We went here today after reading about Tony and his approach to pizza. Their tagline is "respect the craft" and they live up to it in every way. By far the best pizza I've had in the area. He makes three categories of pizza (with various toppings for each), Neopolitan style cooked in a 900 degree oven, Italian style cooked in a domed brick oven, and American style cooked in a flat bottom New York style pizza oven. He also prepares different doughs for each using a variety of flours, from which he creates his own blends. He also uses a lot of high-quality imported ingredients from Italy, san marzanos, cheeses, flours, etc. We ordered a Neopolitan Margarita and an Italian "Cal-Ital" pizza. They were both fantastic. Margarita has great fresh flavors with the right amount of char and chew. Cal-Ital had a base flavor of gorgonzola with prociutto di parma, fig jam, balsamic vinegar and parmesan cheese; the flavors were perfectly balanced and again the crust had a perfect texture and a little more flavor than the other pie. If you sit in the back room you can watch Tony work one of the ovens and it's like watching a sculptor the way we moves each pie around the oven, sometimes holding it near the flame, sometimes lifting it up to the top of the oven, sometimes just spinning it around and letting it do it's thing. You realize you're watching a master craftsman at work, and you can taste it in the pies.
The place is in a great location off of Washington Square park. It's a casual restaurant with a modern feel. They have a full bar in the front room and additional seating in back where you can see one of the ovens and watch or catch Tony at his station. Tony is a very nice guy and was happy to answer all of our questions about flour types and pizza cooking. Also, the servers were all on the ball and professional. They get very busy at night, but we went around 4pm and walked right in. So go early or expect an hour wait or more, I don't think they take reservations.
If you like pizza, put this place on your must visit list.
There is a lot of good info on Tony on the web and info about his pizza cooking school, but it doesn't look like they have a web presence for the restaurant yet. internationalschoolofpizza.com
Tony's Pizza Napoletana
1570 Stockton St, San Francisco, CA 94133
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