La Leggenda Pizzeria
Christine Michelle Photography
Napoli-born and raised chef/owner Giovanni Gagliardi, dubbed La Leggenda (the Legend) by friends in Italy for his pizzaiolo skills, is making some of the best Neapolitan-style pies in South Florida. Gagliardi performs his magic in a small space tucked away near the eastern terminus of Española Way, where his domed, wood-fueled oven turns out from-scratch pizzas with crusts that are invariably soft, airy, and perfectly blistered. Don't miss the Margherita STG, made with real-deal mozzarella di bufala campana and fragrant fresh basil. Non-pizza highlights include gnocchi alla sorrentina, an Instagrammable creation that delivers sublimely creamy gnocchi dished up in an edible blistered-dough bowl. Desserts are as good as the pizzas, but good luck deciding between a pistachio-flecked gelato the color of early spring leaves and a cocoa-dusted tower of tiramisu so generous with the mascarpone that it jiggles.
224 Española Way, Miami Beach, 33139