Pictou County Pizza

Check out the PC Pizza Wars video series HERE, or keep reading for info on Pictou County Pizza!

I am fully aware of the fact that people everywhere, and I mean around the world everywhere, make bold claims that the pizza from their hometown is the best pizza you could possibly find.  This is not something that’s unique to people from Pictou County.  What IS unique to people from Pictou County, is that when they say it, they’re telling the truth.

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In the interest of full disclosure, I will admit that this half of The Local Traveler is from Pictou County.  But that changes nothing.  It IS the best pizza in the world.  There are blogs, facebook pages and Kijiji posts dedicated to it.  At least two restaurants in Halifax have put Pictou County Pizza on their menu to attract the many PC ex-pats (and others in the know) through their doors.  It has been shipped around the world from Fort McMurray to Afghanistan.  Pizza Hut once tried to set up shop in New Glasgow.  It didn’t last very long.

What makes PC pizza so good?  The reasons are fourfold.  First of all, the bread is thick and chewy.  None of this thin crust foolishness.  We PCers like our pizza to have some substance.  Secondly, we don’t mess around with no generic red sauce on our ‘za.  Spicy brown sauce only.

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Note the spicy brown sauce.

Then, it gets loaded with thick slices of Brothers pepperoni.  Every self-respecting pepperoni pizza should have enough of a meat buffer so that no cheese comes near the dough.  And finally, the donair sauce.  Yes, you can find this anywhere in Nova Scotia (the rest of the world is only now catching on to this awesome flavour medley).  But in PC, we don’t coat.  We dip.

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Note the abundance of Brothers pepperoni.

That brings us to which Pictou County pizza establishment to try.  Here is where is gets complicated, but in my opinion, it really doesn’t need to be.  You have plenty of choices.  Alice’s, Andre’s, Acropole New Glasgow, Acropole Westville, Sam’s in Abercrombie, Sam’s in Trenton, Sam’s in Stellarton, Sam’s in New Glasgow.  PC residents argue vehemently over which is the best, comparable only to how they argue over hockey teams during the playoffs.  But to be honest, they are all relatively the same, unless you have the practiced palette of a born and bred PCer.

Legend has it that they are all the result of three Greek brothers who came to Pictou County and set up a pizza shop.  The current crop of pizza shops are run by them and their offspring.*  So, the recipe for the pizza, pizza sauce and donair sauce is all the same.  That said, for a slice, Acropole in New Glasgow is the best and for a full pizza, Sam’s in Abercrombie is the best.

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*This is what I’ve been told over the years.  Please send any info you might have on the history of Pictou County pizza to localtravelerns@gmail.com or post it in the comments section.  PS: the use of the word “legend” gives me license to make up whatever I want about it.



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100 thoughts on “Pictou County Pizza

  1. I’ve seen it advertised at Durty Nelly’s but haven’t checked it out yet.

  2. Hands down, the absolute best pizza anywhere is in Pictou County! For pizza, I recommend Sam’s in Trenton, and for donairs it has to be Acropole. Unless it’s cheese & four meats pizza. Only Alice’s gets this right.

  3. I grew up in NG and if there’s one thing I miss the most about the place, it’s the pizza. I’m going to have to check out Plaza Pizza.

  4. Where is this Plaza Pizza you speak of…. Hami’s on Alderney used to make a pretty close copy but sadly, Hami’s is now gone.

  5. You can get the sauce for I think ten dollars in Sam’s Stellarton. (Trenton is the best though)

  6. Sam’s in Stellarton actually sells their sauce for $8 a bottle!! You can get 4-5 pizzas out of a bottle…depending how much sauce you like!!
    I live in Elmsdale now and can’t get a good pizza here…so when we are home we buy a bottle or two and put it into smaller containers and freeze it!! Then we thaw it in the microwave and mix it up well before we use it on a pizza!! We use brother’s pepperoni with it and it tastes just like Sam’s pizza!!! Love it!!!

    • Police Station Pizza is great. The crust is unlike aihytnng I’ve ever had, plus just watching the guys take orders is a great show. I haven’t heard about a Police Station Pizza in Robinson, but a few years ago they opened one in Zelienople. Frank’s pizza, also in Ambridge, is delicious as well, but in a different way. It’s round pizza from fresh crust they spread by hand in front of you. Their sauce is the best I’ve ever had. It tastes like fresh tomatoes. They also use thick cut pepperoni. Yum.

