The World is Big, The World is Small

Ten years have passed and I am still excited to open the door of the pizzeria each day.  Though my routine has changed little–making pizza dough, thinking about wine, good things to eat and better ways to put food on the table–my appreciation and gratitude for all who support Spacca Napoli continues to grow in leaps and bounds.  I could go to the moon and back with the joy I feel.  We are truly blessed.  So many have contributed and in so many ways; the staff, our vendors, our diners, our producers both here in America and Italia, and most important, those who come to the rescue when we run into obstacles.  I cannot say thank you enough.

My work does not feel like work.  I am fueled by the incredible satisfaction I experience sharing what we do, and when thinking of the artisans–whether it be wine, cheese, prosciutto, beans, balsamic vinegar or fine art–of their stories and the most lovely settings where they live and work.  Though Italy is my second home, and has been for close to thirty years, my heart belongs right here in Chicago at Spacca Napoli. 

I have two “clips” I would like to share.  Though they may seem very different, the spirit of the poetry underlying each reflects a sense of the passion that motivates us.  Please enjoy our oven builders (la famiglia Agliarulo) in motion with our second oven and Michele Simonelli with Paolo Raffone, sharing the music of Pino Daniele–considered by many as the artist who best represents Napulé.  See you in the coming year.   

 - JG

Books, Music & Photography

A few of our favorite Pizza books...


The Pizza Bible by Tony Gemignani

Passion for Pizza:
A Journey Through Thick and Thin to Find the Pizza Elite

by Craig Whitson & Tore Gjesteland

Inventing the Pizzeria: A History of Pizza Making in Naples 
by Antonio Mattozzi

Le Vie Della Pizza by Domenico Mazzella

Pizza by Gabriele Bonci

The Southern Italian Table:
Authentic Tastes from Traditional Kitchens by Arthur Schwartz

Naples at Table: Cooking in Campania by Arthur Schwartz

A16 Food + Wine
by Nate Appleman & Shelley Lindgren with Kate Leahy

The Mediterranean Kitchen by Joyce Goldstein

Giuliano Bugialli's Foods of Naples and Campania
by Giuliano Bugialli

Selected tracks from
Passione - Un'Avventura Musicale (Soundtrack)
A film directed by John Turturro

Jed Fielding Photography City of Secrets: Photographs of Naples by Jed Fielding


A strange light inhabits the photographs of Jed Fielding, a pale gray that one associates with place.  It has the cool texture of marble.  It preserves a certain formality, even if the camera lens allows little personal space.  It has a hallowing glow as it lights his subjects, denizens of the mean streets of Naples, with indigent pride.  It gilds their disenfranchisement, their dispossession in the ghetto, with a strong sense of energy, tribal power, physicality, self-possession.  Even if the accouterments of life in Naples are spartan, the light is triumphantly not.  Elegant, voluptuous, vibrant, it registers joy in life as Fielding photographs limbs, faces, gestures, the bold stare of infants, the withered faces of age, the laughter of children.


From the essay Portraits from a City, City of Secrets, 1998, by Nan Richardson.

Travel Recommendations


  Hotel Annalena

  Alla Vecchia Bettola



  Antica Macelleria Cecchini



  Pizzarium Bonci


Castel gandolfo

  Hotel Castelgandolfo

  Ristorante Bucci


Castel DI Sasso

  Agriturismo Le Campestre



  B&B Donna Regina

  Trattoria Da Nennella

  Osteria della Mattonella

  Ristorante Mattozzi Europeo



  Il Giardino dell'Arte, +39 081 837 3025



  Hotel Ristorante Bacco



  Tentua Vannulo



  Agriturismo Seliano



  Med Farine Club, +39 340 582 5981



  Vini Alois


New York City

  Keste Pizzeria

  Don Antonio by Starita Pizzeria

  Emilio's Ballato, (212) 274-8881