Vesuvio's - Wilkes-Barre

Vesuvio's Delicious Detroit and Many of Other Pizza Options Make for a Great WB Stop

Vesuvio's is one of only a handful of pizzerias making Detroit Style Pizza locally in NEPA.

Vesuvio's has 3 locations in NEPA including Drums, Hazleton, and Wilkes-Barre.  I had visited the Hazleton location back in 2011, just before I started doing pizza reviews and recall being impressed with their NY style pizzas and the sausage rolls that my friend who accompanied me recommended.  The Wilkes-Barre location vaulted up my very lengthy list of local pizzerias to get to once a received recommendations from a number of reliable members of the NEPA Nation who told me to try the Detroit Style Pizza they just added to the menu.


Detroit Style Pizza is something I've been talking about for about 2 years now as it has gained popularity nationally.  It hasn't gone mainstream in NEPA, but many people are asking where they can get it and I take my duty to public pizza service seriously so it was time to give this a try!  What is Detroit style pizza?  You can read more about that here, but essentially it's a pan pizza with a spongy, Sicilian-like crust, smothered with cheese which is deliberately pressed against the edge of the pan to caramelize and crisp up, and sauce applied in stripes across the top.

A look at the crispy, deep brown, caramelized cheese edge and golden brown bottom crust.

Vesuvio's is located at 111 N Main St. in Wilkes-Barre, just about 2 blocks off the square on the Kings College side of Downtown.  It's easy to get to and offers a ton of options.  When you first enter, it has a laid-back college vibe where you can order at the counter and watch some of the many TV's while you wait and take it to go, or you can dine in the relaxed dining area.  They also have an attached small sports bar and an outdoor patio.  Add in delivery options and you have a full service restaurant and bar complex ready to serve you during their lengthy and late operating hours.

The deliciously crispy edge on the DSP from Vesuvio's.

The service was very friendly and fast.  The First Lady of NEPA Pizza and I ordered a Detroit Style Pizza, a buffalo chicken cheesesteak, and a ham and cheese sub.  The subs were ready in no time at all.  I dug into the buffalo chicken cheesesteak and immediately asked myself, "Why did it take me this long to try such a delicious combination?!"  I had never thought to order or make such a common-sense sandwich in all my years, but this experience will forever change that as it was fantastic.  Generous amount of meat, just the right amount of medium/mild buffalo sauce, and some gooey cheese made this a homerun.  The First Lady also enjoyed her sub as well.


We sat in a booth where I had a clear view of the pizza counter and ovens which is always (sadly) invigorating for me!  I observed the pizza guy doing his thing putting pizza after pizza together, including what looked like a stuffed steak and cheese pizza with a apple pie-like lattice top crust which looked really interesting.  I then watched him pull our pizza out of the oven in what appeared to be the fabled LloydPans Detroit Pan that I constantly use and recommend to people.  Bonus points there!


The pizza itself was cooked perfectly and looked like a pretty authentic version of a DSP.  They elected to spread the sauce more uniformly across the top of the pizza rather than the traditional stripe, which was a nice change of pace from all of the Detroits I've been making at home.  I also found that it keep the cheese more moist and gooey.  The cheese blend was by far my favorite part as it was gooey, stringy, buttery, sharp, and supremely flavorful.  I formulated a guess that Muenster was a component in the cheese and introduced myself and asked the pizza guy after we were done.  He politely let me know that there was no Muenster but there were 4 other cheeses in the blend.  I'm not in the business of sharing people's recipes so I'll leave you all to guess the blend in the comments!


The crust was spongy, chewy, and flavorful.  The sauce was sweet and flavorful enough to nicely contrast the thicker crust and generous amounts of cheese.  Vesuvio's executed flawless proportions and flavor contrast in this one.  It was really delicious, but after eating half a hoagie it was a one slice stop for us.  I definitely recommend you give Vesuvio's Detroit pizza along with that stuffed cheesesteak pizza (which I saw being made and several others recommended) and the buffalo chicken cheesesteak.  What else do you enjoy from Vesuvio's?  Let me know in the comments!


The Ratings

Restaurant: Vesuvio's Pizzeria and Sports Bar
Location: 111 N Main St, Wilkes-Barre, PA 18701
Date: May 2021
Eat In/Take Out: Eat In

Pizza Ordered: Detroit Style Pizza
Price: $
Crust: 7.4
Sauce: 7.8
Cheese: 9.2
Overall Taste: 8.5
Crispy/Cooked Properly: 7.6
Overall Value: 7.4
OVERALL RATING: 7.9
Similar to: Franco's, Nearra's

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