Angelo Rumolo, from Castello to Le Grotticelle

A new beautiful home, always in Caggiano (Salerno), for one of the most talented pizza-chefs. Our tasting confirms this...

The pizza dedicated to Martina, Angelo Rumolo

The pizza dedicated to Martina, Angelo Rumolo's wife

We met him back in 2014, a young ande passionate man who presented his pizza at Identità Milano with chef Vitantonio Lombardo, his “neighbour” at the time in Caggiano, a village on the border between Campania and Basilicata, a short distance from Apulia. We then visited him at Grotto Pizzeria Castello, a small but charming place in a wing of the castle of Caggiano, run by the entire Rumolo family: his uncles and parents mostly farm the products used to season the pizza, his cousins are in the dining room and Angelo – when he’s not roaming in the mountains in search for mushrooms, truffles and wild herbs – kneads and bakes marvellous pizzas which (re)define the concept of “local pizza”. With the airy and light dough, he uses local products and ancient recipes such as zammedda, slowly cooked tomato seasoned with lots of pecorino.

Angelo Rumolo at work

Angelo Rumolo at work

Even then, all the family was at work to reach a common goal: Le Grotticelle, a nice place perched on a hill close to the centre of Caggiano, which they built themselves, brick after brick. They wanted to welcome guests with pizzas, typical food, rich farmers’ breakfasts and warm smiles (in Grotticelle, Caggiano, Salerno. Tel. +39 0975 1966171, So since a few months ago there’s no more fire in the oven at the Castello – while waiting for renovations and new developments – yet Angelo’s pizzas have a new, and beautiful, home. Conceived for banquets too – with well-designed gardens, turrets and panoramic terraces, 4 bedrooms and two annexes for overnight stay, and a cellar room that is perfect for aperitivos and private dinners – Le Grotticelle is still based on the true and genuine flavours of this borderland area, following the rhythm of the earth and the seasons.

Le Grotticelle

Le Grotticelle

On top of the extraordinary cured meat and cheese – the former come from Bioagrimar in Basilicata, the latter from Di Cecca in Apulia– there are first courses made with homemade pasta and sauces. Main courses are meat based. But the main role belongs to Angelo’s pizzasfrom the classic ones, always available in the menu – like Zammedda or Le Grotticelle with cardoncelli mushrooms, guanciale and fresh truffle – to the seasonal ones which change weekly based on the supply. For instance, while the snow is currently covering the fields and the roads, there’s leek and salted cod (the mountain fish) or the one with beans cooked in the pignata, and the one with pezzente sausage from black pigs and powdered coffee, which will warm you up during the cold winter nights.

Try the pizza dedicated to Martina, who is now Angelo’s wife: seasonal vegetables (currently: black kale, leek, broccoli, wild chicory) seasoned at the table with a strong bagna cauda, a specialty of Angelo’s mother – she’s from Piedmont – and a favourite of Martina’s.


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