There’s a new casual Italian restaurant in Bonifacio Global City (BGC) that caters to the whole family.
A few weeks ago, on the invitation of Ellen Ong, my friends and I, along with our sons, met at Peperosso for lunch.
Ellen’s husband Angelo owns the restaurant with a group of partners, including Italian Roberto Rossino. It was Rossino’s dream to bring authentic Neapolitan pizza to Manila, and that was how Peperosso came to be.
Rossino is no stranger to the food industry. A graduate of Les Roches, Switzerland, he has extensive F&B experience in Europe and Asia. His friendship with a fellow Italian, Neapolitan pizza master Roberto di Massa, made his dream come true.
Di Massa is a member of the Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana (AVPN), the organization that certifies Neapolitan pizzerias worldwide. Not only is he a bona fide culinary instructor specializing in the art of creating Neapolitan pizzas, but a certifier as well. He has the authority to stamp an eatery as one that serves authentic Neapolitan pizza, following the stringent guidelines that come with the certification.
Under the master’s tutelage, the restaurant’s operations manager Felix Ang became a pizzaiolo (pizza maker).
Making pizza in the style of Naples follows a rigorous process. Felix said that authenticity can be achieved only by using original, fresh ingredients. It is also vital that the right procedure is applied, from preparing the dough to layering the toppings.
Peperosso uses only Italian flour type “00” from 5 Stagione Mill (which is AVPN-approved) for its pizza crust. Following a very precise method, Felix and his team prepare the dough step by step. It is then left to rest for 24 hours. The result of that long proofing process is a crust that is very light and supple.
Unlike other crusts, this is easy to digest due to the scant quantity of yeast in the mix. Also, Neapolitan pizza is meant to look rustic: an imperfect circle with edges slightly charred. It is soft to the bite, thin and moist in the center due to the profuse slathering of tomato sauce and the added moisture from fresh mozzarella.
To qualify as authentic, the pizza can use only certain types of tomatoes. Peperosso imports its San Marzano tomatoes.
The owners take pride in their classic Pizza Napolitana, the “Margherita DOP” (Denominazione d’ Origine Protetta” or protected designation of origin).
The pizza’s flavors, blended from the premium ingredients, coupled with the crust’s mouth feel and smokiness, makes for a memorable biting and eating experience.
I was thrilled that Ang catered to my whim and prepared a four-in-one for me. Felix masterfully put together a combination of Epomeo, longganisa, margherita and tartufina.
There are many pizza variants available at Peperosso. I particularly liked the Epomeo that had on it pumpkin flowers, zucchini, smoked provolone, mozzarella and extra-virgin olive oil.
But there is more to the restaurant than just pizza. The pastas we had were tasty. I also liked the vongole. While my son Diego and his friends happily feasted on the the tartufo (truffle cream sauce with wild mushroom pasta), they also devoured their pepperoni and cheese pizzas.
The menu at Peperosso is geared towards a selection of all-time favorites, Italian comfort food as we remember it, devoid of frills, prepared with a light hand and go down easy.
Peperosso is at Unit WS-3 Burgos Circle, Forbes Town Center, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. Call 8776588, 0906-4190638.