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In the latest edition, the 2021 one presented a few weeks ago, the number of pizza places recommended reaches almost 100 with 12 new entries.
The increase over the past few years was majestic and numbers confirm this: in 2018 we had 68 reviews, then 85 in 2019 and 99 in 2020. These numbers however also included pizzerias abroad, which was not the case in 2021 for obvious reasons.
Yet putting numbers aside, it is good to highlight what these numbers imply: a "pop" food like pizza is becoming more and more attractive, in parallel with fine dining. The reason is simple: in both cases, the makers of this success incorporate in their work strong technical knowledge, constant research, innovative skills and a healthy respect for tradition. There's more: this growth experienced by fine pizza in the past 15 years is not something other branches of the restaurant industry have experienced, and for sure not at the same rhythm.
At the top, in terms of restaurants reviewed in the Guide, there is Lombardy (20 places), followed by Campania (14) and Lazio (10).
Of course, these are temporary numbers because the roads of pizza are truly endless. For instance, they have brought us to Sardinia, where one of the 2021 new entries is Pizzeria Bosco in Tempio Pausania, Sassari, an establishment that showcases its terroir, and even its dough is made with local flour.
The same research on alternative dough can be found at Spiriti Gourmet, in Lecce, where they experiment with burnt wheat. Other restaurants focusing on the local area are Officine del Cibo in Sarzana, Liguria; La Pergola in Radicondoli, Tuscany; Chiere in Piacenza. But among the new places there's also lots of tradition, for instance with the veracissimapizza napoletana from Quattroquinti in Imola. On the opposite side there's the creative pizza on the peel from Mezzometro in Senigallia (and Fano), in the Marche; or the research of Friedi Schmuck at Piano B in Siracusa. And so on.
There's a magnificent fil rouge holding together this growing scenery: constant study of the ingredients used daily, the intention of gifting guests not only with slices of pizza seasoned to their liking, but with a special focus on digestible dough, on pure flour and technology, as well as on the new balance between sweet and savoury. All this using the same canvas: pizza.
In the first edition of the Guida Identità Golose, in 2008, there were only 2 pizzerias reviewed, and not because we were lazy. We've always been in favour of opening our doors to pizza Margherita and Quattro Stagioni, if properly made. The restaurants were Simone Padoan's I Tigli in Veneto and Gabriele Bonci's Pizzarium in Rome.
The following year, again in Rome, we included also Giancarlo Casa's La Gatta Mangiona and Stefano Callegari's Sforno. They're all still in our list in 2021, and they are all in excellent shape, even 14 years later. This confirms that the choice of quality they made at the time was the right one.
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