An Australian chef has pulled an upset and won the 2014 Pizza World Championship for making the world’s best Neapolitan-style pizza.
According to The Local, the annual competition has more than 600 chefs competing for the title in front of an international panel of judges. More than 3,000 pizzas are made during the competition. This year’s winner, Johnny Di Francesco, works at the 400 Gradi pizzeria in Melbourne, Australia, which now has some serious bragging rights in the race for best local pizza. Di Francesco’s family originally came from Naples, and the chef trained there as well.
The second place prize for the best Neapolitan-style pizza went to Marco Fuso of London’s Franco Manca, and the third place went to a pizza chef from southern Italy.
International chefs made a good showing in the Neapolitan category, but the prize for best “classic” pizza stayed at home. Giulio Scialpi from Bari in southern Italy won the top prize in his category for a creation topped with with mozzarella and caciocavallo cheeses, eggplant, and bread crumbs.
“I have tried to win since 2000,” he said. “I dedicate my victory to my wife and children.”