  7. When you eat your PC pizza and it leaves your body one way or the other within thirty minutes, it puts it within the same quality of food as Mcdonald’s.

    • Sacrilege! There is no comparison! PC pizza is like nectar from the gods!

    • Wow, you are like the pizza scrooge, there is a reason why everyone across the country misses and craves this pizza when they aren’t at home in PC. When you leave Halifax airport you can see people with pizza boxes from Acropole taking it to their family out west for crying out loud!!!

    • Yeah, it would be too much for me too!! I would give it about a week or so after you eat it in the fridge. You can use it in so many ways toss a bit into a salad, in a sawidnch, in soup I’m sure you’ll find ways to use it up! And if you don’t feel like getting tempeh, you can also make this pizza with some seasoned black beans or something like that. Hope you enjoy it!

  8. I love this and it is so true, but you forgot about Ted’s pizza shop in Stellarton.

  9. So agreed, best pizza ever. My dad is from PC and he has created his own “brown sauce”. George, from Sam’s in Stellerton, has agreed that it is comparable to his own. Pictou County pizza is the best around. My sisters have our father make it for them when he visits them. Best ever <3

  10. Best pizza ever…Acropole in NG will half cook the pizza and put it in a special container if you let them know it’s for travel/being shipped..Done that many times to bring some back to Montreal

  11. The LB Diner (use to be in Trenton) had AMAZING ZA!!! Very comparable to Acropole/Sama, their brown peppered sauce was actually a Vegan sauce by rights and twas the best in town…..oh how i miss thier Pizza. Luckily I am one of 4 persons who have the recipe. Alas …someday perhaps i too shall open a pizza joint!

  12. Acropole in Westville is the best ever. But I must add that Ted’s Pizza in Stellarton is also very good. Pictou County pizza is the best hands down!!!!!

  13. Ive been to all of these shoppes,and more…
    Acropole is a hell of a slice,Sams does have a bomb ass pizza…BUT TED’S TAKES THE CAKE
    Anyone whos had cannot deny
    thank you
    Ps they put garlic in their don-sauce it adds a nice little zing haha

  14. I worked there and got fired and still refuse to stop eating their great pizza

  15. You’ll Never Ever EAT any “PIZZA” Better Than “PICTOU COUNTY” WE are The Best Always Will be!

  16. PC Pizza is the best pizza around. I’m from the west side of NG and now living in the city and Halifax pizza come no wheres near PC pizza

  17. My daughter has introduced this pizza to her friends in Yellowknife…bringing it with her each 13 hour trip back and they are in love with it, along with the donair sauce and pizza sauce from Sam’s, another proof of its popularity worldly.

  18. Theres also a new resturant in New Glasgow called East Side Pizziera, which is the old owner of Teds Pizza in Stellerton years ago (not the ones running it now..they suck) That has an great pizza…one of the best. Same type as the others. But your right Pictou County Pizza is the best in the world.!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  19. This is awesome! I am a little sad that you didn’t mention Kelly’s, out at the Scotsburn Foodland, but you can’t get them all. I was recently home to visit my parents, and had forgotten what real pizza tastes like. PC knows how to rock it, that’s for sure!

  20. Plaza Pizza comes close, but his chicken wing pizza is the best, and he doens’t make it often.

  21. We make real authentic “Pictou County” pizza here at the Sand Dollar in River John! Its taken a while to perfect the recipe and technique, but we’ve got it down! My sauce is a labor of love that I do every week, which takes about 4-5 hours to make well. When we say “Pictou County Pizza” everyone understands except for the tourist crowd. But once they have had it, they fall in love. I grew up on Sam’s Pizza and have great memories of going to the restaurant with my parents.

  22. My con is DYING in Dartmouth eating what passes for pizza there!!!!!! WHERE is this PLAZA PIZZA of which you speak oh wise one?????

