SquareMeal Review of
L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele Stoke Newington
This unassuming-looking pizzeria has generated a fuss that few can match, thanks to its parent: a venerable Neapolitan restaurant lauded in the book and film Eat, Pray, Love. Stoke Newington provides the venue for the third outpost of ‘the best pizzeria in Naples’ (according to quite a few Neapolitans) and nothing distracts from its wood-fired sourdough gems. The menu lists just two pizzas – margherita and marinara, in two sizes – produced by a chirpy brigade of chefs at the back of this simple, brick-and-white dining room. There are no starters, sides or even condiments, but we weren’t disappointed. The pizzas arrive with slightly sloppy toppings and a chewy-yet-moist, charred crust; we recommend the double mozzarella, a bella blend of tomato tang and fior di latte milkiness. To drink, choose Birra Moretti beers or one of a handful of Italian wines (including a Melizie dessert wine to match the ready-made, cream-filled puddings). Sadly, service began to fall apart on our visit, perhaps unsurprisingly given the pressure from the growing queue. As ever with no-reservations restaurants, arrive early (or simply order a takeaway); with luck, the restaurant’s queuing app is now up and running, eliminating the need to line up. Is this the best pizza in London? Given the fierce competition we hesitate to make such a sweeping statement, but there’s no doubt da Michele’s contenders are superb, and a bargain. The only drawback is all that fuss.