Pizza. One of Italy’s most famous exports. Its versatility and adaptability – just consider the possible toppings – and simplicity accounts for its worldwide popularity. We visit a favorite pizzeria, ranked in Italy’s official 50 Top Pizza 2022 list.
What makes a great pizza
There is a battle that fixates many Americans. Chicago vs. New York Pizza: which one is the best? The answer is, of course, Italian pizza. And there is only one Italian pizza – pizza Napoli (or pizza napoletana).
No need to overthink it. Great pizza should have a round, regular crust. Ideally charred, bubbled and risen to, at least, 2cm high. Look for a brown speckled base. Not burned. Think the back of a hand aged with liver spots. Beware a yellow base. This betrays too much flour and will result in a bitter taste.
The centre should be soft and even. Lightly spongy.
On top, let the colors of Italy be your guide. Look for a vivid red tomato sauce, pure white mozzarella and unapologetically green basil leaves.
Italy’s 50 Top Pizza
It is no surprise that Napoli, the birthplace of pizza, and the region of Campania should dominate Italy’s 50 Top Pizza 2022 rankings, the definitive list. But Puglia’s own pizza evolution continues. At number 45 on the list is Luppolo & Farina, one of only two Puglia pizzerias to make the top 50.
Take me to your pizza
Luppolo & Farina is a bright, modern pizzeria, with around 200 covers, although the restaurant layout makes it feel a little more intimate. There is a very decent selection of starters. The staff, young and enthusiastic, will take you through the menu, which offers suggestions as to beer, wine or spirit that best suits the pizza.
The pizza selection ranges from seasonal, through classic and onto their evolution range (Five Seasons, Five Cheese). Then there’s a special southern Italian influences (<<contaminazione>>) range.
The only challenge of the amazing menu is what to choose. It’s a tough decision to make, and having eaten well, we’re still spoilt for choice.
According to the 50 Top Pizza list, Primo Sole is the must eat pizza. From the Evolution Pizza range: fior di latte mozzarella – preserved yellow Piennolo cherry tomatoes – guanciale of Santoro charcuterie factory – crispy onion at 10,00€.
Worth the wait
Top of our still to eat list, from the seasonal list (we’re waiting for the change of season):
Red base Slow Food Presidium – Manduria tomato sauce – local oregano – fresh basil – Slow Food Presidium Taranto mussels – garlic-flavoured oil. To which is added parsley pesto – fried mussels. 10,00€
Seared salt cod – cherry tomatoes baked in wood-fired oven – oregano – local capperino – olives leccine sprinkled with breadcrumbs and fried onion rings. 15,00€
Pizzas start from 5,00€