October 4, 2018

Pijja pijja

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I got a ping uncharacteristically early this morning from Fergie.  He seemed to have developed a craving for pizza, and asked whether I was free to check out Kytaly.  This was, of course, the much ballyhooed new joint serving Neapolitan pizza with recipes from Franco Pepe of Pepe in Grani.  I knew it had been making waves among the small circle of local food media, but I haven't paid too much attention to it so far.

Let's face it, I'm not a connoisseur when it comes to pizza.  In fact, I'm a philistine.  The first pizza I've ever had, nearly four decades ago, was Shakey's Pizza in Taipei.  A few years later in Tokyo I was introduced to the gourmet experience that was Pizza Hut, where I felt like a country bumpkin for not knowing that one ate pizza with knife and fork.  During my college years in Spittsbush Pittsburgh my school introduced Domino's Pizza as part of the student meal plan, while TV commercials from Little Caesars ensured that the phrase "Pizza! Pizza!" was forever burned into my memory.  Strangely enough, my years in New York did not endear me to "the slice" from Ray's.

I still eat pizza from Pizza Hut, much to Hello Kitty's dismay - and I still haven't had a "real" Neapolitan pizza in Napoli.  I did get a quick introduction last year at Casa Don Alfonso, but I didn't find it amazing.  But since Fergie wanted to check out the place, I happily obliged and joined him for lunch.

I thought we would be pushing it by ordering two pizzas, but figured we should go for it anyway.

Margherita DOP - of course we need to start with a classic!  Made with San Marzano DOP tomatoes of course!  And Mozzarella di Bufala Campagna DOP.

We were told that their dough is on the wet side, and this sure was soft and chewy.  Once the tomatoes have been cooked, the juices released added to the sogginess of the dough.

Sole nel Piatto - Fergie chose this one from the list recommended to us as soon as he heard the word "anchovies", which in this case came from Cetara.  Throw some Piennolo tomatoes, Calazzo black olives, basil, and oregano... and you've got something that's much better than whatever Fergie and family had a couple of days ago at a private club...  Definitely more heavy-handed than the margherita, but still very nice.

Fergie was pretty happy, and no doubt will make numerous repeat visits with his hungry family.  As for me... I shall happily remain a philistine... but I'll probably make an occasional visit when someone wants to go.

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