A local pizza chef has been named one of the best in the world for his creation of a gluten free pizza with an imaginative topping.

Milford Mercury: Giovanni with his prize-winning pizza

Giovanni Recchia entered the Campionato del Mondo di Pizza, the Pizza World Championships, in Rimini, Italy last month.

The pizza chef, who has his own restaurant near Pembroke Castle came second in the gluten free category, competing against hundreds of other pizza makers.

Milford Mercury: Gio hard at work during the competition.

Giovanni’s prize pizza had to showcase six different consistencies. It consisted of an onion cream base, fior di latte mozzarella, crunchy onion, red onion cooked in beer. With the liquid left over from cooking the onions he created an onion beer gel. He also added onion mayonnaise, burnt onion powder to the pizza.

This is Giovanni’s second taste of success at the world championships. Last year he won the Mystery Box competition, creating a pizza from a box of surprise ingredients.

Milford Mercury: Gio's pizza came second in the gluten-free category.

“I'm happy with the pizza I produced in the championship, I couldn't have done better,” he said of this year’s success.

Milford Mercury: On the winners podium.

Giovanni’s prizewinning pizza will be included in the new launch menu at his restaurant, Gio Recchia Pizza Contemporania, on Westgate Hill, Pembroke, at the end of May.

The newly opened restaurant serves four different types of pizza: pizza on the paddle, a rectangular pizza with a good crunch, a round pizza which has a good crunch on the outside and is soft on the inside; contemporary Neapolitan pizza, and gluten free pizza as well as homemade starters and desserts.

Milford Mercury: Gio's trophies from this year and last year's competition.

“I love to make homemade and use local produce,” said Giovanni. “I prefer to use the meat and cheese from Pembrokeshire and I make the sausage myself.

“To make my dough highly digestible, I use techniques that are normally used in bread making, giving the dough aromas, meltability, and making the final product unique and highly digestible.”

“My mentality is, my pizza- for me it’s amazing, for my customers it’s amazing but my mentality is to test myself,”