#navbar-iframe { display: none; }

« Home | Pandesal Bakehouse, Beverly Hills » | Adventures in Galician seafood: Percebes goosefoot... » | Three kinds of twice-fried chicken [Stomachs Eleven] » | Rootstock Sydney 2014 » | Two Sticks - Yunnan China, Sydney » | Frenchs Forest Organic Food Market » | Shenkin Kitchen, Enmore » | Yum cha at The Eight, Market City, Haymarket China... » | Rim Tanon, Haymarket Chinatown Sydney » | What to eat in Barcelona, Spain »

Sunday, March 09, 2014

Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown

Woodfire pizza oven at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown

Ask any aficionado. Pizza is a serious business. It's all about the dough. And the topping. The puffiness of the crust. Head to Gigi Pizzeria in Newtown and keep your eyes peeled for the lightbox by the entrance. It's Gigi's official certification by the Associazone Verace Pizza Napoletana. That's the True Neapolitan Pizza Association, certifying pizza makers around the world. There are only five in Sydney and Gigi is one of them*.

Assembling pizzas at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Assembling pizzas - note the pizza clock behind!

The True Neapolitan Pizza Association is a non-profit organisation founded in Naples that seeks to "promote and protect in Italy in worldwide the "true Neapolitan pizza". The rules are long and detailed. Here are some of them:
  • The dough must be worked exclusively by hand
  • The pizza must be placed directly on the floor of a stone oven for 60-90 seconds. It should not be on a tin or rack.
  • The temperature of the stone oven should be about 430C (485C on the cooking surface).
  • The pizza should be eaten as soon as possible, and must be able to be folded in half (a libretto).
  • The pizza should be round with a diameter no larger than 35cm.
  • The dough should have a raised edge with a topping thickness of about 0.4cm in the middle.
  • The crust should be 1-2cm and puffed.
  • The bottom of the pizza should be golden and free of burns.
Slicing pizzas on the pass at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Slicing pizzas on the pass

Gigi's accreditation probably goes some way to explaining why it's so busy. By 6.30pm on a weeknight, the place is full. They don't take bookings either. They don't need to. There's no shortage of punters strolling in - families, couples and groups who are here for both eat-in and takeaway. We find service to be largely distracted, with repeated attempts required to secure the attention of waitstaff and to follow-up on our drinks orders. We're also told by one waitstaff that "I don't take dessert orders" and then forced to find and flag the correct person down ourselves.

But the locals seem to take it all in their stride, and the place is buzzing with activity. All the action centres around the wood-fired oven. It's a stage show in itself with dough being tossed in the air, piping hot pizzas hauled out of the oven, and the crunch crunch of pizza cutters splintering their way through puffed up crusts.

Potato pizza at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Potato pizza $18.50
Potato, mozzarella, fresh rosemary, garlic and truffle oil

We kick things off with potato pizza, a glorious vision of carb-on-carb action that will break any Atkins devotee. The slices of potato are thick enough to still have some bite, but cooked so the flesh is soft and buttery, all drowned in a lake of molten mozzarella accented with fresh rosemary twigs and splashes of truffle oil.

San Daniele prosciutto pizza at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
San Daniele prosciutto pizza $23
San Daniele prosciutto, mushroom and mozzarella 

Our pizzas come out thick and fast. Sheaths of San Daniele prosciutto are still soft and pliable above a bed of mushroom and melted mozzarella.

Three mushrooms and stracchino cheese pizza at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Tre funghi e stracchino pizza $18.50
Stracchino cheese, three types of mushroom and garlic

There's much to love about the three mushroom pizza too. There's an aromatic earthiness to the trio of funghi, and the stracchino - a young creamy Italian cheese made from cow's milk - is mild and milky with a slightly tangy aftertaste.

Pizza crust upskirt shot at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Pizza crust aka the upskirt shot

The pizza base ticks all the boxes too. The edges have risen to a bubbled and fluffy rim and the upskirt shot reveals a speckled brown base, with notes of smokiness from the woodfire oven.

Baby spinach, roasted pumpkin and feta salad at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Zucca insalate $16
Salad of baby spinach, roasted pumpkin, feta, pine nuts and balsamic dressing

The zucca insalate, or pumpkin salad, provides some carb-free reprieve. Cubes of roasted pumpkin are tossed through with baby spinach leaves, pine nuts and chunks of crumbled feta. We polish most of this off before returning to more pizza action, our appetites renewed.

