Piatto Pizzeria has officially requested the city’s permission to take over the empty Canadian Tire on Elisabeth Avenue. They also want to include an outdoor eating area for the summer and fall. 

In our December issue, thousands of local diners declared Piatto’s is “The Best Pizza Joint in Town” based on their popular location on Duckworth Street. Piatto’s serve authentic wood-fired pizzas – you can see the oven from the seating area. It’s all part of the regulations of their VPN designation.

VPN stands for “Verace Pizza Napoletana,” which basically means “true Napolean pizza.” In the 1980s, a group of pizza makers from Naples started an international non-profit organization to ensure pizza makers claiming to make true Napolean pizzas were actually doing that claim justice. The Italian government made this VPN designation “a legal entity able to give special designation to pizzerias who meet strict requirements that respect the tradition of the art of Neapolitan pizza making.”

In a nutshell, VPN pizzerias must make their pies using specific ingredients and methods, and they can only use certain approved equipment in cooking them (like the wood-fired oven). The strict guidelines even dictate how long a pizza is allowed to cook, and what size the pizza can be – you’ll find no small, medium, or large on their menu.

As Piatto’s website states, “You experience a true pizza like you would find in the energetic pizzerias in Italy (but without the airfare).” The certification is no joke: it costs $2,000, and has an annual fee of about $250. But ultimately, what matters more than marketable designations, is the taste test, and Piatto’s really is really good.