The Best Chef Pizza Award
powered by Molini Pizzuti
He is a living patron saint of pizza-making. Born in the city of Caiazzo in western Italy to a family of bakeries.
How was it beginning?
Franco learnt everything he could from his father, Stefano, who used to spend days in the local countryside picking fresh ingredients like oregano and mushrooms to put on top of pizza. Every time the dough was made there were no scales, recipes, machinery or ready-made ingredients involved; but because Franco watched his father create it from scratch thousands of times over, he didn’t even need to write anything down to learn how the dough should feel when it’s ready.
Pepe in Grani – popularity of the pizzeria
Franco opened his restaurant Pepe in Grani in 2005, just round the corner from his grandfather’s bakery. At the time, Caiazzo was not particularly known for its food. However, thanks to the popularity of the pizzeria and Franco’s work with agronomist Vincenzo Coppola, the surrounding area has become famous for its artisanal producers, particularly its olive oil. The ingredients used to make the pizzas come almost exclusively from these local suppliers, particularly the oil, mozzarella, chickpeas and pork.
Franco Pepe – one of Italy’s preeminent pizzaioli
Nowadays, Franco Pepe is one of Italy’s preeminent pizzaioli. He is constantly developing his craft. He showcased this lifelong pursuit at his restaurant Pepe in Grani in Caiazzo.