FOOD REVIEW: Pizza king’s legacy lives on at Dolcipani

It is now six months since Devizes lost one of his best loved characters when baker, chef and all-round good guy Giovanni Campanella lost his fight with lung cancer.

He told his family he wanted Dolcipani cafe and coffee shop in Old Swan Yard to continue and for its popular Friday evening pizza nights to also remain on the menu.

His uncle Enzo and partner Daniella have honoured his wish but can the restaurant which Gianni laboured through his darkest times to make a huge success still deliver?

The answer is definitely yes. Of course his regulars still miss his charm, his warmth and his ability to make everyone feel genuinely wanted.

But his legacy continues and this is particularly true on a Friday evening when pizzas take centre stage and thanks to the loyal kitchen staff have not changed. They are still as great as ever and live up to their reputation for being produced in traditional Sicilian fashion.

Uncle Enzo did not ask to be thrust into the limelight. He is a musician at heart and is a loveable character doing his very best to keep his promise to his beloved nephew.

We decided to round off an evening at the Devizes Lantern Parade and Christmas light switch-on with a family meal at Dolcipani on Friday night.

Outside it was chilly but inside the welcome from Enzo and his staff was warm. The six of us ordered some anti pasta sharing plates to start which were served with home made bread. (£8.95) We also had fontina filante which is soft Italian cheese wrapped in bread crumbs and served with a pistachio and orange dip. (£6.95)

The meats and cheese were of the highest quality and we washed them down with bottles of Peroni for the three men in the party, white wine for two of us and a Diet Coke for my daughter who was designated driver.

My son’s fiancee and I decided to share a pizza, as did my daughter and her husband leaving just my son and husband to take on a full one each.

The base was light and crisp while all the ingredients which included Pepperoni, Palma ham, anchovies, olives, tomatoes and mozzarella depending on exactly which version you ordered were top notch.

Pizzas range in price from £8.95 to £12.45 and if you do go for the whole one and find it too much the staff are happy to put the remainder in a box to take home.

Our bill came to £45 per couple (including the drinks) which seemed to all of us like good value for a great end to an excellent lantern parade evening. Both the light switch-on and the meal were very Devizes.

The only missing ingredient was of course Gianni but you can be sure he would have been proud to see the smiling faces on the diners and the excellent quality of food going out to the tables in an environment he loved.

Dolcipani is keeping other traditions alive by holding music evenings and in October honoured what would have been Gianni’s birthday 61st birthday by donating money to Dorothy House. Joanne Moore

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