LA Pizza with Quarter Sheets

By Drake's

May 31, 2024

LA Pizza with Quarter Sheets

From the outside it doesn’t look like much, a squat, slightly wonky white building, a little sign in the window, the highway—that constant LA soundtrack—rumbling nearby, but starting from early evening until well into the night, there’ll be a queue outside of Quarter Sheets in Echo Park, a pizza restaurant that has quickly become one of the city’s most sought-after tables. 

Developing from a pandemic passion project by the couple Aaron Lindell and Hannah Ziskin, a sort of ‘pseudo restaurant’ set out on the lawn of their Glendale home, Quarter Sheets was recently named one of America’s best restaurants by The New York Times, who noted that "even the simplest sides here are a delight,” while accruing an army of local regulars, visitors and plaudits. 

“It was busy from the start,” says Ziskin, who juggles everything from front of house and admin to pastry chef duties (people come here as much for her signature Princess cakes and desserts as they do the pizza), while Lindell oversees the oven and pizza operation.

“We had friends help us build everything,” says Ziskin as Lindell kneads dough in the restaurant’s kitchen, experimental music from his vast vinyl collection playing out of the bar speakers. “We found the bar on Craigslist, we picked up furniture and art from flea markets and worked with people we knew… we wanted it to have our personality.” 

So, the pizza. Along with a rotating menu of playfully-named one-offs, there’s Detroit-adjacent dish style, classic Sicilian and, on our visit during a sunny lunchtime where we had the place to ourselves, an ultra thin and crispy ‘Jersey’ style that Lindell refers to as bar pizza. “This is the sort of pizza that you’d have with a few beers” he says, “really simple and fun to eat. We try to strike that balance between the staples, and some more experimental kinds that we can have fun with. A margarita for me is just cheese, basil, sauce. I don’t think that’s very controversial, but there are certain things that don’t need to be messed with.”

Having both spent years working in high-end restaurants and for private clients, when the opportunity arises they like to push things a bit. One pizza is called The Polish Yacht Club, a real place in Detroit, we're told, near where Lindell grew up. “It’s kind of based on a pierogi,” says Ziskin. “We use amazing potatoes from a local farmer, cheese that we buy from the Armenian market in Glendale, chives, smoked sea salt, onion and cream sauce.”

One of Quarter Sheets’ former staff was a vegan with a taste for… onions. “He’d bake a whole onion and just eat that for dinner,” says Ziskin as we finish our pizzas at the bar counter, “so we made Mike’s Baked Onion. Onion six ways with crushed up Funyons. Trust me, it’s really good." We do. 

Starting in April, the restaurant now takes reservations, which will do little to quell the queue outside. “A lot of people don’t think LA is a pizza town,” says Ziskin, “but I like to think we’re taking a slightly different approach and hopefully people are taking notice. We’re still packed every evening after a couple of years of being open."

“We’re both chefs,” she adds, so it’s been an adventure opening our own place. “We do what we’re able to do, and we’re working it out as we go.”

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