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9. Naples, for pizza|
Naples might be dirty, corrupt and disorganized, but it is also the home of the food we think of as Italian -- dark, ripe tomatoes, basil, pasta, seafood, all of it fresh and bursting with flavor.
And then, then there is pizza. Neapolitans didn’t exactly invent pizza, but you could say they defined it -- they were the first to put tomatoes on it and a Neapolitan chef was the first to add Mozzarella, at Antica Pizzeria Brandi (Salita S. Anna Di Palazzo 1-2; +39 081 416 928), which still exists.
The pizza here is rustic, robust, unruly -- it is wood-fired, with puffy edges blackened from the oven, a chewy base and minimal ingredients.
As you’d expect, no one can agree on the best, but you should start with Da Michele (Via Cesare Sersale 1; +39 081 5539 204), a traditional 19th-century pizzeria which only serves two types of pizza -- Margherita and Marinara. They’re both mind-bogglingly good.