The Best Pizza in Memphis
I’d like to begin my review of the best pizzeria in Memphis by stating an obvious fact that anyone who clicks the link to the interactive map below will immediately notice, the best pizzeria in Memphis isn’t in Memphis.
My favorite pizzeria is none other than the family-owned and operated Ciao Baby pizzeria in Collierville, a small suburb located less than 20 minutes from Memphis. The 20 minute trek is inconsequential because many of my friends and family happily make the drive frequently to get an authentic Neapolitan pie.
What is an authentic Neapolitan pie you may ask? For a pizza to be authentic Neapolitan it must meet a certain criteria. It must be made with San Marzano tomatoes, which grow on the volcanic plains to the south of Mount Vesuvius at Pompei, genuine Neapolitan pizza dough consisting of Italian wheat flour, and mozzarella di bufala Campana, made with the milk from water buffalo raised in the marshlands of Campania and Lazi, Italy. The pizza must be baked for 60–90 seconds in a 905 °F stone oven with an oak-wood fire.
At Ciao Baby, they take these traditional pizzas and turn them into true works of art. They use fresh ingredients to produce pizzas with toppings both customary and some that are truly creative.
My favorite pizza with customary toppings is “The Big Topper” made with San Marzano tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, pepperoni, red onions, mushrooms, bacon, sausage, banana peppers, green peppers, and black olives.
Big Topper indeed! This pizza is so good that words cannot describe the experience that this pizza delivers, and the crust! I’ll stop here. Just try it!
My favorite pizza with toppings that I’ll call creative is the “Scusi” made with San Marzano tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, cheddar cheese, grilled chicken, fresh cilantro, with a chipotle pesto drizzle.
This is a pizza that I hold near and dear to my heart. These ingredients while seemingly random combine for a real culinary treat.
I paid a visit to Ciao Baby a couple of weeks ago and while walking into the restaurant I still hadn’t decided on which pizza I wanted. I then noticed this sign at the entrance:
I decided to try one of their new creations the “Andouille Louie” made with Andouille sausage, provolone, mozzarella, green peppers, and red onions with hot chili honey.
This pizza was simply delicious. The stand out ingredient was the hot chili honey. It’s addition melded this pie into a truly delectable treat.
Having visited pizzerias in many parts of the country, Ciao Baby is definitely my favorite. I’m fortunate that the best pizzaria in Memphis (that’s not in Memphis) is so close to home.
I’ll be visiting Naples, Italy the birthplace of the pizza this summer. Is the birthplace the best or has their creation been eclipsed? Stay tuned to find out!
What’s your favorite pizza in the Memphis area? Let us know in the comments below!
Ciao Baby is located at 890 W Poplar Ave, Collierville, TN 38017
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