Pizza is Italian, we all know that. Although there’s also a school of thought that it is in fact American, or at the very least Italian-American. A dish that was refined and honed to perfection on the streets of New York, so that most of what we eat nowadays is nothing like how it all started back in Naples in the early 18th Century.
Whatever the origins of pizza, most people will argue that us Brits have had very little to do with it’s development, only really getting in on the act fairly recently, and even then it’s just to re-create what our European and Trans-Atlantic cousins have already done.
But one man, Michael Clay, Head Chef and owner of Ancoats’ Elnecot and now Dokes Pizzeria, has taken it upon himself to re-invent the pizza but using only the very best in local, British produce – effectively making each one of his creations a canvas on which to display some of the UK’s best cheeses, meats, vegetables and ingredients.
Years of working with the very best local and British suppliers over at Elnecot has put Michael in the perfect position for creating truly impressive pizzas with some very imaginative toppings.
He’s christened Dokes as ‘Anglo-Saxon’ Pizza, and it perfectly encapsulates what these loaded pies are all about. So you’ll find air-dried duck breast from Trealy Farm in South Wales, Curthwaite Goat’s Curd from Cumbria, truffles from Wiltshire and British burrata – all on top of fresh pizza bases made using British flour from heritage grains.
Serious contender for the best pizza in the city is the Beowulf (£11); with Trealy Farm Welsh Chorizo and Nduja, British Burrata and a homemade gremolata (made with chopped parsley, lemon zest and garlic).
Or perhaps it’s the Tre Lancashire (£11); which comes topped with three superb British cheeses (‘Owd Yonner, Chepyn Blue and Grace’s Goat), candied walnuts, Bramley apple sauce and foraged wild garlic.
Or there’s the Griffin’s Share (£12) which is topped with confit lamb shoulder and courgette cream, or the Ay Up Me Duck (£14) with air-dried duck breast, lardo, duck egg, rainbow chard and British burrata.
Also well worth a mention are the homemade dips, including a Chepyn Blue Cheese Ranch, Chilli and Kaffir Lime Jam, Wiltshire Truffle and a banging Saddleworth Hot Honey Butter which I would happily bathe in for the rest of my days.
You’ll also find Ice Cream from Saddleworth’s Grandpa Greene’s – quite possibly the best ice cream in the world.
So these pizzas aren’t really Italian at all, or even American – they’re wholeheartedly British, and by using only the best produce from throughout these Isles, you get a completely new pizza-eating experience – and something that you’re unlikely to find anywhere else in the UK.
As the seasons change so too will the pizzas at Dokes, so keep your eye on their socials for menu changes as ingredients come into season and Michael comes up with the best ways to use them.
Dokes Pizzeria is now open down at Society on Barbirolli Square, and is also available for delivery through Food Stuff. Get yourself some of these beauties ASAP…