On the 9th day of Christmas, I’m craving Neapolitan pizza
3 Comments Karen HamiltonDecember 18, 2011
On the ninth day of Christmas, Foodsters drove to me
Nine Napoli pizzas
Eight deep-fried winglets
Seven meat-filled ‘wiches
Six buns a-steaming
Five Memphis Feasts!
Three Peking Ducks
And a steaming bowl of chicken congee.
Razor-thin crust. Top shelf tomato. Toppings you can count on one hand. Blast from a wood-fired oven. Table accoutrements of infused olive oils – no parmesan or chili flakes in sight. That’s my idea of what pizza from Naples should be like, and that’s what you get when you dine at Nicli Antica Pizzeria: my choice for the best pizza in Vancouver.
It therefore pains me to no end that Nicli has a strict dine-in policy. It’s not easy to find a parking spot near its location in Gastown, nor is it appealing for other diners to have us come in with an incredibly vocal toddler and ruin the cool vibe going on inside–even if Nicli does provide patrons use of the coolest high chairs I’ve ever seen. If you, too, are disappointed that you cannot take a Nicli pie to go when the place is full or when you’re simply not in the mood to be out in public, chime in with a sympathetic comment here. Maybe enough voices asking for options will convince the pizzeria to reconsider.
Luckily, the pizza scene for homebodies is not entirely bereft of quality. Main Street’s Pizzeria Farina makes their fare in a similar, if less traditional, Napoli style, and their to-go service is booming.
After our failed attempted last week to get takeout from Nicli, we asked Foodsters to deliver a couple of Pizzeria Farina pizzas to our door. The $15 Funghi, pictured below, carries a more weight and topping than the minimalist magic of Nicli’s (topmost photo), but it still exceeded our expectations of a quality pizza with mushrooms. Arugula runs along the bitter and peppery, so keep that in mind if you aim to try it. The greens were a welcome addition for my husband, who loves pepper in everything; I had to cull some greens from my slices to keep the balance on the tongue.
The $14 Finocchiona was a major hit. Fennel sausage, provolone, and spicy pepper danced around in my mouth and convinced my normally miniscule appetite to make room for a second serving. It’ll be the first pizza I’ll reorder from Pizzeria Farina–the Calabrese and Pizza Speciale are next on my bucket list.
If you’re going to call Foodsters to get you some Pizzeria Farina pies, I suggest you order close to to the start of service at 5pm or give everyone a heads up for when you’ll need it. They only make so much dough on any given night, and when they run out–generally by 8:30-10pm–they close up shop. Keep tabs on their supply via Twitter or Facebook so you don’t wind up with a pizza craving that’ll have to be settled with Domino’s cardboard crust.
From December 10-22nd, I’m a media sponsor for Foodsters’ 12 Days of Christmas Food Drive. Follow along as I share what my top 12 food and restaurant cravings are this season (with some poetic license to boot).