At some point in the future, Boston may be home to a Roman-style pizzeria by acclaimed pizzaiolo Gabriele Bonci, also known as “the Michelangelo of pizza.” Bonci plans to open a pizzeria called Bonci in Chicago this summer, reports Eater, and if that works out, he’s eyeing a few other spots for further expansion: Boston, New York, and Philadelphia.
Bonci’s pizza, served by the slice (priced by weight), is baked in rectangular cast-iron pans and served with a variety of toppings, including fancy meats and cheeses as well as carefully sourced produce.
It’s hard to find Roman-style pizza in the Boston area, especially amid the ever-growing swell of Neapolitan-style pizzerias. Back in 2014-2015, Scissors & Pie appeared on Newbury Street with pay-by-weight slices of Roman-style pizza, but despite apparent expansion plans, it disappeared quickly. (In its former space, a fast-casual Greek restaurant called Gre.co is slated to open any day now.)
One place that currently serves up Roman-inspired slices is Eataly. While one of its full-service restaurants, La Pizza & La Pasta, serves Neapolitan pies, one of the grab-and-go counters, La Focacceria, serves Eataly’s version of Roman pizza — long, oval flatbreads with a crispy outer crust and a soft inner core.
Stay tuned for news of Bonci’s potential expansion plans following the summer opening in Chicago. The company is interested in cities that have an active food scene where the public is “educated and attentive enough” to understand the style, according to remarks BonciUSA president Rick Tasman (former CEO of P.F. Chang’s and Buca di Beppo) made to Gambero Rosso (translated from Italian).
If and when Bonci arrives, Bostonians can look forward to “a light, delicate pizza with very big bubbles, and, at the same time, a very crunchy and intense consistency,” as Tasman describes on his LinkedIn profile. Pizza nerds will be interested to know that Bonci’s sourdough starter dates all the way back to World War I.