100 Very Best Restaurant 2016: Inferno Pizzeria Napoletana

Photograph by Scott Suchman.

What’s a three-star chef doing running a pizza joint in a Gaithersburg shopping plaza? Having a blast. Tony Conte may have abandoned his post at the Oval Room, but he hasn’t ditched his commitment to top-quality ingredients, nor has he tossed aside his essential approach, which is to create intricate dishes of varying textures and popping flavors. His sunchoke appetizer is deserving of white-glove presentation—the vegetables roasted until they take on the softness of baked potatoes, then hit with Parmesan sauce and toasted hazelnuts. He brings this same care to his thin-crust pizzas. A version with soft egg and truffles is both indulgent and made for quick devouring.

Don’t miss: burrata; Margherita pizza; cherry-tomato pizza; prosciutto-and-arugula pizza; vanilla custard with stewed apples.

See what other restaurants made our 100 Very Best Restaurants list. This article appears in our February 2016 issue of Washingtonian.

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.

Anna Spiegel
Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.