant and almost buttery flavoring to finish.  Overall, it was a very easy pizza to love with a ton of flavor and some elegant simplicity to it.

Nicely browned bottom of the Pappas pizza, which flips a traditional pizza on its head by placing mozzarella cheese "on the skin" and sauce on top then drizzled with olive oil and added garlic.

For my crazy slice, I went with the stuffed barbeque chicken and onion ring pizza. The slice had to weigh 2 pounds in itself.  I've had 12" hoagies that weighed less!  The pizza was an absolute beast to behold, but carefully crafted to have an interesting medley of textures and flavors.  A double crust pizza can sometimes become monotonous to eat, but every bite had something different to offer. The barbeque sauce was smoky and sweet, making it a bit messy to eat, but I probably would have been upset if my shirt came out unscathed and unstained after tackling such a monstrous culinary cut!  Many will probably opt for the fork and knife, but that's just not my style.  Fortunately I wore a dark shirt as you can see in the video!

Detroit Style Chicken and Waffle Pizza at Biaggio - Does it get any crazier than this?!

Beyond the insane number of types of pizzas the restaurant offers, Biaggio also has an extensive menu of Italian dishes, sandwiches, subs, appetizers deserts, and more.  It's safe to say there's something for everyone in Mr. Ruffino's neighborhood.  What else can I say, it was a great visit, I enjoyed the pizza, and I'm very grateful for Joe offering a few minutes of his time and energy to share his passion with me.  If you are traveling through Allentown, I can easily say this place is a great place to stop as it's easy to get to and you're going to get speedy service and something totally unique or if you prefer - comfortably familiar.

The Ratings

Restaurant: Biaggio's Pizzeria
Location: 1526 N Cedar Crest Blvd, Allentown, PA 18104
Date: March 2021
Eat In/Take Out: Eat In

Pizza Ordered: Pappas Pizza (Slice)
Price: $3.00
Crust: 7.9
Sauce: 8.2
Cheese: 7.8
Overall Taste: 8.1
Crispy/Cooked Properly: 7.6
Overall Value: 7.3
OVERALL RATING: 7.9
Similar to: Rosario's

Pizza Ordered: Stuffed BBQ Chicken Slice
Price: $4.25
Crust: 7.5
Sauce: N/A
Cheese: 7.6
Overall Taste: 8.1
Crispy/Cooked Properly: 7.7
Overall Value: 7.6
OVERALL RATING: 7.7
Similar to: Franco's

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