Milan Best Pizza Places: Top Picks for 2024 - MilanoExplorer (2024)

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Milan, a city synonymous with fashion and design, also harbors a rich tradition of culinary excellence, especially when it comes to pizza. From the wafting aromas of perfectly baked dough to the sight of melted cheese and fresh toppings, pizza in Milan is an art form with as much passion put into each pie as any other Italian masterpiece. We find pizzerias dotting every corner, from chic eateries to humble establishments, each promising a unique slice of this beloved dish.

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Exploring Milan’s pizzerias is like taking a gastronomic tour through the various styles and historical influences that have shaped Italian pizza. Whether you’re craving the classic Neapolitan delicacy or the crispy thinness of a Roman style pizza, the city offers an array of choices. Some places like Gino Sorbillo Lievito Madre pride themselves on their time-honored techniques and locally sourced ingredients, ensuring every bite is an homage to tradition.

Milan Best Pizza Places

Key Takeaways

  • Milan’s pizzerias showcase the city’s culinary prestige through diverse pizza styles and flavors.
  • Artisanal techniques and quality ingredients are at the heart of Milan’s best pizza places.
  • The city offers a slice for every palate, whether you prefer a classic Neapolitan pie or a crispy thin-crust variant.

History of Pizza

We will explore the birth and legacy of one of the world’s most beloved foods – pizza.

Origins in Italy

Pizza, in its most basic form, “flatbread,” has a history that can be traced back to Italy. The concept of topping bread with ingredients was not unique to the Italians, but it was here, in the vibrant towns and bustling streets, where the dish began to take on the form we recognize today. It is widely acknowledged that Naples, situated in Italy’s south, played a crucial role in the development of pizza.

The marinara pizza, which featured simple ingredients like garlic, oregano, San Marzano tomatoes, and olive oil, was a staple for fishermen upon returning from the Bay of Naples. This particular style set the foundations for what would evolve into a rich tradition of pizza-making in the region.

Neapolitan Heritage

The history of Neapolitan pizza is fundamental in understanding not just pizza’s heritage but also Naples’ cultural importance. The 18th and early 19th centuries saw Naples flourish with a pizza style that showcased local ingredients like San Marzano tomatoes, native to the volcanic plains to the south of Mount Vesuvius, and mozzarella from the rich milk of water buffaloes in Campania.

Amongst the most recognized Neapolitan pizzas, the margherita holds a special place. Boasting toppings of mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil to represent the Italian flag, it’s said to have been named after Queen Margherita of Savoy. This pizza not only cemented the importance of using high-quality, local ingredients but also set the standard for Neapolitan pizza as a culinary masterpiece.

Pizza Styles and Variations

In Milan, we witness a beautiful diversity of pizza styles, from the classic Neapolitan style to innovative gourmet pizzas, each offering a unique experience.

From Thin Crust to Deep Dish

When we explore Milan’s pizza scene, we find that thin crust pizzas reign supreme. These pizzas are known for their crispy texture and light base, allowing the toppings to truly shine. One must-try variation is the traditional Neapolitan style pizza, characterized by a soft, chewy crust created from a special sourdough-like base.

For those who favor a thicker, more substantial bite, deep dish pizzas provide a hearty alternative. These pizzas, with their rich layers of toppings and cheese, are akin to a savory pie and offer a robust flavor profile.

Local Twists on Pizza

Milanese pizzaiolos are not afraid to experiment with local ingredients, giving birth to unique gourmet pizzas that can often be found in upscale eateries. These pizzas often incorporate high-quality, fresh produce, along with fine meats and cheeses.

Speciality variations like pizza alla pala have a footprint in Milan as well. This style is served on a wooden paddle and is distinguished by its long, oval shape. It presents a delightful, airy texture and is perfect for sharing. Additionally, accommodating dietary preferences, vegan pizza options are readily available, featuring plant-based cheeses and a variety of vegetable toppings.

Moreover, for pizza enthusiasts seeking a lighter option, sourdough pizza bases offer a tangy flavor and digestible crust, all while maintaining the integrity of the classic pizza experience.

Ingredients and Flavors

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In Milan, the art of pizza making champions both traditional and innovative approaches, focusing keenly on the quality of ingredients and the prowess of exploring toppings and sauces.

Quality of Ingredients

We understand that the best pizza hinges on the quality of its components. Pizzerias in Milan, such as Starita, place immense importance on sourcing high-quality, often seasonal ingredients. A quintessential Margherita, for instance, is not merely a matter of dough and toppings; it is the synergy of fresh mozzarella, vibrant tomato sauce, and aromatic basil. This blend transforms a simple dish into an exemplar of Milanese culinary craft.

Exploring Toppings and Sauces

We are always eager to experiment with flavors while staying genuine to the heart of Milan’s pizza identity. The artisans of Milan’s best pizza venues delight in offering a range of toppings from the classic Margherita to the eyebrow-raising ‘nduja. Reflective of local tastes, options like salsiccia e friarielli showcase the intersection of customary Milanese preferences with the broader Italian love for variety. Whether it’s the lush melt of mozzarella over a well-charred crust or the hint of spice in a tomato sauce, every element matters.

