The buzz surrounded Nicli Pizza Antica has been growing in Vancouver ever since the Gastown area building was purchased last winter. The restaurant, finally opened a few months ago  is serving up traditional Naples style pizza and has people lining up out the door nearly every night. The passionate owner Bill McCaig has spent much time perfecting this pizza, even taking the time to get Nicli established with a ‘Vera Pizza Napoletana’ certification. This isn’t your typical pepperoni pizza, it’s serious stuff.

The cardinal rules of making a traditional Naples style pizza are that first and foremost the dough must be formed by hand and according to Italian law  ‘the texture must be soft, elastic, easily foldable”. Cooked at no more than 905 degrees F in a wood fired oven for 90 seconds this pizza is a real piece of art. There are also requirements the toppings must meet as well there are certain types of italian tomatoes, meats and cheeses that are deemed appropriate.

This may sound like one pretentious pizza but the experience and flavours that come from one such masterpiece of a pizza is one you will never forget. Nicli Pizza Antica has done an excellent job of meeting these serious pizza standards and offers a variety of pizzas to choose from. The ”Capricciosa’ is topped with artichokes, prosciutto, mushrooms, black olives, fresh basil and italian cheese is so delicious, I swear you’ll never reach for a box of McCain’s Rising Crust ever again.

The drinks at Nicli are just as fresh as the pizza itself. The beer menu is deliciously unique, you can watch the bartenders grate fresh pears and slice strawberries for their killer cocktail list. The only downside to waiting at the bar and watching your drinks exquisitely prepared is the fact that there are no bar stools. So prepare yourself for a long, loooooooong wait to actually sit down and actually be able to to eat the pizza since they do not take reservations and they don’t offer a waiting area. Lunch hour might be a better time to go once the buzz surrounding this place dies down a bit.  Hopefully this place sticks around longer then the ill-fated Corner Suite Bisto Deluxe that died a painful death after the Olympics.

This E. Cordova Pizzeria has taken pizza to a “whole ‘notha level” in Vancouver and is absolutely worth the wait. Viva Italia!

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