20 drafts and everything Naples

Washington DC

20 drafts and everything Naples
20 drafts and everything Naples

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If you're committing your restaurant to a specific theme, you might as well go all in -- unless it's a Texas Hold 'Em themed place, in which case that's super risky. For a Neapolitan pizzeria that's authentic down to the last brick, check out Menomale, soft-opening later this week.

From a certificate-holding member of the Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana & a San Fran beer guru, quaint, dual-roomed Meno serves pies amidst a log bar, antique Italian artifacts, and a 6000lb wood-burning pizza oven shipped from Naples, so you know it's first class. The ingredients, too, are sourced from the Campania region, and're cooked above the oven's thick pieces of Italian rock salt & by a pizzaiolo who spent seven years training at the the Napoli guild of pizza, where he was tested on things like tomato classification and "stretching the dough", a skill that'll definitely come in handy after seeing how much it costs to run a restaurant. Speaking of dough, it's made using Denominazione di Origine Protetta certified (...it means it's definitely from Italy...) Caputo "00 flour", which'll bond you to pizze like the panna/ prosciutto cotto/ sauteed porcinis Bianca, the sausage/ San Marzano tomatoes/ mozz Salsiccia, and the cherry tomatoes/ Grana Padano/ arugula Di Ettore.

They've also got 20 draft lines that'll be rotating constantly, but'll generally stick to an outline of five light European lagers, ten standard IPA's/ Kolsch's/ hefeweizens, and five sours/ blends/ barrel-agers specially selected for all the "beer nerds", so ordering one of those is probably the safe bet.

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1. Menomale 2711 12th St NE, Washington, DC 20018 (Noma)

Menomale is a low-key pizzeria in a low-key neighborhood. The owners of the Brookland spot are certified by the Associazione Vera Pizza Napoletana, which means their Neapolitan-style pizzas are recognized by the pizza-making authorities in Naples as legitimate. Everything about Menomale's pies is Italian -- the ingredients are sourced from the Campania region and the toppings include the likes of prosciutto, porcini mushrooms, and Italian sausage. The menu also includes sandwiches made with pizza dough, calzones, and gluten-free crust options.

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