Last Updated on April 26, 2021 by Fiona Maclean
Bringing Neapolitan pizza back home with Firezza
The clink of wine glasses and the chatter of friends reuniting is the sound of Spring 2021. Outdoor dining and picnics in the park are sprouting everywhere despite the cool weather, the relief at being allowed to eat outdoors with loved and missed ones undiminished by lack of sunshine. Sometimes we are blessed with a sunny weekend. Chefs are getting back to serving diners on their own premises rather than exclusively packing home meal kits. Yet, takeaway dining is here to stay especially when a meal can be delivered straight to your picnic. So much the better when Firezza, a chain of restaurants with branches across London, is well positioned to deliver wherever your outdoor space may be.
Invited to review a takeaway from Firezza I got my picnic gear out and was lucky that the sun shone in one of those rare cloudless blue skies. A few minutes before the requested time, the delivery man arrived bearing the tell tale boxes that announce that pizza has arrived. This is a sight bound to please most attendees in my household.
Firezza has been delivering stone baked pizza since 2001 and so has been well positioned to survive the pandemic as it offers both delivery or collection options. It has branches across London from Battersea in the south to Hampstead in the north and is also located in Tunbridge Wells, Reading and Exeter. The menu ranges across an impressive range of pizzas as well as starters, salads and desserts.
I left the menu choice to the restaurant and so opened the boxes with interest, not knowing what I would find within. First up was a clutch of breaded chicken goujons which were well spiced and we dipped them in the accompanying pot of smoked BBQ ketchup. There were two further pots of pesto and a garlic mayo with rosemary which we made good use of for dipping our second starter – slices of garlic pizza bread with mozzarella. The pesto was lovely with a punch flavour of basil and parmesan. The mayo was thick and garlicky. The sort of sauce to spread on toast – in fact I did just that in the evening with some leftover roast chicken.
A very large rectangular box intrigued me and on opening it I found half a metre’s length of slices of two types of pizza. The first was pollo picante – Cajun spiced chicken, red onions roasted red peppers and red chilli. The second was a vegetariana with red onions, roasted tomatoes and artichokes along with basil and friarielli (an Italian green leafy vegetable). This was supposedly a meal for two people but fed four of us with enough leftover to eat some cold later in the day. Many pizza lovers will report that the best slice of all is the one leftover and eaten cold later. We debated the merits of the thin base and the chewy crusts – more dipping in garlic mayo and pesto – and remain divided as many aficionados do. This is exactly the way I like my pizza and I was very happy when visiting Naples where this is how they do it. Others may disagree and prefer a thicker base and less chewiness.
Firezza serves pizza by the metre the true Neapolitan way. When the founders of Firezza visited Naples in 1999 they were so impressed with the stone baked pizza they ate that they started up a business in London.
Keeping to the Italian theme, we were sent a portion of tiramisu for dessert. It looked voluptuously creamy and tasted authentically Italian. It has a moist crumb and a terrific caffeine meets booze hit, lots of soft cream and my only wish was that we had ordered several more.
Many other options can be enjoyed. There are 21 pizza toppings – including vegan options – and if that is not enough to satisfy your needs, you can create your own pizza too. Starters include mozzarella dippers, vegan chicken balls, several varieties of chicken wings or potato wedges, as well as arancini, breadsticks and salads. To bring the meal to a sweet close you can choose from tiramisu, a slice of banoffee pie or even one of apple and frangipane. I rather fancy a tub of pistachio ice cream but several tempting flavours are on offer. There are four types of meal deal so no one need go hungry.
While we are delighted to be enjoying the freedom of eating outdoors again it might still be some time before we can enjoy a trip to Italy. In the meantime, Naples can be delivered to my door.
For delivery options across London and parts of the South East and to find out more, check out the Firezza website
If you are looking for pasta rather than pizza, we really liked Fidelari – check our review for more about their delivery kits.