MY mother was known for her pizza but they were never round, not when we were growing up anyway. She would pull them from the ancient coal-fired cast iron range in the living room on long blackened oblong trays, the dough she had spent the day making puffed and undulating but always thin and super chewy.

The sugo, too, not just plain tomatoes, baked into the surface in cracked pools of crimson mud from an evaporated lake, intense garlic chunks and licoricey fennel seeds gasping on its still steaming surface. We never, ever had mozzarella either, not even the cooking stuff. Shock, horror! I assume it wasn’t available on the west coast of Scotland back in the day. Or if it was, it costa troppo.

As for fior di latte? Lol. It was always Dunlop cheddar from the cash ’n’ carry. Melted and stringy as she would cut us squares with her kitchen scissors.

I think that’s one of the reasons I’m not that keen on a wet pizza, never have been: gloopy runny toppings that can’t wait to landslide off the side interfere with my whole karma. But I’m in a minority, in my house anyway. And probably in the whole wide world where the lightness and flavour of the San Marzano tomato is a global phenomenon apparently best appreciated damp.

We’re having round, wet, slippery-surfaced pizza anyway from 800 Degrees in Glasgow’s Clarkston tonight. Delivered in a frankly amazing 29 minutes from order to ding-dong. Hot, fresh, chewy-doughed and wood-fired apparently at 800 degrees in the correct Neapolitan style. Very light too.

These are proper pizzas undoubtedly which is why my wife is a big fan. And, of course, the choice of topping makes a difference – nope, I didn’t pick. We’ve come over all fior di latte and prosciutto, sugo with Parma and extra cheese and actually my favourite: delicious panzerotti.

These are baked, I think, not fried, but are still fat, pillowy mouthfuls of pleasure, stuffed with oozing tomato, more fior di latte and basil and a bargain at £4.

Given that we can and do make our own pizza it’s probably surprising that this is the second one of the week that’s been ordered in but have you tried buying flour recently?

Anyway, there was pizza from Baffo in the west end of Glasgow courtesy of a Michelin man on a scooter who removed two whole completely undamaged pizza boxes from under the seat. More high-quality pizza and, yes, once again far better than I could have made.

Baffo have got a place across from Kelvingrove Art Gallery. Their pizzas are normally square as I recall and I was kinda expecting square, but the order says tonda and it turns out that, thanks to the crisis, square is off. We’ll have a debate whilst eating about how we’ve accidentally ordered two bianca, meaning no sugo, and also meaning no moaning from me or pooh-poohing me from everyone else.

How we didn’t notice this when one of them is actually called the pizza bianca I put down to the usual Mackenna ordering process which goes like this: ooh, um, err oh just pick me anything.

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Now, they go to town on the cafone at Baffo, which weighs in at £9 and has, most importantly for us, potato. Don’t start my family on the potato pizza in Italy. You’d think it was gold.

This is not the usual thin-sliced, slightly crisped at the edges, layered potato but is small, moist, possibly cooked-in-oil shreds interspersed with porchetta, Italian sausage, fior di latte and garlic oil, of all things. Whatever the combo, it works. Good, very fresh dough, too. Though I’ve yet to see a simple but fabulous marinara in the style of, say, Da Michele in Naples make it into top end Glasgow pizzerias.

Funnily enough whilst grazing the internet I see on Napoli Today that at last pizza home delivery is to be allowed to resume there. Whew. Their lockdown clearly has been tough.

Menu: Both these pizzeria offer pizzas at the top end of the food chain, righteously sourced, properly fresh and decently baked.

Price, It’s around a tenner for a sugo with Parma ham from 800 Degrees, and the panzerotti are from £4; Baffo’s cafone was £9.

Food: Okay, we’re not in Italy, but care and thought has gone into making the pizza from both these places and it shows in the lightness and chewiness and all-round-good eating from both places.

800 Degrees

Station Road




1377 Argyle Street


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