Monday, July 30, 2012

Una Pizza Napoletana

Once again, time for some more pizza! If you’re just tuning in, feel free to visit this page to see what The Great Neapolitan Pizza Quest is all about!

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I think one of the main highlights for Erik was the anticipation of going to Una Pizza Napoletana in San Francisco because of the following it has. It’s somewhat of an enigma, and yet it seems like wherever we go and mention Neapolitan pizza, people ask, did you go to Una Pizza Napoletana?

The owner, Anthony Mangieri, originally from New Jersey, opened Una sometime ago in Manhattan, developed a large following there, and then moved his business to the bay area, where he currently resides. If you’ve ever read or seen anything about Anthony, you’ll know right away this guy is serious about pizza. It seems like many people either love him or hate him, but as Erik says, he’s just a typical New Yorker who’s passionate about what he does.

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Una is famous for their limited, high priced menu based around tradition that typically baulks at any changes or substitutions. At Una Pizza Neapolitana, you will find zero salads, zero appetizers, and zero desserts. Also, if you go during the week, you will find zero pizzas with meat; something not many places can get away with, yet Anthony seems to have found his niche.

As you can see below, the menu simply has six pizzas, all $20 or higher, and drinks. That’s it.

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The d├ęcor is ultra minimalistic, simple, and revolves completely around the pizza oven and pizza itself. Besides a couple servers, Anthony is a one man show, making all the pizzas himself each day.

We actually quite like the simplicity of style and the menu. It's very to the point, and completely focused on the art of Anthony's pizza making.

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Per usual, we got the Marinara and Margherita pizzas and they were cooked in about 77 seconds.

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The Quick Stats (erik’s notes)

Oven:
Stefano Ferrara

Cook Time:
  About 77 seconds

Dough:
Una’s dough had a very big rise, crazy amounts of crust. Was denser than a cake yeast based pizza. It appears that he definitely uses a poolish.

Taste: Here’s the truth. It’s one of those things when you follow somebody for so long, you read and listen to so much about them, you form such a high expectation. To say we were let down was far from the truth, but it did not live up to what we expected, and perhaps nothing could have. The bufala was very tough, the sauce was dense in some places and very sparse in others, and it’s the first time I’ve had to salt a pizza. But how could we complain about the Godfather of Neapolitan pizza in America? Really, he has earned the right to do whatever he wants (and at $20 a pie, the right to charge whatever he wants). That being said, we couldn’t complain about our pizzas. He’s in there every day by himself doing what he loves, and doing very well at that. If we lived nearby, we would still eat there, I’m positive on a very regular basis. It was just really not what we expected, and in a league completely of its own.

Una Pizza Napoletana on Urbanspoon


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