Adriatico’s New York Style Pizza won Best Pizza for The Lantern’s Best of OSU 2017.

When Ohio State students walk down Neil Avenue, there is an intoxicating aroma that overcomes their nostrils. The smell is easily recognized as Adriatico’s New York Style Pizza.

Adriatico’s, located on 265 W. 11th Ave., has been serving pizza in Columbus for more than 38 years. Andy Vandenberg, better known to his employees as “V,” has been at Adriatico’s for 21 years and is currently a manager.  He said the restaurant prides itself on tradition, old-fashioned values and good pizza.

He also said there’s no reason for him to leave Adriatico’s.

“This place takes care of me, and the people I’m surrounded by make me feel most at home,” Vandenberg said.

Adriatico’s never pre-makes pizzas, said Loni Sammons, a second-year in political science and server at the restaurant.  

“We make each pizza fresh when they are ordered,” Sammons said. “There are two times in the day they make the dough and put it out on the pan but we don’t pre-make pizzas.”

Sammons, who has been working at Adriatico’s for a little more than a year now, came across the pizza joint just out of convenience. Her dorm happened to be close to Adriatico’s and said she soon came to realize just how great it was.

“The environment is just always positive, and they put a lot more into the pizza than just the ingredients,” Sammons said. “Every time they make something the cooks put their all into it.”

The OSU connection doesn’t stop at Sammons. She said most of the cooks and servers are students.

Sammons said she believes the restaurant has become a staple by remaining true to its core.

“The owner, Greg, doesn’t need to advertise. They get tons of business,” Sammons said. “It’s like a hidden gem with good pizza, and if you come in on a Friday, you may just catch the owner making pizzas in the kitchen.”