Razzo’s brick-oven pizza, gelato will transport you from Yokohama to Italy
Stars and Stripes April 6, 2023
Tucked away in a back corner of Yokohama’s bustling Motomachi district is a quaint Italian restaurant that specializes in brick-oven pizzas and rich gelato.
Reservations are the best course of action at Pizzeria Gelateria Razzo. The staff doesn’t speak much English, but they’re incredibly patient and listened while I stumbled through a phone call with my Google-translated Japanese. You can also make a reservation online or go in person and spend your waiting time shopping at the many stores in Motomachi.
Razzo has a large English menu. There is something for everyone, even those with dietary restrictions. The various starters, pastas and pizzas work for vegetarian, pescatarian and even dairy-free diets.
My family of four ordered a small feast of fritto misto, salad with buffalo mozzarella and anchovy, homemade pork sausage, linguine with seafood and maiale pizza.
Even though the prices at first seem prohibitive – the linguine with seafood is 2,250 yen, or about $17 – each dish comes with a large quantity of food. They’re meant to share, family-style. From the copious portions to the football jersey on the wall and the Sophia Loren posters in the bathroom, you’ll feel as though you’re on an Italian holiday.
Fritto misto is one of our favorites. The Sicilian starter comes with a pile of fried arancini that contains small amounts of ground beef and either a mozzarella or tomato-sauce base. The plate also includes olives, breaded and fried. Fried olives may seem like an odd choice, but they’re crispy, salty and delicious.
The brick-oven pizza for which Razzo is most known has a delightfully thin and chewy texture. The crust is charred without tasting burnt, and the pork on the pizza di maiale is well-cooked and tender.
I was anxious about eating the anchovy salad because I could see tiny bones protruding from the fish. However, the anchovies were soft and lent a salty and savory flavor to the lightly dressed lettuce and creamy buffalo mozzarella. The two adults in our group finished the salad quickly.
My children were big fans of Razzo’s pork sausage. The links were large, lightly spiced and pan-fried to a caramelized brown.
Even though the restaurant is best known for its pizza, the pasta is equally great. The linguine with seafood arrived perfectly al dente, and the tomato sauce tasted fresh and complex at the same time.
At the end of the meal, we attempted to order gelato. The wait staff stopped us and instead brought out four free small servings of gelato: two scoops of vanilla and two scoops of mango.
Although the gelato servings were small, they were rich and smooth – the sweetest way to end a delicious meal. I highly recommend taking a leisurely passeggiata, or stroll, afterward to the Yamate Italian Garden around the corner and up the road.
Pizzeria Gelateria Razzo
Location: 1-22-6 Ishikawacho, Naka-ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture A&E Residence Yokohama Ishikawacho 1F
Hours: Open for lunch and dinner Wednesday through Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., Tuesday for dinner only from 5:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Closed on Japanese holidays.
Prices: Pizzas range from 920 to 2,090 yen. Pasta ranges from 1,140 to 2,910 and can be ordered in a larger size. Gelato is 460 yen for one scoop and 570 yen for two.
Directions: A 2-minute walk from the Motomachi Exit of Ishikawacho Station or a little over an hour drive from Camp Zama’s main gate with coin parking nearby.
Information: 050-5487-8954; Online: r.gnavi.co.jp/hn050ref0000