Pizzeria Il Tamburello
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The first thought that strikes on visiting Pizzeria Il Tamburello is that Tokyo really needs more restaurants like this. By any standards, it's an intimate location: there can't be space for more than about 20 people, spread between a handful of tables and a small counter next to the kitchen (the oven, incidentally, is exactly where it should be: at the front of the shop and clearly visible from the street). Unlike most of the other pizza shops around town, the vintage atmosphere here isn't an affectation: Il Tamburello's building has been standing for over half a century now, which is a couple of lifetimes in Tokyo terms, and still retains the lofty ceilings from its previous incarnation as a neighbourhood pharmacy. Owner Yoshihisa Otsubo – who cut his teeth working in kitchens in southern Italy – says he chose the location for its European flavour, and it's got personality in spades. The atmosphere is best appreciated in the evenings, when the kitchen serves its pizzas – on the salty side, with light, chewy end crusts – at the full, regulation-issue Neapolitan size. However, budget-minded diners might prefer to go at lunch, when ¥1,000 gets you a choice of pizza (slightly smaller than at dinner), plus salad or soup and dessert.
1-2-9 Nihonbashi-Horidomecho, Chuo-ku
|Transport:||Kodenmacho Station (Hibiya line), exit 3; Ningyocho Station (Hibiya, Asakusa lines), exit A5|
|Opening hours:||Lunch 11.30am-2pm Tue-Sat, dinner 5pm-11pm Mon-Sat / closed Sun|