In Argentina’s wine country Mendoza, the best Malbec takes years to make. But some of the best pizza is served up in seconds. Speedy service is just what Pizzeria Capri is known for. As one local pizza lover put it, Pizzeria Capri serves “fast, fast food.”
Mendoza is a popular destination city for mostly Brazilian tourists. The snow-covered Andes, fine wineries and steak houses are a year-round draw for the town. But you won’t find many tourists at this local staple. Capri has been in business since 1962, surviving financial crises, erratic inflation and political turbulence. Today it is the oldest standing pizzeria in Mendoza. But it’s not its history that makes it popular – it’s the speed.
General Manager Mariano says their customers call Pizzeria Capri the fastest pizzeria in the world. “We sell pizza in less than 30 seconds that’s why the demand is so high – whether it’s dine in, takeout or delivery. People come in knowing it won’t take any time.”
What’s their secret to speed? Pizzas only come in a few varieties, and their toppings are put on post-bake. This allows the staff to always be one step ahead of the customer. There is always one or two piping hot cheese pizzas ready to be sliced up and topped at lightening speed.
Capri serves a traditional Argentinian style of pizza which is soft on the inside, crunchy on the outside and baked in a pan. Without fail, this variety of pizza is heaped with cheese and even a plain slice gets one or two green olives.
Of course they don’t call a cheese pizza “plain,” they call it a “muzzarella.” That’s how you see mozzarella spelled in Argentina. But mozzarella is only one of the ingredients in Pizzeria Capri’s secret cheese blend. The others are creamy cheeses, Mariano hints, not willing to reveal their winning combination. The finished cheese is smooth on the pizza, melty and falls apart in your mouth.
If you’re still hungry after one decadent slice of pizza from Capri, there are also empanadas. These small meat turnovers are traditionally made and served in nearly every pizzeria in Argentina.