The modern-day pizza is a culinary masterpiece that takes on virtually limitless forms. Today,
this food is favorite to without a doubt millions of people. It’s definitely one of ours and probably yours as well, but that’s not what we’re here to talk about.
Instead, we’re going to run through the long and colorful history that has gone into the evolution of this beloved treat. Below, we’ll give you four historical facts that have shaped pizza into the food we all enjoy today.
- Pizza Margherita’s claim to fame was a Queen of the same name
Early versions of pizza had been around for centuries. Ancient Roman literature from the poet
Virgil mentions flatbreads that were topped with savory ingredients. This indicates that while they were not yet called pizzas then, versions of the dish were already being eaten by ancient civilizations.
Whatever they were called, they were mostly seen as a peasant’s dish, and it wasn’t until the
18th century that they became iconic. In 1889, King Umberto I and Queen Margherita visited
Naples where they were served what would eventually become known as pizza Margherita, a
thin pie of sliced tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella. From then on, pizza became seen as a dish worthy of royalty and eventually embedded itself into Italian culture.
- America is the second home of the pizza
By the end of the 19th century, pizza was already being widely enjoyed around Italy. It was also during this time that the dish finally set foot on American soil. The dish was brought over by
Italian immigrants, one of whom would later put up the US’s first pizzeria, Lombardi’s, in New
York City. This is why New York-style pizza is similar to classic Italian pizza.
- Almost every state wanted a piece of the pie
As the demand for pizza in the US grew, so did the need for new ingredients and techniques.
Pizza started to evolve rapidly, and it quickly extended from New York to other states. In
Chicago, a heftier version of pizza was born, one that featured a deeper crust and more generous toppings. This is what would become known as Chicago-style deep dish pizza. In
Hawaii, a version of pizza that ignited controversy then (and still continues to do so today)
involved slices of ham and raw pineapple on top of the cheese. Over time, many other states had their own version of pizza.
- The pizza was one of the first deliverable foods.
In was in the middle of the last century when cars and motorcycles started to become more widespread in society. This marked the time when the concept of delivering freshly cooked food to customers’ doors was born. Among the first kinds of food to be delivered this way was pizza!
In 1960, Tom and James Monaghan founded Dominik’s. They delivered pizza to hungry mouths in Michigan and soon became popular for speedy service and delicious food. After experiencing
country-wide success, they renamed their business to Domino’s, which today is one of the
world’s most well-established pizza chains.
Today, the pizzas we all know and love are as varied as the people who enjoy them. What the future holds for pizza and all of us pizza-lovers, we can only wait in eager anticipation to see!
If you want a taste of real Chicago-style deep dish pizza, come visit us and we’ll be happy to