Pizza in Popular Culture

Pizza isn’t just a delicious dish; it’s an icon that has permeated various forms of media, becoming a cultural staple both on-screen and off.

Pizza in Film and Television

We’ve seen pizza make grand appearances in countless films and television shows, emphasizing its impact on pop culture. For instance, in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise, the heroes’ love for pizza is almost as famous as their martial arts skills, symbolizing camaraderie and comfort. These heroes from the sewers have influenced many pizza lovers to grab a slice during their action-packed adventures. Furthermore, the famous ‘I’ll have what she’s having’ scene from When Harry Met Sally takes place in a pizzeria, showcasing pizza as a backdrop to iconic moments.

Pizza as a Cultural Symbol

In cultural discussions, pizza often represents a simple pleasure that unites people, transcending age, and background. It’s an emblem of Italian heritage that cities like Rome have shared with the world, allowing it to evolve with regional toppings and styles to suit local tastes. Our collective love for pizza has turned it into a symbol of food culture and community, resonating with anyone who’s enjoyed a slice among friends or used it as comfort food in a new city.

The Pizza Making Process

In Milan, pizza crafting is an art that blends tradition with culinary precision. We focus on dough quality and baking techniques that are paramount to creating an authentic Milanese pizza.

Art of Dough and Fermentation

Making exceptional pizza begins with the dough, a fundamental component that can make or break the experience. In Milan, lievito madre al duomo is the heart of dough creation, providing a natural yeast that helps in achieving the perfect rise and flavor profile. By allowing the dough to ferment slowly, often for over 24 hours, we ensure the development of a soft and digestible crust, forming the ideal base for slow food ingredients to shine upon.

Baking Techniques

The baking technique is crucial in transforming a good pizza into a great one. The use of a wood-fired oven is traditional in Milanese pizzerias like Giolina and Marghe Pizza, and it provides a distinct char and flavor that can’t be duplicated in standard ovens. Each pizza is baked quickly at high temperatures, which crisps the outer cornicione (the puffy rim of the pizza) while keeping the center moist and flavorful. For example, places like Piccola Ischia champion this technique, creating a harmonious balance between a crunchy exterior and a tender crumb.

Pizza and Health

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When we talk about enjoying the best pizza in Milan, it’s important to consider how this indulgence fits into a healthy lifestyle. Let’s explore the nutritional aspects of pizza and how we can enjoy it responsibly.

Nutritional Considerations

Pizza, at its essence, can be nutritious, providing essential nutrients like carbohydrates from the dough, vitamins and minerals from vegetable toppings, and protein from cheese and meats. However, not all pizzas are created equal. Gourmet pizza places in Milan often prioritize slow food ingredients and seasonal ingredients, potentially enhancing the nutritional value. For example, a pizza that uses fresh, seasonal vegetables offers a richer array of vitamins compared to non-seasonal or heavily processed toppings.

On the other hand, vegan pizza options have become increasingly popular, which exclude animal products, opting instead for plant-based cheese and other toppings. These alternatives often reduce the pizza’s saturated fat content and increase its dietary fiber, conducive to heart health.

Balance and Moderation

Moderation is key in a balanced diet. Even the most health-conscious pizzeria will serve a pizza that is dense in calories and potentially high in sodium, depending on the toppings and cheese used. Therefore, we must balance our pizza consumption with other nutritious foods and physical activity.

Indulging in a pizza from time to time is a pleasurable experience that can fit into a healthy diet, especially when we choose pizzas rich with vegetables, lean proteins, and whole-grain crusts. Always aim to balance your plate with a colorful array of foods to ensure you’re meeting your body’s nutritional needs.

Pizzerias and Restaurants

In Milan, the art of pizza making reaches new heights, with a myriad of establishments where the craft is honed to perfection. We’ll venture into the alleys of famous pizzerias that have earned recognition far beyond Italy and explore the unique experience each pizzeria offers.

Famous Pizzerias in Italy and Beyond

Gino Sorbillo is not just a household name in Milan; its fame extends beyond Italian borders, bringing the authentic Neapolitan style pizza to the forefront of the global culinary scene. As one of the most acclaimed spots, it’s a testament to the city’s dedication to pizza excellence. Meanwhile, the rise of Berberè can be attributed to their commitment to high-quality, organic ingredients and a contemporary twist on traditional recipes.

Pizzium has built a reputation by revisiting traditional recipes from various Italian regions, creating a taste tour without leaving the city. Another notable name is Da Zero, located in Milan yet transporting its patrons to the heartland of Cilento with its signature dough and craftsmanship.

Exploring the Pizzeria Experience

The concept of Lievi-tà stands out among Milan’s pizzerias, advocating for a longer fermentation process of the dough, resulting in a distinctively light and airy crust. Similarly, Assaje provides an immersive encounter with pizza, focusing not only on taste but also on an engaging atmosphere.

Cocciuto, renowned not only for its rustic, irresistible pizzas but also for its vibrant vibe, expertly balances the authentic with the modern. In contrast, Dry offers a unique pairing of pizza with an extraordinary selection of co*cktails, pushing the boundaries of the traditional pizzeria experience.

