Pizza is one of the best-known and widely exported Italian foods and yet relatively little is known about its origins in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Myths such as the naming of pizza margherita after the Italian queen abound, but little serious scholarly attention has been devoted to the topic. Eschewing exaggerated fables, this book draws a detailed portrait of the difficulties experienced by the then marginalized class of pizza makers, rather than the ultimate success of their descendants. It provides a unique exploration of the history of pizza making in Naples, offering an archival-based history of the early story of pizza and the establishment of the pizzeria.
Touching upon issues of politics, economics and sociology, Inventing the Pizzeria contributes not only to the commercial, social and food history of Italy but also provides an urban history of a major European city, told through one of its most famous edible exports.