Dig Into Authentic Detroit-Style Pizza Without Leaving Oregon

wild child pizza portland
Wild Child Pizza (wildchild.pizza)

If you’ve lived in Portland for any length of time (and I have) you know how frustrating it is to see that nearly every new restaurant in town is a pizza joint. “We don’t need any more pizza!” you may be lamenting, and I hear you but I’m also here to tell you that Wild Child Pizza is not like all the rest!

slice with ranch
huge slice with ranch, marcus harvey Google Local

For one, though there’s way too much pizza in Portland, they aren’t near enough places to get a Detroit-style* pizza and this is just what Wild Child delivers. Wild Child has two locations in the city, one on NE Alberta St and the other in the Pearl on NW Kearney Street. The Alberta location has been open just over a year now with the NW Portland one not far behind. In their short time in the city, they’ve made a name for themselves and I assure you, this is not the standard pizza fare you’ve grown tired of.

pizza supreme
pizza supreme, Wild Child Google Local

Detroit style pizza is made with an airy dough, similar to a focaccia bread and is baked in a deep square pan. Also, with Detroit style you'll find a nice crispy layer of cheese baked into the crust and the sauce comes on top of everything else. At Wild Child they make everything in house including their signature sourdough that’s aged and fermented for 72 hours, making a nice, spongy crust that's sturdy enough to hold everything together. Their housemade sauce is just a touch spicy, but not enough to throw you off and has just the right balance of sweetness. 

assorted slices
assorted slices, franklin frankel Google Local

Pizza can be purchased by the slice or a whole pie, and though a single slice will run you about $7, the pieces are huge and absolutely filling. Some of the most loved pizzas on the menu included the BBQ Chicken made with pulled rotisserie chicken, tangy bbq sauce, diced green onions, roasted red onions, Wisconsin brick cheese, and parmesan, the Harissa with roasted butternut squash, rose harissa, kale, leeks, Wisconsin brick cheese, and parmesan (they even have a vegan version of this), and the Pesto Chicken Bacon made with spicy pesto, chicken fired with crispy American bacon bits, Wisconsin brick cheese, ranch drizzle, and parmesan. Even the cheese pizza is fabulous and worth getting on its own!

pearl location
dining room Pearl, marcus harvey Google Local

They also have a monthly special and these are always so good and inventive you’ll wish they were on the menu all year round. Options like Peaches and Cream made with hot honey and arugula, Verde Carnitas, or the current “Work of Art-ichoke” made with artichokes marinated in Salmoriglio sauce, olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, basil, oregano, parsley, chili flakes, salt with garlicky spinach topped with marinara and parm. Other items not to be missed are the very large, and very yummy brownie, and their house made sauces like ranch dip, sriracha ranch, or vegan green goddess.

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bbq chicken
BBQ Chicken, Christopher Hames Google Local

The Alberta location is take-out only, and you have to place all orders online, not over the phone. There’s a small pickup window where you can watch the pizzas being made and a few benches in the small, heated area to sit on while you wait. You can also order delivery through a third-party like Uber Eats or DoorDash. The newer NW location has an indoor seating area with funky lights, a pool table, and pinball machines (it’s actually located in QD’s Bar).

pizza with boxes
pizza with boxes, Wild Child Google Local

Wild Child also has very cool merch for sale so if you become a fan, get yourself a hoodie, t-shirt, or trucker hat to spread the love. They also make a point to support the local art scene and their restaurants are adorned with art from local skateboarder and artist Sebo Walker and others. The team at Wild Child clearly has an eye for what was missing in Portland’s saturated pizza market, so get out there and try some!

*Sincere apologies to those who read the first version of this article where I incorrectly and shamefully referred to Wild Child as Chicago-style pizza instead of Detroit-style pizza.

Alberta Location:

Hours:

  • Sunday - Wednesday, 12:00pm - 9:00pm
  • Thursday - Saturday, 12:00pm - 10:00pm

Address: 2032 NE Alberta Street Portland 

Phone: 503-719-7328

Pearl Location 

Hours:

  • Sunday - Thursday, 12:00pm - 9:00pm
  • Friday &  Saturday, 12:00pm - 10:00pm

Address:1339 NW Flanders St Portland

Phone: 503-208-2582