No one knows exactly how or when it happened. But someone in eighteenth century Naples took the common flatbread and topped it with a New World vegetable, the tomato. A few years later Raffaele Esposito, wanting to impress the visiting Queen of Savoy, added mozzarella and basil and an Italian icon was born.
Mark Cirillo’s Pizza Cultura tells the story of the world’s most popular dish: from its Neapolitan origins to its arrival in America; from its first appearance in Canada in the 1950s to the endless styles and varieties that have developed since.
Pizza Cultura features interviews with top Italian pizza chefs like Franco Pepe (Pepe in Grani), Enzo Coccia (La Notizia) and Gino Sorbillo (Pizzeria Sorbillo). You’ll also hear from local chefs like Rocco Agostino (Pizzeria Libretto) and Rob Gentile (Buca), and industry voices like Sam and Domenic Primucci (Pizza Nova), Elena Mammoliti (Terroni), Ettore Pugliese (Vesuvio’s) and Giustino Iorio (Viva Napoli).
Photographed by one of Toronto’s leading food photographers, Rick O’Brien, the book features images from Toronto’s top pizzerias, plus a wealth of archive photos from Italy, Canada and US.
Other highlights of the book include an interview with Naples’ most famous oven maker, Stefano Ferrara; tips for pizza and wine pairings; and original recipes by Emiko Davies, Massimo Bruno, Luciano Schipano, Gaia Massai and Michelle Capobianco.
How to get the book
To sample a free PDF version of the Pizza Cultura click here. Hard copies can be purchased in Toronto bookstores like Type and Book City; select food retailers like Grande Cheese (5 locations in Vaughan, Toronto and Richmond Hill); and online from Amazon or Chapters.
Select Photographs from the Book
Two Short Films About Pizza – by Chris Monette