From good old pepperoni and decadent smoked salmon to experimental Makhmali paneer pie, this list has got you covered
From good old pepperoni and decadent smoked salmon to experimental M akhmali paneer pie, this list has got you covered
How would you like to have a pizza party at work? Lola’s Pizzeria now has an outdoor oven that they set up at offices, helping employees take their mind off work, presentations, strategies, and instead discuss if they want a Bufalina or Capricciosa. Oh, it can also be customised, just in case deadlines make you more creative.
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For Swetha Reddy, executive director-Ceebros Hotels, as a child, Fridays were pizza days at home. That, to her, became comfort food. So, during the lockdown in October 2020, Swetha decided to get fresh thin crust pizzas made and delivered, utilising the pizza oven at the family-owned hotel, The Raintree, Anna Salai. “It was also a way to keep our staff occupied and motivated during that dull period,” she says.
And thus Lola’s was born one night, after an intense discussion with the whole family. “From ideation to execution, we were up and running in 12 days,” she says adding that the the pizzeria — independent of The Raintree Hotel — is led by Chef Litwin Sanjith, Suresh Anthony and Amit Joy.
“Margarita, Marco Polo, Estiva, Pollo Indinella, San Daniele are the popular ones on the menu. We also do vegan cheese pizzas but that is still a niche market,” she says. Ingredients such as cheese, arugula, rocket and spinach are sourced from artisanal farms in Auroville. “We always use buffalo mozzarella,” she adds emphasising on the importance of the quality of ingredients.
Lola’s now has two new stone ovens that share the load, at a new location on 187, St Mary’s Road. Call: 8925353555
On the bustling Khader Nawaz Khan Road, a chef from Croatia is quietly but steadily dishing out numerous servings of Italian pizza. Ferrara Pizzeria is yet another pandemic baby, that was rolled out in 2021. “We make fermented dough pizzas,” says Asim Shah who owns the charming green and white space with a checkerboard floor and four tables. He says he will soon be adding more seating to accommodate the increase in diners.
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Ferrara also delivers, and is currently whipping up around 40 pizzas during weekdays and 60 on weekends. The current project is a result of experiments that the team undertook during the lockdown. “We were trying to make Turkish pide. We thought, if we can make them boat-shaped then we can make them round as well,” he says.
The menu is compact, with 12 pizzas, but Ferrarra is big on add-ons. “Guests can choose from truffle oil, burrata, lamb keema, shrimp, barbecue chicken…” he lists out. Some of the cheeses are made in-house, such as the mozzarella. In the next couple of weeks, vegan cheese will be introduced. Diavolo, Smok’d Chicken and Farmers are the current hot favourites here.
Ferrara Pizzeria, 10, Shyam Garden, Khader Nawaz Khan Road, Nungambakkam. Call: 7448542777
La Pizza Loca
In 2019, on a visit to New York, Neha Gupta fell in love with the pizzas she tried there. So much so, that she decided to start serving the New York style of pizza in Chennai. In January 2020, she flew back to the Big Apple and trained under pizza instructor Richard Bennett for a month, before returning to India in March, and practising for two years. She made thousands of pies and sent them over to her friends for tasting. And now Neha is delighted with her three-week-old cloud kitchen La Pizza Loca. Richard, fondly known as Ricky Ji in Chennai, helped set it up and keeps visiting.
La Pizza Loca
“I trained in the science of dough,” she says, adding, “Even after using the same measurements of ingredients. the dough changes according to the temperature. I have to make my dough at a particular temperature everyday.”
Neha likes to call her pizzas “pies.” “Our classic New York pie crust is hand-tossed, thick and crisp around the edges, and thin and soft under the toppings. You get the fresh taste of sauce made from San Marzano tomatoes,” she says. The bestsellers here include Pizza Margarita, Ricky’s cheese pie, Butter Chicken pie, Chicken Explosion, and the White Pies blanketed in white sauce, cheese, toppings and a secret ingredient.
La Pizza Loca can be ordered via its Instagram page, @lapizzalocachennai.