Pizza Pilgrims |Start the Pilgrimage across Italy at Reggio Calabria

1. Reggio di Calabria

The start of the adventure

Where it all began, we collect the Ape van and discover the raw power of its 219cc engine.

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A firm handshake for the man who sold us our trusty Ape van.
The first pizza of our Pilgrimage - a RyanAir special!
We have Ape Key. The Pilgrimage is on!
Conchetta - our Ape Van - in all her glory.
Leave the gun, take the Cannoli.

2. Spilinga


Up in the Calabrian hills - we first taste Nduja spicy sausage, the pizza ingredient of kings.

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"Bet you couldn't fit a whole Nduja in your mouth..."
"Lookin' back, on the track, for a little green bag..."
If only this photo was bigger - you could see the Nduja Thom is holding

3. Scalea

Red chilis

A spicy day with Guiseppe, learning everything there is to know about pepperoncino

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That's your classic box of chilis that is.
Calabria are very proud of their chili
Deadly serious.
Handle with care.
A chili panorama.
A photo of a photo of Thom trying a chili
Calabrian sunset over the Ape

4. Sarno


Tasting the famous San Marzano tomatoes of the Vesuvian foothills - and meeting our pizza guru Antonino Esposito.

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San Marzano close up.
Recycling your Coke bottles.
One massive ball of Mozzarella.
More tomato close ups...
The man, the legend - Antonino Esposito.
Burn baby burn.
Pizza lessons with Antonino
Wizard - you shall not pass!
Antonio's Neapolitan pizza
Finally we get to taste.
Moody shot of the bay of Naples

5. Capri


Limoncello on the beautiful island of Capri - if only it would ever stop raining…

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Limoncello shopping.
Nice and sunny in Capri
These guys totally get it
That's one big lemon.
The grove of dreams.

6. Naples

Neapolitan Pizza

This is it - the home of pizza. The first of many pilgrimages to the crazy, brilliant world of Naples.

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The Ape finally makes it to Naples
Da Michele menu - simplicity itself
Napoli Pizza School
Molino Caputo - where all great pizza starts its life
The Caputo flour laboratory
Thom standing at the pizza station in Da Michele.
Luigi - the man at the forefront of Da Michele
Backstreets of Naples
Learning to make Pizza Fritta in the Naples backstreets
Pizza Fritta!
The 5 star pizza
Rum Baba - as far as the eye can see!
The Spanish Quarter in Naples
Subtle Italian advertising
The pizza box now on display in Kingly Court
The seal of approval you are after.
Arty scooter shot.
Waiting to go into Da Michele.
Thom and James with Team Da Michele!

7. Caserta


Buffalo Mozzarella - starting with the buffalo themselves. We still import all our mozzeralla from Caserta.

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Getting in with the water buffalo
Baby Buffalo. Cute!
Conchetta - the legend we named our van after!
Making Buffalo Mozzarella
The finished artilcle.
Buffalo Mozzarella balls soaking in brine
A pizza, made entirely out of Mozzarella!
The queen of Mozzarella - Rosanna Marziale
The Buffalo farmer

8. Gaeta

Tiella Pizza Pie

The Italian version of a kebab! Pizza pie in the truest sense of the world, we are introduced to the Tiella.

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Parked outside the Tiella shop
Floury clap
Share and share alike...
The Italian version of a kebab shop!
A tiella pizza pie
Amateur photography...
Our first Tiella signed and delivered...

9. Rome

Roman Pizza

Thinner, crispier - the Romans have their own spin on what a pizza is all about…

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Perfectly fitting T Shirts
A quiet night out in Roma
Pizza Al Taglio - the Pizzarium is a must try in Rome.
Pizzeria Montecarlo in Roma
Early branding work
With the pizza chef
James getting stuck in.
We found the Irish pub!

10. Montepulciano


Wine cellars in the hills - Montepulciano is a hilltop Tuscan dreamzone.

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Bitesized Ape.
Red wine - straight from the source.
The Ape in Montepulciano
Classic gag that one...
Not too shabby a view
The wine cellars

11. Pontedera

Piaggio Ape

The birthplace of our beloved van Concetta - we see the Piaggio factory in all its glory.

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With Tommaso - the man who helped us get on the road
Waiting for my chauffeur
The first ever Ape!
An Ape fire engine
Sleek Italian can design
The original!
Conchetta close up

12. Pisa

Olive Oil

Another Italian stalwart - fresh pressed Olive Oil is a total incredible experience (and makes you cough).

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Dinner is served
All this pilgrimaging is hard work.
Understanding Biodynamic production - it is complicated stuff
The olive oil farmer
Fresh pressed olive oil
OIlves heading off for pressing
It had to be done...
Olive picking!
Biodynamic olive oil farmer.

13. Lucca

The inspiration

We visit the cooking school where James first had the idea of putting a pizza oven in an Ape van…

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Dining Al Fresco
Gianluca - where the dream truly began.
Needs must.
On the road again...

14. Modena

Balsamic Vinegar

Balsamic vinegar is a 25 year labour of love - but tasting the real thing is an almost trancendental experience…

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Aceteria La Noce - home of Balsamic
Balsamic Vinegar barrels
The power shot
With the Team from La Once
Dolph Lundgren. Of course.

15. Reggio Emilia


One of Italy's most famous products - and one that forms a fundamental part of Neapolitan pizza.

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Maturing parmensan cheeses
All part of a balanced diet.
Parmesan after 1, 2 and 3 years of ageing
Lab coats are a must
Parmesan as far as the eye can see

16. Parma

Parma Ham

Parma ham - getting behind the science of a good cured ham (lab coats and all).

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Down the hatch...
Parma ham maturing nicely
Quick quality check - give it a prod.
A well earned beer...
More lab coats. Again - totally essential

17. Recco


It's focaccia Jim, but not as we know it…

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Making Focaccia di Recco (It was Mario's bday too!)
Finishing touches
One massive focaccia
Look at all that straccino cheese...

18. Genoa


Basil and pizza are like peas and carrots, so we head off to meet a world Basil champion, naturally…

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Basil basil everywhere.
World Pesto Champion!
About 10 pizzas worth there...
Making pesto.
Every students staple right there.

19. Turin


Living every 8 years olds dream touring a chocolate factory - and the inspiration for our Nutella ring.

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Smile - you own a chocolate shop!
Willy Wonka eat your heart out.
Living every 8 year old's dream.

Reggio di Calabria




























Reggio Emilia