via Trionfale, 36
To call his preparations “pizzas” would be diminishing. To call him a “pizza chef” isn’t enough. Over the years Gabriele Bonci has reconstructed the Roman-style pizza to suit himself, and considering the fact that he is huge, he’s made it big and without boundaries.
The research starts with the flours used. Whether of minor cereals or wheat, all the flours used for the pizza are organic and fresh, meaning that they are live, rich in germ and fibre and strictly ground with natural stone. Thanks to a partnership with Mulino Marino, a small artisan flourmill in the heart of the Langhe district, Gabriele Bonci has patented a blend of wheat and cereals, rich in spelt, called “Pane di sempre” (Bread of all time), which he uses to create a light, delicate pizza with very big bubbles and, at the same time, a very crunchy and intense consistency.
But it’s not just the flours and an old natural mother yeast, regenerated for decades, that make Gabriele Bonci’s pizza unique. The ingredients used to enrich the bases also have something special about them. At Pizzarium, his historical venue, not far from Saint Peter’s, the pizzas are different every day, following the season, the mood and the happiness of the chef. Apart from the White Pizza, Pizza Margherita and Potato Pizza, which you’ll always find on the counter (at easily affordable prices), over 1,500 gourmet pizzas are turned out in a year: crazy, organic, abundant and full of contrasts. Amatriciana, “Culo e lampredotto”, with offal and artichokes, with langoustines, with foie gras, burnt tomato, broccoli tops, honey, beef heart tomatoes, onion and tomato, cow’s milk mozzarella, Cantabrico anchovies and raw chicory, with Cotechino made by Eugenio Barbieri and Mojito of Roman courgettes (crushed raw with mint and agricultural rum).
In the 30 square metres (without seating) of Pizzarium where, on busy days, you might have to queue for 20 minutes to get a much-desired slice of pizza, as well as pizza you can also enjoy excellent fried food and buy outstanding natural breads (made with rye, minor cereals or Enkir), all baked in the tiny kitchen behind the counter.
And it's only a small part of what Gabriele keeps in his mind today: thanks also to a strong partnership with pastrychef Roberta Pezzella, Bonci has also opened a bakery who bears his name, in via Trionfale. A great chef such as Pietro Leemann described the place with these words: "Panificio Bonci is an excellent place for the quality of bread, focacce, panettoni (vegan also), everything. A shop run by extraordinary people who gives every detail its perfect meaning".
antropologa, critica gastronomica, giornalista, blogger, autrice televisiva, web designer e food stylist, lavora nella comunicazione enogastronomica da oltre 10 anni. Collabora con Gambero Rosso, Corriere della Sera e Laurenzi Consulting
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The protagonists of Identità Talk - Chef's Table, the revolution on TV, at Identità Milano 2023: left to right Corrado Assenza, Franco Pepe, Dario Cecchini, Gabriele Bonci, Brian McGinn (executive producer and director of Chef's Table), Faith Willinger, Paolo Marchi and Niccolò Vecchia, who moderated the debate. All photos are by Brambilla-Serrani
Some of the speakers who will talk in the Auditorium at the 18th edition of Identità Milano, from the 28th to 30th of January
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Pizza chef Simone Padoan and blind communicator Salvatore Vaccaro, the protagonists of a formidable 'eyes closed' dinner at I Tigli in San Bonifacio (Verona) on the 6th of December