Our Story

Sal’s Pizza in New Zealand was started by 2 longtime friends – Nick from Auckland, New Zealand and Ciaran from Queens, New York.

Here is how it all came to be…

Sal’s Story

1941: Salvatore Leo is born in a little town call Corato in the Puglia region of Southern Italy.

1951: Only 10 years old, Sal immigrates to New York City.

1959: Under the watchful eye of his family, Sal begins mastering the art of making authentic New York pizza by hand by strictly adhering to his family’s well-guarded pizza making techniques and secret recipes.

1975: ‘Sal’s Pizza of Little Neck’ opens and Sal’s legend starts to spread, becoming renowned for some of the finest and freshest pizza throughout the city.

2008: After a number of ‘recovery’ pizzas following a celebratory NYC New Years, the idea of bringing Authentic NY pizza to NZ was born.

Late 2008: Following successful blind taste tests using NZ water on some of Sal’s longest customers in NYC, we prove that NZ WATER WORKS to make Authentic New York Pizza.

2009: ‘Sal’s Authentic New York Pizza’ opens our first store in Auckland, and Brian Leo -’Son o’ Sal and pizza making prodigy’ decides to join us.

Many years later, Brian continues to train and mentor our pizza makers ensuring his family legacy lives on in every slice we serve.



We’ve had the good fortune of being made privy to a legendary pizza maker’s secret family recipe and have spent years perfecting Salvatore Leo’s well-guarded pizza making techniques.

We are proud to say all of our base ingredients are 100% AUTHENTIC and are imported to New Zealand. You will only find these at Sal’s:

  • Our signature slow-risen dough is made using genuine New York Milled Hard Spring Wheat Flour for that authentic New York base you can fold. Crispy on the outside, but light, tender and airy on the inside.
  • Our sweet tomato sauce is made fresh daily using Sal’s famous recipe and comes from Vine Ripened California Tomatoes.
  • Our 100% Premium Wisconsin Mozzarella is produced using the highest quality milk from sustainably farmed “happy cows”. (Wisconsin has been producing Cheese since the 18th century).
  • Our Famous New York Pepperoni and Italian Meatballs are exclusive to Sal’s.
  • Our Free Range Buffalo Wings are made with the Authentic “Original 1964 Buffalo” recipe.