100 Favorite Dishes: No. 10 -- Margherita Pizza at Scuola Vecchia Pizza e Vino | Clean Plate Charlie | South Florida | Broward Palm Beach New Times | The Leading Independent News Source in Broward-Palm Beach, Florida

100 Favorite Dishes

100 Favorite Dishes: No. 10 -- Margherita Pizza at Scuola Vecchia Pizza e Vino

We're counting down our top 100 favorite dishes. Click here for a full archive. If you have any nominations of your own, email them here.

10. Margherita Pizza at Scuola Vecchia Pizza e Vino
Pizza may be the stoner's meal of choice, but there are rules to this thing, man. Or, at least, there are rules about the Margherita pie and truth be told, they're kind of a bitch. Though you'll find -- and likely enjoy -- any number of "Margherita" pies throughout South Florida, almost all of those would fail to meet the rigorous rules set forth by the Associazione Pizzaiuoli Napoletani (APN), the governing body that oversees such matters.

Scuola Vecchia Pizza e Vino works closely with the APN to create pies that meet the organization's standards in everything from flour consistency to the tomato sauce used to the quality of the mozzarella. Their pies bake in a bell-shaped wood-fired oven that uses volcanic stone to cook pizzas at an intimidating 950 degrees. They're done in just a minute and a half. Keeping with tradition, the Margherita in particular must use a certain amount of sauce, fresh basil, and mozzarella in order to be worthy of being served. It's a fast-paced but precise process and the restaurant's design allows you to watch the action.

But all of this would be moot if the pizza didn't live up to that level of ceremony and rigmarole. And rest assured, from the crisp-but-not-hard crust to the housemade mozzarella to the sauce that actually taste like tomatoes, this version is entirely worth the effort.

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Tricia Woolfenden

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