Ronan’s Trip to Naples
Our love affair with Neapolitan Pizza began on a family trip to Naples as kids. As soon as we started this business in June 2013 we have tried to get back over to Naples to train at the best Pizza School in the world, at The Associazione Vera Pizza Napoletana.
We were over a year and a half on the waiting list and in April 2015 we got the call that there was an opening. With space for only one on the course, the only Bro for the job was Head Chef, The Dough Daddy himself Ronan.
Ronan spent 2 weeks training in Naples. Any thoughts of a little holiday were quickly dispelled. The training ran for 11 days straight, beginning at 8 in the morning every morning and sometimes not finishing till 8 in the evening.
In the morning the class would be taken to meet all the 3rd and 4th generation producers of all the key ingredients to make great pizzas. From the oven manufacturers, Buffallo Mozzarella producers, makers of the famous ‘00’ flour, to the farms where the San Marzano tomatoes were grown, and learning the history and production process of each.
After meeting the producers in the morning and learning the importance of the key ingredients, it was back to class for theory and practical work for 4 hours, where he learnt everything from the fermentation process of the dough to cooking in a wood fired oven, to how to hand slap the pizza bases.
The day didn’t stop there, after class they went straight back into downtown Naples to do work experience in some of the city’s most famous pizzerias, to see and learn from the very best.
At the end of the 2 weeks, the class had to sit an exam to see if they passed and would be credited with the certification from
The Associazione Vera Pizza Napoletana. Before sitting the exam the class were told nobody gets over 70 marks of a 100. Out of 15 in the class, Ronan scored a 70.5 and came a very close 2nd, losing out to 1st place by 0.5 of a mark to an Italian who had 5 years working as a pizza chef. Not bad going at all from The Dough Daddy!