Pizza in a baking tin arrives in Milan: Pizzottella...

The successful Mercuro-Ranucci duo presents pizza al taglio in Milan, in delicious combinations

by Luciana Squadrilli
Pizzottella’s Doppia Mortazza

Pizzottella’s Doppia Mortazza

In the geography of Italian pizza – which once had strict, almost impossible-to-cross boundaries and whose frontiers are now much more open – pizza al taglio, usually baked in a baking tin or using a peel, and sold according to weight, not to slice, is mostly a tradition of Lazio and the surroundings, its capital being Rome. Here, in its street food version, it’s the pizza par excellence, for breakfast, a snack, lunch, later replaced by the round one for dinner. Roman pizza in a baking tin, however, is now available in Milan as well, with some excellent new places joining a few pioneers – like Pandemonium, in Via Augusto Anfossi, 19 – thus breaking the Milanese monopoly of Spontini and their slices.

Jacopo Mercuro and David Ranucci

Jacopo Mercuro and David Ranucci

The person bringing the real Roman tradition, in spirit as well as in terms of the sauces added to the crispy, light and truly delicious dough, is young Jacopo Mercuro. Before standing out together with Mirko Rizzo with his round, thin and crunchy Roman pizza, with a new take served at 180g in Rome, he left a legal career to work with pizza al taglioat Mani in Pasta. He was called by David Ranucci, a successful restaurateur in Via Muratori, a short walk from Porta Romana (and later in the US), who has built a small culinary empire based on the cuisine of Lazio, with Giulio Pane e Ojo, Casa Tua e Abbottega.

But pizza was missing, and of course it had to be the Roman one par excellence, in the baking tin, which is now available at Pizzottella: the restaurant is small and cute, with a nice counter and pretty décor (even in the basement) where you can have lunch or dinner and taste some delicious pizza, sold in 15x15cm square slices for the price of 3.90 or 4.90 euro depending on the topping. Order from the counter, and then the waiters will serve the pizza to be eaten strictly using your hands. Jacopo has fine-tuned the pizza, which is baked daily by his collaborator Vittorio Giuliani. Regulars include some great Roman classics, such as carbonara, cacio e pepe, gricia, amatriciana, the excellent doppia mortazza, plus seasonal recipes such as the one with onion, friggitelli peppers, potatoes and smoked paprika. (LS)

Via Lodovico Muratori 8, Milan
Tel. +39 02 49534230

Translated into English by Slawka Scarso