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“The new pizzeria has seen a really busy start, which has been fantastic. It seems [Belgravians] are traditionalists because the margherita and bufala are leading the charge [as the most popular toppings] at the moment. We have always really loved the area but struggled to find a location that had a nice, traditional feel rather than a more modern feel. We were so excited when Buckingham Palace Road came up, as it really felt like somewhere we could call home.
Two things essentially make our dough special. Firstly we import the best flour from the Caputo mill in Naples, visiting them at least twice a year and working really closely with the owners. Secondly, the team and ensuring we have the best guys and girls in our kitchen to make sure the dough is perfect every time. To that end we don’t have a rigid, set in stone dough recipe. Instead the teams tweak from our basic version based on weather, moisture content and yeast etcetera.
Our dough is made fresh in store every day using just four ingredients: flour, water, yeast and salt. It’s then proved for 48 hours to make sure the flavour is bang on. Each pizza is hand-stretched, topped and baked to order in a 500°C oven. It is a very skilled process and many of our guys have tens of years of experience as pizza chefs. The vast amount of our ingredients come direct from Italy, and more specifically Naples. Our mozzarella and tomatoes are both sourced from suppliers in and around Naples who we also meet with at least a couple of times a year to ensure we are getting the best quality we possibly can. Then – pepperoni, for example. People in Naples have no idea what pepperoni even is. We tried a British cured pepperoni, and some stuff from Italy, but actually, it turns out that the country that lives and dies by the smoked, paprika-based sausage is Hungary. So, we get that from Hungary.
We change our specials once a month and in March we had a Mimosa pizza in celebration of International Women’s Day. My own favourite on balance is probably still a traditional Neapolitan margherita. When done right it is impossible to beat.