At Seirinkan in Tokyo, you'll find carefully crafted pizzas delicious enough to rival Naples top pies.
Seirinkan means "house of sacred wood" in Japanese and it's obvious from the beautifully blistered crusts on these pies that the wood oven is at the heart of the restaurant's success. The oven stays hot enough that it can cook a single, thin-crusted pie in just under a minute.
Owner Susumu Kakinuma is no stranger to the Tokyo food scene. His first restaurant Savoy was a hit before he closed it in 1995 to pursue pizza.
Kakinuma traveled extensively in Naples, sampling the best pizzas at the source. You can certainly tell from the pleasantly chewy crust, fresh ingredients and oodles of olive oil that make each pie a memorable experience.
But while the pizzas are inspired by Naples, Kakinuma insists that his pizzas are uniquely Japanese. "What's wonderful about pizza is that it really is a bit like sushi," he told Eater. "You don't touch the base ingredients. Your goal is to pull the richest inherent flavor from the ingredients at hand."
There are only two pizzas on the menu: margherita and marinara. And it’s stayed that way for the 22 years that Seirinkan has been welcoming hungry tourists. Tucked away on the south side of Nakameguro Station, away from crowds and high-rise towers, it might just be the most peaceful place in Tokyo to enjoy your pizza.