Margherita pizza at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Margherita pizza $16.50
Tomato, mozzarella and fresh basil

Margherita pizza might seem simple to the eye, but it's this minimalism of ingredients that is the true test of a good pizza. It's wetter than most other pizzas, but the oozing river of melted mozzarella swirled through with tomato sauce will satisfy your soul. A humble scattering of fresh basil leaves accents everything. If you manage to polish off a slice without getting tomato sauce all over your shirt, you deserve a certificate.

Diavola devil spicy pizza at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Diavola pizza $19.50
Tomato, mozzarella, hot salami, capsicum, olives and parsley

The diavola or devil pizza is just as fiery as you'd expect in the greater depths of hell. The hot salami will set your tongue on fire - in a good way. You've been warned.

Diavola devil spicy pizza at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Diavola pizza 

Pizza with eggplant at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Pizza with eggplant $20
San Marzano tomato, buffalo mozzarella, ricotta salata and basil

The eggplant pizza is a favourite of the night, thin shavings of eggplant draped across the pizza with buffalo mozzarella, ricotta and fresh basil. I don't think there's a tastier way to eat your vegetables.

Pizza with eggplant at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown

Tiramisu dessert at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Tiramisu $8

Despite our bellies bloated with pizza, we can hardly say no to dessert. The tiramisu arrives in a glass tumbler, a perfect caffeinated pick-me-up, although I find the chocolate drops on the top a tad distracting, interfering with the smoothness of the whipped cream.

Baked ricotta cake dessert at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown
Baked ricotta cake $8

The baked ricotta cake is lusciously light and fluffy, and reminiscent of the famed ricotta cake from Pasticceria Papa in Haberfield.

Fab pizza worth the wait. And if you do order too much, the leftovers are happily packed in a pizza box for takeaway. Helloooooo breakfast.

True Neapolitan Pizza Association membership at Gigi Pizzeria, Newtown

View Larger Map
Gigi Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

Gigi Pizzeria
379 King Street, Newtown, Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 9557 2224

Opening hours:
Tuesday to Sunday 6pm-10.30pm

Related Grab Your Fork posts:
Pizza - Via Napoli, Lane Cove
Pizza - Aperitivo, Leichhardt
31 comments - Add some comment love

posted by Helen (Grab Your Fork) on 3/09/2014 12:02:00 am


  • At 3/09/2014 2:09 am, Anonymous Padaek said…

    Yum! The pizzas look great - I want to try them all, especially the potato, mozzarella, fresh rosemary, garlic and truffle oil. Can't wait!

  • At 3/09/2014 9:19 am, Anonymous shawn@streetfood said…

    Dang, we thought this place was our little secret...

  • At 3/09/2014 10:14 am, Blogger Unknown said…

    Needing pizza now! Amazing little piece of Napoli in good ole Newtown! I need to start a carboholics anonymous soon ;)

  • At 3/09/2014 11:59 am, Blogger Sherrie @ Crystal Noir said…

    Haven't tried potato on pizza but I'm sold at this flavour combo - esp with the truffle oil!

  • At 3/09/2014 11:59 am, Anonymous Cindy (a foodie's joy) said…

    All the pizzas look really good!! Getting hungry looking at your great pics! :)

  • At 3/09/2014 1:39 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    We love Gigi's! And the bonus was catching a gig at The Sando a few doors down. Ah, the memories...

  • At 3/09/2014 3:13 pm, Anonymous Chris @ MAB vs Food said…

    This is a very informative post. Love a great crust on a Naples pizza. All these pizzas look amazing! Another pizza place I will need to check out.

  • At 3/09/2014 5:49 pm, Blogger Mel said…

    I've walked past this place so many times and had no idea it was so great...a member of the NPA no less (who knew there was such a thing as the Neapolitan Pizza Association)! Potato pizza = best pizza EVER!

  • At 3/09/2014 7:40 pm, Blogger Annie said…

    friend has been nagging me to go here for a while so knowing that it is authentic Neapolitan pizza will be a very good reason to go. loving the look of all the pizzas esp the Margherita

  • At 3/09/2014 8:52 pm, Anonymous Andrea said…

    Upskirt shot - love it'! Although you really had me already at potato pizza. The endorsement from Street Food is the icing on the cake! :)

  • At 3/09/2014 11:55 pm, Anonymous Amanda @ Gourmanda said…

    Oooh, I just remembered that I ate here about two years ago and loved it! Such amazing crusts on these pizzas. I have to say though, Via Napoli is still my pick. :)

  • At 3/10/2014 12:19 am, Anonymous Tina@foodboozeshoes said…

    So much pizza! Had no idea this gen was on King Street - thanks for the hot tip!

