Last summer, the restaurant-shaped sledgehammer that Covid has been wildly swinging around finally hit Forza Win, forcing it to close.
There was much wailing, gnashing of teeth, and posting of sad emojis. But all is not lost. Because the team behind Frank’s Rooftop Cafe (easily one of London’s best & most iconic high-altitude alco-spots) has taken over the large Peckham space, and promises to turn it into something just as grand, and dare we say, maybe even grander.
Mike’s is due to cut the ribbon in April, and is going to be a pizza joint. And what kind of pizza will they be serving? Well, that’s the exciting part. You see, they’ve secured the talents of one Gabriele Bonci, who is known as “the Michelangelo of pizza” in his native Italy and indeed across the world.
He’s one of those obsessive, creative, hyper-meticulous chefs who makes everyone else look like an apathetic layabout. His flour is a proprietary blend, stone-milled in Piedmont. His various sourdough starters date back as far as World War 1. His dough rises for 72 hours, and has light bubbles punctuating a satisfyingly firm base. He’s amassed a cult following in Rome (where his original pizzeria is), along with regular TV appearances and profiles in Magazines like Vogue. He’s a legend in his own lifetime.
At Mike’s he’s aiming for a similar Roman vibe, and they say that “The ultimate goal for us is a very crispy base and a bubble heavy pillowy top. Slowly fermented and delicately shaped, twice baked. It’s a labour of love, but there are certainly worse jobs.” And as for the toppings? Well, they’re proudly slapping on anything they damn well please. “Who says what should or shouldn’t be on a pizza?” They reasonably ask, before giving a lot of big talk about “Turkish figs, Peaches from the South of France, Sicilian datterini tomatoes, aged sheep cheese from the Basque Country and nduja made from dry aged native breed pork and scotch bonnets”. Pure, glorious anarchy.
And as for the space itself, well, anyone familiar with Forza will already know that it’s going to be huge, airy, and open. An April launch also means plenty of outdoor space, with both a covered & heated terrace, and an open-air garden. And you can get your pizza delivered, to boot.
April can’t come soon enough.
NOTE: Mike’s Peckham is due to open on April 13th. Bookings are now live for Brunch, lunch and dinner. You can find out more on their website right HERE.
Mike’s Peckham | Unit 4.1 Copeland Park, 133 Copeland Road, SE15 3SN