A pizza can be a simple creation: dough, tomato sauce, cheese and toppings. But for the owner of Famoso Pizzeria, getting the authentic Neapolitan texture is an art form.
"The final product is crispy but it's soft at the same time. It's almost like a cookie where it's crispy but chewy," says Justin Lussier, co-owner and CEO of Famoso Pizzeria.
Lussier was first introduced to Neapolitan pizza eight years ago on a trip to Naples, Italy with his wife.
He fell in love with the taste and started thinking about how he can bring the authentic pizza back home to Edmonton.
A quick call on a pay phone to his buddies — now his business partners — back home and the business plan was official.
But creating the Neapolitan specialty wasn't easy.
"We wanted to do it exactly how they do it in Naples," says Lussier.
He and his partners spent a week at a pizza school called Verace Pizza Napoletana, which means, "true Neapolitan pizza." To qualify, as VPN-certified, a pizzeria has to agree to make its pies with certain types of ingredients imported from Naples, use a fire-domed oven at 900'F, and adhere to traditional pizza-making methods.
Two years after his trip to Naples, the first Famoso Neapolitan Pizzeria opened for business. Famoso claims to be one of the first pizzerias in Edmonton to serve authentic Neapolitan.
Today, the owners have taken the Famoso franchise across Canada. There are currently 22 franchises from Alberta, British Columbia and Ontario. Lussier has plans to open restaurants in the U.S. by 2015.