  • At 3/10/2014 2:02 am, Anonymous chocolatesuze said…

    Teehee love a good upskirt shot. Of a pizza I mean.

  • At 3/10/2014 6:56 am, Anonymous Hannah said…

    I am finally at a place in my life where the pizza appeals more than the salad, thank the lord. But I still want the ricotta cake the most.

  • At 3/10/2014 9:07 am, Anonymous john | heneedsfood said…

    Gigi's is my closest decent pizza joint, yet I rarely go there. Between waiting for a table, enduring the inside heat and that aloof service, I'd rather settle on Pizza Picasso at the bottom of King Street. You can't compare the pizzas, but at least it's in the fresh air, is quick and you can always nab a table.

  • At 3/10/2014 9:39 am, Anonymous angela@mykikicake said…

    Neapolitan pizza, nothing beats it, I have to take a little visit to Newtown ASAP. Since I live down the road from Via Napoli, I have put a slight pause on travelling elsewhere for a good pizza.

  • At 3/10/2014 10:21 am, Blogger Pearls of Style said…

    Pizza is absolutely a serious business! And these look amazinggg. I'm making homemade pizza tonight so you've just inspired my flavour choices. Potato and rosmary - yum!

    Krissie x - http://pearlsofstyle.blogspot.com.au

  • At 3/10/2014 10:31 am, Anonymous Amanda @lambsearsandhoney said…

    I'm a simple girl & Margherita & potato pizza are my absolute favourites. These look perfect. However, I can be a bit of a grumpy girl too and the service here sounds like it might tick me off just a bit.

  • At 3/10/2014 10:51 am, Blogger Down To Feed [DTF] said…

    that prosciutto pizza and ricotta cake looks sooo good!!

  • At 3/10/2014 1:24 pm, Blogger Unknown said…

    Gigi Pizzeria in Sydney is a nice dining place!It makes me carve to taste the baked ricotta cake. Anyway I'm in Kiama Australia, after here i wil fly there.

  • At 3/10/2014 2:16 pm, Blogger leetranlam said…

    Love that you included a sneaky "upskirt" shot and that you flirted with the devil('s pizza). It's been a while, but your post has inspired me to revisit. The mushroom pizza is definitely on the "to order" list.

  • At 3/10/2014 4:03 pm, Blogger Milktea Eats said…

    have heard magical things about this place! mushroom pizza? eggplant pizza? i'm sold!

  • At 3/10/2014 8:40 pm, Anonymous Cara @ Gourmet Chick said…

    Authentic or not - these pizzas look delicious! Potato pizza is one of my favourites - so simple but so good.

  • At 3/10/2014 11:44 pm, Blogger Vivian - vxdollface said…

    I love Neapolitan style pizza! mm carbs and cheese, it's just the best

  • At 3/11/2014 7:31 am, Blogger Ramen Raff said…

    Errmahgerd!!! Seriously legit looking neapolitan pizzas! That bottoms look amazing and that Margherita looks totes amaze!

  • At 3/11/2014 1:02 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I love this place! I've been here 3 times, and I adore the potato pizza. the best pizza.

  • At 3/11/2014 9:38 pm, Anonymous Iron Chef Shellie said…

    mmmmm pizza AND cheesecake!... heaven :D

  • At 3/12/2014 2:15 am, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Girl, that's a lot, I mean A LOT of pizza's !!! The pizza base looks so light and fluffy.

  • At 3/12/2014 1:34 pm, Anonymous gastronomous anonymous said…

    pizza looks great! I have missed good simple pizza....

  • At 3/15/2014 1:40 am, Anonymous sara | Belly Rumbles said…

    The pizza looks fantastic, just the way I like it. Just a shame that the staff can't multitask on order taking.

  • At 3/15/2014 3:34 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Omgsh this looks so good.. i wish i could make pizzas like this at home


Post a Comment

<< Home

      << Read Older Posts       |       >> Read Newer Posts