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Peppe Miele, Webisode #1, True Napoletana Pizza

We’re back with a new series of webisodes featuring a fascinating conversation with Peppe Miele, the first restaurateur to open a certified Vera Pizza Napoletana pizzeria in the United States. We did this interview a couple of years ago, before he closed his beautiful cafe, Antica Pizzeria, in Marina del Rey, California, due to a massive rent increase (it wasn’t far from the LA Airport — listen carefully and you might hear the planes coming and going). I wondered whatever happened to Peppe, who was so gracious with us, sharing his knowledge of the history of pizza and the “rules” of the Associone’ Verace Napoletana, whose mission is to preserve the authentic method of the Naples style. The good news is that Peppe has since re-emerged as the culinary consultant for a hot new pizza restaurant in LA called MidiCi, which I can’t wait to try (if you’ve been there, please write a comment below and let us know what you think). Looks like this means an inevitable road trip for the Pizza Quest crew but, in the meantime, please enjoy this new segment, which officially re-launches our webisode series (and for newbies, feel free to peruse the Webisode archive to watch the dozens of videos we’ve already posted). We’ll keep sharing these new segments with you over the next weeks and months and, in the meantime, I’m going to track down Peppe and get some more updates from him, which I’ll share with you in upcoming Peter’s Blogs. So here it is, Part One of our interview with Peppe Miele, in which we explore the origins of Napoletana pizza and, in the process, manage to do some pretty serious tasting. Mangia!!



chuck koton

Peppe Miele overturned my idea of pizza when i walkred into his Antica Pizzeria almost 20 years ago…i grew up inNYC when great pizza was made in innumerable neighborhood pizzerias…he educated me about Neapolitan pizza and i was eating pizza in his restaurant nearly every weekend from then on…He has a VPN school in Marina Del Rey nowjust down the street from where Antica used to be…as for MiDiCi, its the best pizza in the San Fernando valley..its an upscale version of the pizza craze thats sweeping the country…fast pizza, a la chipotle(though ive never been in chipotle) im not thrilled with the assembly line method but Peppe and his team including Mario Vollera, whose pizzeria/wine bar,South End, should not be missed, taught them to make great pizza and put together their menu….Peppe’s the greatest!

chuck koton

im feeling very sentimental now just seeing Antica…damn, i miss it!

    Brad English

    Chuck, no kidding! I miss it as well. I have been hanging on Peppe’s every word!

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Pizza Quest is a site dedicated to the exploration of artisanship in all forms, wherever we find it, but especially through the literal and metaphorical image of pizza. As we share our own quest for the perfect pizza we invite all of you to join us and share your journeys too. We have discovered that you never know what engaging roads and side paths will reveal themselves on this quest, but we do know that there are many kindred spirits out there, passionate artisans, doing all sorts of amazing things. These are the stories we want to discover, and we invite you to jump on the proverbial bus and join us on this, our never ending pizza quest.

Peter’s Books

American Pie
Artisan Breads Every Day
The Bread Bakers Apprentice
Brother Junipers Bread Book
Crust and Crumb
Whole Grain Breads

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