Naples Rolls Out A Fine-Tuned Dough, And The New 'Cloud Pizza' Is Born

Bucking generations of tradition, some Neapolitan pizzaiolis are experimenting with new ideas, bolstered by a new flour that creates a charred, puffier and lighter crust. And the trend is catching on.
A handful of young upstarts are changing Naples' traditional pizza-making habits, bolstered by a new flour called Nuvola (Italian for "cloud"), developed by Italian miller Caputo. Source: Courtesy of Carlo Sammarco

What's Italian for "sheesh"?

Ever since the quasimythic birth of margherita pizza in Naples in 1889, Neapolitan pizzaioli have regarded their variety as the only true pizza, looking down upon differing styles in Brooklyn, Chatham, Chicago, Detroit, Kansas City, Melbourne, New Haven, Stockholm and Tokyo. For more than a century, they have seen anything beyond their Neapolitan borders as little more than nuanced blasphemy, the squabbling dialects of errant heretics. To them, non-Naples pies have counted as pizza about as much as Rob counts as a Kardashian.

But as Naples doubled down on tradition decade after decade, its prestige pies took on a dusty flavor amid a global, a fourth-generation Neapolitan pizzaiolo, said in Italian by way of a translator. "Tradition strengthened us but it also held us back." So Capuano did something his ancestors never did: He listened to the heretics, despite not becoming a convert. "I can learn from any pizza — even Chicago deep dish," he said. "My family and my Naples never thought that before."

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