Antonio’s Pizza by the Slice a favorite among students

By Brendan Deady

(Robert Rigo/Daily Collegian)
(Robert Rigo/Daily Collegian)

For all the praise University of Massachusetts Dining receives, local Amherst eateries give it a run for its money.

The town center is home to a plethora of restaurants and take-out joints able to quell almost any craving. Incoming students unperturbed by the ominous “freshman fifteen,” or who are just looking for a good slice, will want to check out Antonio’s Pizza by the Slice, located at 31 North Pleasant St.

Since opening its Amherst location in 1991, Antonio’s has been a favorite amongst locals and students. It has been voted “Best of the Valley” 23 years running by Northampton’s Valley Advocate. On any given weekend night, the pizza shop’s cramped interior resembles something of a mob scene; orders are shouted over conversations and sizzling grills, and ever-growing lines tend to spill out onto the streets.

And it’s not just the regulars that swear by the shop. It was voted number one on Buzzfeed’s “College Town Foods Worth Skipping Class For” list and given the top nod by as best restaurant in Amherst. Antonio’s shift manager Jay Carreiro credits the popularity to “quality of ingredients, variety of options and good service.”

While pizza is the only item on the menu, with a special that changes daily and dozens of inventive variations of the simple slice, it’s difficult to exhaust all that Antonio’s has to offer.

The menu is divided into four categories centered on chicken, meat, pesto or vegetarian choices. Some notable combinations are the buffalo chicken bleu cheese, BBQ steak burrito, avocado quesadilla and the spinach portabella.

Antonio’s is also an active member in the Amherst community. The shop donates gift cards as raffle prizes to student-run organizations, sponsors 5k charity runs and contributes pizza to Amherst Survival Center’s food pantry.

“It’s just our way of saying thanks to a town that’s helped us thrive,” Carreiro said.

Antonio’s is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 2:00 a.m. Delivery services are contracted out to Delivery Express based on Fearing Street.

Brendan Deady can be reached at [email protected]