December 6, 2012

N.A.P. - Neapolitan Authentic Pizza – Barcelona, Spain

Recently, one third of the Stamford Pizza Tour found itself halfway across the world in the company of two seasoned guest judges and an enthusiastic newbie in search of a pizza to put through the wringer.


As luck would have it, two of the aforementioned guest judges had already logged quite a bit of time on the Barcelona food beat (going so far as to embark on their own, website-less, scorecard-less bravas tour, no less) and were able to point the Tour in the direction of Neapolitan Authentic Pizza, or N.A.P.


Establishment. As is the case with many restaurants in big cities, this place is tiny and the parking is horrendous (to give you an idea, it was a good 3300 mile hike from the car). The most striking thing about this particular locale is its simplicity: the restaurant is clean, the seating is comfortable, and the service is quick. That’s it and that’s all. The menu highlights little other than pizza (check those prices, no complaints here!), offering minimal salad and antipasto options as complements to the eponymous star of the show.


Pizza. Our pies of choice were a classic marinara (tomate, ajo, aceite de oliva, oregano, albahaca—translate it yourselves, kids, this is a cultured blog), a similarly classic Regina (cherry tomatoes, mozzarella de bufala, aceite de oliva, albahaca, parmesano), and a meat-laden heart-stopper that I can’t seem to find on the menu because I think it was a special.


To say the least, these pizzas are all fantastic. Now, it might be the wine talking (for €11, how could we not throw back a bottle…or two) but this pie could really stand up to the best of them. On top of a light and airy, yet perfectly charred crust, this pizza combines some of the best quality ingredients we’ve ever tasted on a pie including rich, delicious cheeses and fresh, house-grown herbs.


The sauce was very light and subtle—both in quantity and taste—which tends to fall into the background, especially up against the richness of a true to form buffalo mozzarella and the phenomenal showcase of Spain’s finest cured meats that you see above. The meat-topped pie also begins to reveal some minor textural shortcomings, overwhelming a delicate pie with an inherent heft and saltiness that throws off the overall balance a bit. That said, each pie had incredible merits and for what it’s worth, this is all we left behind:


Bottom line. If you’re in Barcelona and have somehow stumbled upon the Stamford Pizza Tour, go to N.A.P. and you’ll be happy you found us. Then drop us a postcard or something and let us know how you found us.

Establishment: 22/30
Pizza: 25/30
Hits the Spot: 9.3/10 
Large cheese: €5.50 (355 mm) [$7.20 (14")]

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