  23. I agree….I am old enough to remember when jim and george opened the first sams on foord street in stellarton. We teens were very much burgers fries and gravy in those days and no one ordered the pizza( what the #$#$^is pizza?)They started giving away slices to try and before long we all loved it!!! the secret is the sauce it looks gross but tastes wonderful .that and big pieces of toppings (not ground up}

  24. Any history you need I can fill in some of the blanks. It all started with three brothers Andre,Demitri(Jim),and George Cougias.Sams restaurants are all named after Spryo which is Greek for the Sam. Alice is also a sister of the Cougias’. As for who owwns each separate restaurant that is where things get complicated.

  25. i agree but have to say that you forgot to mention GIGS pizza in ALMA,it is as good as the others (and maybe better than some).

  26. I’m originally from Pictou County… and smuggled the world’s best pizza into Germany for our daughter when she was in University there. I’ve shipped it by bus… many times… to Acadia University. And now that we live in Whitehorse, Yukon… friends have brought it about 8000 kms to be eaten in my kitchen here. There IS no other pizza that can compare to it… the only downfall being that speaking of it brings longing for just a bite. Fridays after work are the worst of times when you just crave that slice!

  27. I have tried pizza in alot of places I’ve visited around the world and this article I endorse 100%

  28. What about crown pizza in Pictou? Of all the PICTOU county pizza joints there is none mentioned in Pictou. Last time I checked there is a accrople pizza joint in the needs, where grecko tried to open a pizza joint there. I like the article but lets not forget about Pictou. After all it is pictou county.

  29. Got to say coming from Toronto, I don’t like the brown sauce it’s gross!! I miss the pizza back home for sure!! The real Italian style pizza’s!!!

  30. I have recently moved to Alberta and the pizza is terrible, I have lived in pictou county all my life and have worked making pizza at the Acropole in westville , sams in stellarton and sams Trenton , all of these restaurants offer tasty pizza .. All I can say is please bring PC Pizza to the wild west before I have to move back to the east coast for some decent pizza !!!

  31. First of all get the story right people .. pictou county pizza was introduced by (George Kouyas , Jim kouyas) from stellarton. the rest is history . All started in Stellarton .The sauce is only made from the original guy who started it and still makes it .. (George kouyas )So many people claim they know the story . Either way its the the best pizza in Canada :)

    • First of all, the sauce recipe was brought to Pictou County by the old Nick Manos, this is who should get all the credit for it!! It was brought back from Chicago. It was then given to Alice, from Alice’s Pizza, who made the sauce to try it out. Her brothers and their familes moved from Greece and lived in her home at that time. She showed them the recipe on how to make it. Shortly after this George and Jim opened up Sam’s in Stellarton.. then Alice’s Pizza opened up second and last but not least, Acropole in Westville.. these are the original 3 pizza places from the Cougias family! Also, the donair sauce was not originated from Sam’s, Acropole, Alice’s, etc.. it was originated by Frank who owned Papa’s Pizza and Donair down by the tracks on Stewart Street. There you have it! :)

      • What about Old Sparta’s? He was a brother wasn’t he? We used to get ours there when I was a wee one 80′s-90′s and my Dad still talks about it. Now though, I’m an Acropole “slice” girl all the way (full pizzas just aren’t the same just like you pointed out in the article). Going to have to put the “Plaza Pizza” to the test now!

      • No, Chris and Irene were not related to the Cougias family. They were friends of the family who also came over from Greece and later opened their pizza shop, Sparta Pizza.. They opened up their shop before Alice opened hers. Alice was the 2nd in the Cougias family to open her store though after having a penny goods store first! :)

  32. You for got Ted’s in stellarock… It’s been a few months since I’ve had it and I’m seriously considering having one fedex’d to me here in AB… At least it will be cheap shipping since I work for FedEx!

  33. I got to throw my to cents in and say try Scott’s Pizza it use to be in Westville but moved out to green hill i think. it’s somewhere out by the “new” school.

  34. I am home grown and have tried them all, but my all time fav has always been Scott’s Pizza in Stellerton! Best pizza, slices & garlic fingers with cheese! Mmmm…. Can’t wait to come home this summer! :). Alberta pizza sucks! Donairs dipping sauce rules! Lol

  35. Raised on the sh t..You like a spicier sauce you go to Andre’s, Teds does it right too and how can you talk about zzaa without mentioning the homies who started it all Sam”s..Greece may not have their finances in order but they sure can throw down some pizza dough..anyone looking for these establishments,they are located in Stellarton..Go down the 104 and hang a straight between Westvillle and New Glasgow…lol

  36. Im pretty sure that Alice’s in New Glasgow was the first to open up in the county. Every one seems to think it was SAMs .

