The small bakery in Abruzzo where you can enjoy an amazing red pizza

Mar 14 2024, 12:41
A bakery with a typical wooden signboard, enchanting everyone with its tomato pizza, crispy and delicious

A small medieval village that smells like... pizza. Anversa degli Abruzzi is a characteristic village in the Sagittarius Valley, preserving ancient traditions and gastronomic treasures. Great cheeses (this is also the home of Nunzio Marcelli, the cheese maker of La Porta dei Parchi) and famous baked goods throughout the area. The symbol of the village? The extraordinary red pizza.

The small Abruzzo bakery famous for its red pizza

The workshop has always existed, then in the 1980s Demetrio Cifani and Giuseppina D'Orazio took it over and turned it into a bakery. No family history, no inheritance: they started from scratch, they loved bread but had never made it professionally, but they were eager to try, and so they launched themselves. It has been a journey, "a journey that continues to this day," says Demetrio. They certainly didn't expect such success: their pizza is now sold in almost all the grocery stores in neighboring towns, and anyone passing through to reach the more touristy Scanno doesn't miss a stop at the legendary Panificio Anversa.

An addictive pizza

"We wanted to make quality products that told the territory, both savory and sweet. We use simple raw materials, the usual ones: Italian flours, extra virgin olive oil, few elements that we work with care." The undisputed queen is the pizza, a high-hydration dough cooked for a long time, "more than an hour in the oven" seasoned with plenty of good tomato and a nice dose of oil. Crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, when you bite into the corner it's pure poetry: it's hard to stop at just one piece. Also because the base is light, digestible, the topping generous and very tasty, "we worked on it for a long time, we perfected the dough over time, also to ensure that it keeps well." Buy it early in the morning: it will still be fragrant and delicious in the evening.

Dry biscuits and holiday donuts

The peak production period is in summer, with holidaymakers arriving from other cities, but pizza is continuously baked here, "sometimes it runs out quickly" and it can also be found in various shops and stores in the surrounding area, as well as in a dedicated outlet in Sulmona, right in Piazza Giuseppe Garibaldi. The workshop is small, "developed inside a building in the village," focusing on classics. Few but good, like orange donuts, wine donuts, anise donuts, mustaccioli, amaretti or bishop's sweets, "a kind of biscotti but softer, enriched with almonds and raisins" and then the iconic milk biscuits "which are very popular for breakfast here."

Holiday sweets are all there too: the San Biagio donut or the one for the traditional feast of San Domenico in Cocullo, a neighboring village famous for the Feast of the Serpent Handlers, a characteristic celebration of the patron saint, which, among the various miracles, includes that of killing the serpent (at the San Domenico Dam near the nearby Villalago, there is a beautiful hermitage dedicated to its history).

Bread and the dream of an Abruzzo couple

Even the bread is the classic one of the area, the basic homemade one or the one with potatoes, a symbol of Abruzzo, "but we also make rosettes, baguettes, sesame seed rolls and many loaves with semolina flour." The bakery is still family-run, with four children alongside Demetrio and Giuseppina, and forty years after opening, the couple's endeavor is decidedly a success.
"We shouldn't be the ones to say this," Demetrio adds embarrassed, with the humility of the early years that has never left him. Alright then, we'll say it: this pizza really makes you dream.

Panificio Anversa - Anversa degli Abruzzi (AQ) - Corso Raynaldo d'Anversa, 34 -

cross linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram