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Brighton's Pizzaface in finals of National Pizza Awards 2022

Pizzaface’s 2022 entry – ’Nduja Wanna – features south coast produce

Sixteen of the UK’s finest pizzas will be cooked up in London this November, having been chosen as finalists in the highly anticipated National Pizza Awards writes Nick Mosley.

The sixth edition of the reputed event will see chefs from restaurants, street food stalls and pop-ups go head-to-head to see which brand’s signature pizza is named the best in the UK.

Brighton and Hove is well represented in this year’s stellar line-up with two entries including Pizzaface which has branches in both Brighton and Worthing, alongside Fatto A Mano.

“This will be our third year reaching the final”, said Bertie van der Beek, owner of Pizzaface. “The first year we won pizza of the year with our ‘Jakub', which has been our most popular pizza since we created it”. 

“Last year we did a Japanese inspired pizza with 24 hour sous vide pork belly and tare sauce.  This year we have taken inspiration from a number of producers along the south coast – the pizza uses Dorset Nduja, Sussex chilli honey, and flame roasted padron peppers. We wanted to let the quality of each individual ingredient sing, but also combine together perfectly. 

“Once again, Brigitta Stamber who helps run Pizzaface as a whole will be representing us, after her success in previous entries”. 

Brigitta Stamber and Bertie van der Beek of Pizzaface won the awards in 2019

Bertie says that the day is good opportunity to meet up with friends and colleagues in the industry who are are currently facing very similar financial and challenges.

“The National Pizza Awards has always been a fun day and a great chance to meet up with other great pizzerias”, he said. 

“Like many others in the industry, we are facing very tough times. When our energy contracts renew in November we have been quoted rates that are a ten-fold increase of our current rates, which coupled with all the other increases in costs we have already faced will force us into an existential crisis. More help for hospitality businesses will be needed to in order to ensure that places survive”.

The live final will take place on 9 November at Islington Metalworks in London. On top of the signature round, competitors will participate in a technical challenge, where they will use a specific selection of sponsor ingredients to make a dish with the potential to win them the National Pizza Chef of the Year title. This year’s event also includes a meat-free round, sponsored by former champion Purezza. Winners will be decided by a carefully selected panel of expert industry judges.

“The calibre of entries for the National Pizza Awards 2022 was so high that it made our job of selecting finalists more than a little tricky,” says Genna Ash-Brown, editor of Dine Out magazine, which organises the annual event.

“But this year’s line-up genuinely is our best yet. The finalists are preparing for battle as we get ready to fire up the ovens and count down the days until we showcase the very best pizza creations the industry has to offer. This is an event you won’t want to miss!”.


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