Why did two pizzeria-owning friends open new slice shops just 250 feet apart in New York City? Purely by accident, it turns out.

Frank Tuttolomondo, owner of Mama’s Too on New York City’s Upper West Side, had been looking for a new downtown space closer to where many of his customers lived. When he found what he was looking for in the West Village, he went for it.

Then, at dinner with his buddy Massimo Laveglia, owner of L’Industrie, Tuttolomondo learned of Laveglia’s plan to expand into the same neighborhood—just one block away from the new Mama’s Too, Eater.com reports.

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Mama’s Too opened in March 2024 at 325 Bleecker Street, not long after L’Industrie’s new location launched at nearby 104 Christopher Street in late October 2023.

We’re pretty similar,” Tuttolomondo told Eater. “We both do gelato. We both do sandwiches.”

Has anything changed between the two friends? Well, this is, after all, the pizza industry, characterized more by camaraderie than competition. “There is nothing to worry about,” Laveglia said. “People want to try both pizzas.”

Tuttolomondo, the grandson of the woman who founded the original Mama’s Pizza in 1959, prides himself in serving what he calls “a very different kind of slice” that can’t be pigeonholed as Neapolitan or New York style. “For the most part, we have our own pizza,” he told Edible Manhattan in January 2020. “We don’t have a name for it.”

In a November 2018 review of Mama’s Too, Pete Wells of The New York Times called it “an informal but very serious pizzeria [that] has learned how to genetically modify pizza.”

“The bulge of crust at the edge of what Mama’s Too calls the ‘house slice’ is brown, more rough than smooth and baked to a ferocious crackle,” Wells wrote. “You could tear it off and enjoy it on its own, or maybe with butter or olive oil, just as you can with the best Neapolitans. Yet the flat layer of crust on the bottom is firm, without the soupy center of the Neapolitan style. True to New York form, you can hold it in the air by the curved rim and it will stay flat and parallel to the floor.”

In January 2022, Bryan Kim, writing for The Infatuation, compared Mama’s Too to Prince St. Pizza, noting that Tuttolomondo’s team “makes some of the best pizza within walking distance of Central Park.”

Kim continued, “The main attraction here is the square slice covered in thick little pieces of pepperoni, the edges of which reach toward the sky as if thanking the pizza gods for making them so delicious. It’s crunchy on the bottom and crispy around [the] edges, with a sweet and garlicky sauce under what would seem like an excessive amount of melted mozzarella, if melted mozzarella weren’t such an objectively desirable food.”

Laveglia opened the first L’Industrie in Williamsburg in 2017, and it quickly became one of New York’s most acclaimed pizza shops. When the latest location opened in October last year, TimeOut noted that L’Industrie is “considered by many to be one of the best places to get pizza in NYC.”

With L’Industrie and Mama’s Too stores now perched within 250 feet of each other, Eater noted, “having them so close makes this one of the best blocks for New York pizza, probably in the world.”

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