Romans might object, but pizza is traditionally associated with Naples. From the earliest part of the 19th Century, this tasty and convenient comfort food was popular in Naples and throughout the surrounding area, though, because it consisted of mainly bread and vegetables, it was seen as a poor person’s food.
All of that changed on December 11, 1889, when King Umberto and Queen Margherita made an official royal visit to the region and asked to sample the local delicacy that everyone was talking about.
Pizza Chef Raffaele Esposito, who liked to experiment with unusual ingredients and is often credited with being the first to use mozzarella on a pizza, used the cheese, along with fresh basil and tomato sauce, to simulate the red, white, and green of the Italian flag.
Queen Margherita declared the pizza “officially delicious,” which started a fad that quickly spread across Italy, and eventually, to all four corners of the world!
Some will argue that Esposito’s restaurant, which still exists, and where Queen Margherita’s letter is proudly displayed, was not the birthplace of the modern pizza, but it would be hard to find anyone who doesn’t agree that pizza is a mouth-watering treat that anyone, anywhere, can enjoy any time!
Writer: Robbie Dillon