Luca Pezzetta: from playing with dough, as a child, to his delicious seafood pizzas

Spoiler from the masterclass at the digital congress of the talent of Osteria di Birra del Borgo, in Rome: how he became a pizza chef, how he makes his records ... And how they are so good

13-01-2021
Luca Pezzetta at Identità on the road. Paolo M

Luca Pezzetta at Identità on the road. Paolo Marchi met him at his Osteria di Birra del Borgo in Rome. REGISTER AT IDENTITÀ ON THE ROAD BY CLICKING HERE. For info iscrizioni@identitagolose.it or call +39 02 48011841 ext 2215

Of course, the child who played with balls of pizza dough – his grandfather would give him some, to keep him calm – now 31 (born in 1989) had to become one of the most interesting young pizzaioli in Italy. The story of Luca Pezzetta is characterised by two special places, all close to one another. From one side, the Castelli Romani, with Grottaferrata and Marino. Luca was born in Marino while in Grottaferrata his family, on his father's side, ran a traditional trattoria called Da Pezzetta. Pezzetta thus grew up among the aromas of the kitchen and of exceptional products, «local raw materials. You can find everything there: there's a farmer who supplies excellent vegetables, one that breeds pigs, a small cheese maker...».

Pezzetta interviewed by Paolo Marchi for Identità on the road

Pezzetta interviewed by Paolo Marchi for Identità on the road

Old photo of the Da Pezzetta restaurant in Grottaferrata

Old photo of the Da Pezzetta restaurant in Grottaferrata

And then there's Fiumicino, where Luca lives now: this is where his mother comes from, and when he was very young, after attending catering school and looking for a career change, he opened there a hi-fi shop. After two successful years he decided to return to the old path and dedicate his career to catering.

The third pole is Rome. Pezzetta, again back in Marino where he worked in his relatives' trattoria, was noticed by Bonci: «We were making pizzas too. Simple, traditional, and Gabriele was a regular client. One day he called me to a side: "Why don't you come and acquire some new experience at my place? You already make excellent pizza, but it could come useful». Said and done, «It offered me some incredible prospects. I learnt about fermentation, yeast, flour. I learnt methods and techniques which, once back at the family restaurant, I applied and presented to our clients, with a new format – pizza served in the baking tin, in the middle of the table, but also pizza in the pan, and on the peel – for a traditional restaurant, where the strongpoint were coda alla vaccinara and pasta».

Pizza with sea urchin yogurt, baby spinach, red prawns and white truffle

Pizza with sea urchin yogurt, baby spinach, red prawns and white truffle

Soon Rome knocked on his door again. «One day, the owner of Birra del Borgo dined at our place, "we're opening a place in town, why don't you come work with us?". I accepted, my parents gave me carte blanche. They were sad because I was leaving the family restaurant, but they also understood that it was an important step for my future».

Tonno e cipolle

Tonno e cipolle

And so it was, indeed. At Osteria di Birra del Borgo Pezzetta has grown a lot: «The closeness with the world of beers opened new roads for me that I could not imagine. I created and then strengthened my own identity; I draw from the techniques used to make beer and apply them to bread making. All our yeast – we have six varieties, each dedicated to a specific dough – start from different beer fermentation processes; they're all handled in different ways, to obtain special textures and aromas». In other words, «I joined two worlds, drawing the best from each, or at least that's what I hope. All this process caused a great evolution in my style»...


Sections

IG2020 on the road