F, M at 14th St.; 1, 2, 3 at 14th St.
American Express, MasterCard, Visa
3rd St. to 21st St., Broadway to Tenth Ave.
This venue is closed.
With dozens of local pizzerias sporting the name Ray’s and many claiming to be the first, Famous Ray’s of Greenwich Village is certainly a contender for Ur-Ray’s status. It was founded in 1973 by Mario Di Rienzo, a veteran of embassy kitchens, who retired in the 1990s and passed the torch to Sam Singh. Today, the restaurant remains a quintessential New York institution, with its beige-and-powder-blue-tiled walls, faux brickface, orange-brown-tiled floors, and an elaborate mosaic of a Roman fountain. It appeals to St. Vincent hospital docs, beat cops, and a colorful assortment of hungry twentysomethings—both in school and out. Just skip the “Famous” slices with their thick layers of gummy cheese and opt instead for a simple bacon slice; its smokiness is a wonderful change from sausage or pepperoni. The unsung Sicilian square also excels with a crust that knows how to balance a crispy exterior with a chewy interior.Recommended Dishes
Sicilian slice, $2.35; cheese slice with bacon, $3