Forget flying to Italy for a perfect margherita pizza – you just need to get to Brunswick, north of Melbourne, for a slice of the world’s greatest cheesy goodness.
Johnny Di Francesco, from 400 Gradi on Lygon St, Brunswick, has been crowned the master of margherita at the World Pizza Championships in Parma, Italy.
Six hundred entrants from 35 countries participated in the two-day competition last week.
The margherita had to be traditional, which meant less than 35cm in diameter, cooked in a woodfire oven and made with a handful of toppings; cheese, garlic, olive oil, salt and peeled tomatoes.
Di Francesco, who is originally from Naples in Italy, is known as “Mr Pizza”.
“A lot of people think it is easy to produce a margherita but it is one of the hardest to produce in the world,” he said.
“The balance of the ingredients and the quality are so important. With a lot of other pizzas it is easy to mask the flavour with toppings so you don’t really get the flavour out of the dough. With a margherita there is no hiding anything that isn’t right.”
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But Australia’s margharita win has shocked Americans, who have prided themselves on their pizza prowess.
Cheesed-off US website Gawker has been left wondering if they are in an age of lacklustre pizza making.
“What does this say about us, America?” they wrote.
“Is Australia taking the last slice? What sauce do we have left to stand on?”
Ha! Eat it, America.