Words & Photo || Gary J Boulanger
Some say Anthony Mangieri's authentic Neapolitan pizza is the best in the U.S. Others say his collection of tattoos is the best, while still others say his penchant for perfection--and his passion for cycling--makes him the ideal man for the job of punk-rock pizzaiolo.
The New Jersey native gained worldwide notoriety with his Una Pizza Napoletana in the East Village of New York City before moving--lock, stock and barrel--to San Francisco in 2010. He recently added a Pegoretti road bike with all Italian components (Campagnolo Record gruppo, Deda cockpit, Gommaitalia handmade tires, fi'zi:k saddle, seatpost and bar tape) to his stable of bicycles, most of which are custom singlespeed mountain bikes.
1. Just how authentic are we talking about with Mangieri? He fell in love with and eventually married a lovely woman from Naples, Italy, who shares his passion for food, and supports his dedication to cycling with gifts like the Rapha jersey he's wearing above.
2. Despite a booming business and a rising star in New York City, the 41-year-old felt the pull of Mt. Tamalpais and the unlimited roads in northern California enough to start over in the City by the Bay.
3. He wears limited-edition Vans while making dough and pizza every day and night, and has former skateboard legend-turned guitar hero Tommy Guerrero play at his shop when he's in town.
4. Una Pizza Napoletana serves 12-inch pies made only by Mangieri, with dough that's naturally risen, and no slices. In fact, there's no garlic bread, no salad, no dessert. And just five choices of pizza. The wine is other worldly, as is the post-dinner coffee.
5. On his days off, Mangieri works out his demons and clears his head like any self-respecting entrepreneur: riding a singlespeed in the redwoods of Santa Cruz, or piloting the Pego on the Panoramic Highway along the Bolinas Ridge, with the Pacific Ocean blowing a cool California fog and a focused Italian pizza maker over hill and dale.