6/27/2012 03:00:00 AM

Pizza Pilgrims on Their Mobile Pizzeria, Rooftop Supper Club

The Pizza Pilgrims are making a right meal out of pizza! They sell Napoli-inspired pies to Soho office workers fresh from an oven built in the back of their van - and until September are hosting a rooftop pizza supper club in London. We sat down with brothers James and Thom Elliot to hear the latest:

Zagat: Firstly, why pizza?

PP: The idea came about a few years back when James was on a cooking course in Italy and fell in love with the Pompeii oven in the garden. We sat on the idea until the London street food movement kicked in and we realised no one was doing pizza.

Zagat: Can you tell us about your portable pizza oven/car?

PP: Our little Piaggio Ape TM is a complete beast: 219cc of raw engine power, top speed of 40 mph (unloaded) and three wheels. We got her fitted with a 650kg gas-fired stone oven. No one knew whether it would work - even the people at the Piaggio factory had their doubts - but it was a great feeling seeing her drive away from the workshop with the oven in the back for the first time!

Zagat: What's the difference with pizza made in a wood-fired oven?

PP: Personally, we think that the wood-fired thing is a little bit of Italian romanticism. Our oven can run on gas or wood but we prefer the gas as it gives a real consistency of heat. We heard over and over again during our time in Naples that heat and an open flame are what is really important - many of the top pizzerias in and around Naples use a gas oven. It definitely divides opinion, but we still feel that it is the quality of the oven that is important, not whether it is fired by gas or wood.   

Zagat: Your rooftop supper club, Forzawin, is open until September, what can we expect?

PP: We are serving a three-course Italian meal with an amazing view. Pizzas will be the cornerstone of the meal, but we also serve slow-cooked traditional ragu with pasta and granita from Gelupo. There is entertainment every night - anything from a band or talk to food and drink matching.

Zagat: Will your food truck be closed while the supper club is on?

PP: No, the food truck will be open on Berwick Street every weekday at lunchtime and we'll also be popping along to events and festivals. Follow us on Twitter for more details.

Zagat: Do you have plans to open a permanent pizzeria in London?

PP: At the moment we are just focusing on the summer. Once it gets colder we will have to think of a plan for the winter.

Zagat: And finally, besides your own, where is your favourite pizza in London?

PP: It has to be Santa Maria in Ealing. It is the closest you will get to being in a Naples pizzeria in London.

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