    • Actually it WAS Sam’s in Stellarton who opened up first with this sauce. The brothers and their families lived with Alice when they moved here from Greece. Alice learned the “brown sauce” from the old Nick Manos and after making it herself to find out what it tasted like, her brothers opened up Sam’s. Alice was the second one to open her store! :)

  37. Ex-PC person myself. We have a Sam’s Donair here in Lethbridge. And as far as I’m concerned they make the best Donairs in Alberta. They also came from Halifax so I would say they are the best in Canada. Can hardly wait till I taste the best pizza in PC. Now if I could get the best fish and chips I ever tasted from Truro (at the train station) to here. I would be in seventh heaven.It would be like having a little bit of N S here in Alberta.

  38. From Someone Who Knows The Truth .. you have the story wrong , sams pizza originated from george kouyas , then did brother jim follow george to pictou county , so for all you out there george was the first from the kouyas family into pictou county , then the rest followed , jim and george got together opened the first sams in stellarton , the sauce was originated in montreal where george in his younger years was working in a pizza restraunt then he made the move to pictou county and introduced the famous pizza sauce to the county . thats the truth PC .. from PC insider ..

  39. I am formerly from pictou county and I agree that our pizzas are great…….but Annie’s Pizza in Cache Creek B.C gives ours a big run for the money……..

  40. Andres in Stellarton is my Fav, howver, any pizza from PC is amazing!!

  41. Judith…..did you know who makes those fantastic fish and chips in Truro by the railway station? Another P.C. connection…..the Andersons from P.C.,,,,Gerard and Dave run the successful restaurant, Murphy`s, in Truro. Can`t beat `em!
    Cheers!
    Ron

  42. My girlfriend raves about this pizza non stop, I’m looking to get her a pie (her favorite is Acropole) delivered out here to Brooklyn NY for her birthday. I know it can be done, but I can’t seem to find the resources! Any one know of a way to get PC pizza shipped internationally??

  43. Seriously why does it not say where the pc pizza in halifax is?? I don’t care how it was invented. Plaza pizza is one of the locations, what’s the other??

  44. Pizza Plaza is closed until August 13th for renovations. I checked last week.

  45. Pictou County pizza rocks..I get it every weekend when I go to NG to pick up the step kids…however.. pizza in halifax that claims it is as good.. is sadly not.. it isnt even a close attempt….maybe the “boys from Trenton” need to try again.

  46. Ok here’s one for you…does anyone remember MacEachern’s Pizza in Westville. My ex husband and I opened and ran it for 11 years. We brought the secrets with us, after both working at the Acropole in Westville. I live in Ontario now and have never found one here that is comparible and miss PC pizza very much. I ocassionally make my own and everyone raves about it when I do..guess I still have the touch.

    • You should start doing special orders out in Ontario. Especially considering the frequency of flights out of Toronto. Since writing this post we’ve heard a ton of stories about trying to ship Pictou county pizza all over the world.

    • I grew up on MacEachern’s pizza and have been living in Haliax for 20 years. Every time I go home to PC, I come home with some. Many of the pizza places in PC are very good and the style of the crust and sauce are very similar. R & W Pizza, near the old train station in New Glasgow was also good years ago. My brother in law (who is not from PC) says that this is the best pizza he has ever had (right Rob??). I’m going home for July 1st and I’ll be taking at least 2 back to Halifax with me from Acropole in New Glasgow. Ah…. The memories.

  47. Looks delish! Thanks much for this post – and thank you for following me. I look forward to your comments. Pizza it will be in Pictou County, when we visit fron Arizona.

  48. If my ass didn’t explode everytime I ate whole milk cheese, I would be all over that. As well as the fact that my body has decided to become Jewish and has made me completely allergic to pork, I am looking a bit longingly at that pizza…. *sniff*

  49. There is no more Plaza pizza but you can go to la cucina in dartmouth crossing to get PC pizza, the owners are related to the onwes of cafe italia, La Cucina cleams to have PC pizza

  50. I love my pc pizza but I work for bar in calgary that sell pc brown sauce pizza just like home . it call below deck tavern .

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