When indulging in a slice at Teo, one can expect a symphony of flavors, often including the creamy richness of potatoes as a topping. Crosta elevates the scene with unique offerings like the delectable Cosacca and Giolina adds another layer of gourmet appeal with their curated selection.

For those in search of variety, Piccola Ischia provides an extensive menu, ensuring that every pizza enthusiast finds their preferred slice. Milan’s pizzerias, such as the innovative Potato, continuously redefine the pizza scene, integrating creativity with time-honored methods.

Pairing Pizza

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When we explore Milan’s renowned culinary scene, the experience can be enhanced by pairing our pizza with the perfect beverage. From classic wines to innovative co*cktails, we have some specific combinations that truly elevate our pizza dining experience.

Wine and Pizza

The fundamental rule is to balance the flavors. A pizza with mozzarella and tomato pairs delightfully with a light red wine. We might opt for a Chianti, known for its fruity notes and ability to complement the rich cheese. For pizzas topped with heartier meats, a full-bodied red such as a Barolo could be a more suitable match. On the other hand, a white pizza, especially one with seafood, calls for a crisp white wine like a Pinot Grigio. The acidity in the wine cuts through the creaminess, creating a harmonious taste sensation.

co*cktails and Gourmet Pizzas

Stepping into the world of co*cktails, our choices become more eclectic. Consider a dry Milano co*cktail to pair with gourmet pizzas adorned with sophisticated toppings. The herbal and slightly bitter notes of this co*cktail can beautifully cut through the richness of cheeses like mozzarella, while the effervescence refreshes our palate between bites. For a smoky pizza, perhaps one with barbecue sauce or smoked meats, we could serve a co*cktail with a bourbon base to complement the deep, robust flavors.

Conclusion

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In our quest for the finest pizza experiences in Milan, we’ve discovered a city teeming with culinary prowess. We’ve savored Neapolitan-style pizzas with their delightfully soft and well-fermented dough, revealing how traditional techniques continue to stand the test of time. The pizzerias in Navigli and Porta Romana have showcased not only their mastery in pizza making but also the versatility of the Milanese dining scene.

For those with a penchant for exquisite toppings, the touch of sweet and salty prosciutto at Luna Rossa presents a tantalizing option. Meanwhile, the renowned Gino Sorbillo offers an experience not just in flavor but in Milan’s pizza culture itself.

We take pride in guiding you to venues spotlighted by local food aficionados and culinary websites, ensuring an authentic and memorable pizza experience. Whether you crave the crispiness of a deep-fried pizza or the classic meltiness of mozzarella on a traditional bake, Milan caters to every preference.

Our exploration reaffirms Milan’s status as a haven for pizza lovers. Every restaurant mentioned has earned its reputation through a blend of high-quality ingredients, culinary craftsmanship, and a unique touch that distinguishes it from the rest. So, the next time you find yourself in Milan, remember that the best slice is waiting for you, steeped in Italian tradition and baked to perfection.

Frequently Asked Questions

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As aficionados of Milano’s vibrant culinary scene, we are frequently asked about the premier destinations to savor authentic pizza in this fashion capital. Below, we address the top inquiries with confidence, drawing from our comprehensive grasp of the city’s gastronomic offerings.

Where can I find the best pizza near the Milan Duomo?

In the shadow of the iconic Milan Duomo, Pizzeria Gino Sorbillo Lievito Madre stands out as a beacon for pizza connoisseurs, renowned for their mastery in crafting sumptuous Neapolitan pies. Their authentic approach has garnered acclaim, making it a can’t-miss stop.

What are the top pizza restaurants in Milano Centrale area?

Near Milano Centrale, adventurous palates should seek out Starita. Positioned closely to this transport hub, Starita serves up pizza that consistently receives rave reviews, solidifying its status within the city’s competitive pizza landscape.

Which restaurants offer the best pizza and pasta combination in Milan?

When the craving for both pizza and pasta strikes, head to locales that excel in dual offerings, such as Cocciuto. This establishment delights with its perfectly fermented dough and a pasta selection that marries traditional techniques with modern flair.

Can you recommend popular pizza spots in the Isola district of Milan?

The Isola district, revered for its chic atmosphere, is home to pizzerias like I Dodici Gatti Pizza & Grill. This gem provides a wood-fired oven experience with a panoramic view, offering a pizza indulgence that is as much a feast for the eyes as it is for the palate.

What pizza place in Milan is frequently recommended by locals on Reddit?

Discussions among Milan’s Reddit community often highlight the celebrated Pizzeria Meucci, especially for those seeking the guidance of local gourmands. This pizzeria garners frequent recommendations for its scrumptious slices that resonate with Milanese authenticity.

In terms of gastronomy, what unique food experiences does Milan offer besides pizza?

Milan’s gastronomy extends beyond its pizza prowess. The city takes pride in its Milanese risotto, a creamy, saffron-infused delight, and the traditional cotoletta alla Milanese, a crispy breaded veal cutlet that is as satisfying as any pizza from the city’s best pizzerias.

Milan Best Pizza Places: Top Picks for 2024 - MilanoExplorer (2024)
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