Inferno is the best Maryland Pizza Restaurant! This suburban Maryland restaurant in a strip mall in Darnestown, is recognized as one of the top 101 Pizza Restaurants in Maryland. The Daily Meal, a fine dining website, ranked the 101 Best Pizza Restaurants in America for 2017 and named our local favorite to that list.
The Daily Meal used judges from around the country to rank pizzas. New York had 35 of the rankings. Illinois was second with 12, followed by California.
It is easy to see why Inferno found a place on the 101 Best Pizza list. The seasonal appetizers include options like an autumn vegetable salad with toasted pumpkin seeds and gold ginger apples or burrata with green tomato marmalade and miso mustard. You might want to try the Mushroom Bolognese pizza or the Ember Roasted Potato with roasted onions and smoked mozzarella.
The chef-owner Tony Conte has an impressive culinary background. He was the executive chef at Washington’s accredited multi-starred Oval Room, and the executive sous chef at the acclaimed Jean Georges in New York. Now he is celebrating pizzas at Inferno Pizzeria Napoletana with an exceptional artisanal approach. Bringing fine-dining standards of downtown Washington to his casual 39-seat pizzeria in Darnestown, Conte keeps the menu strictly seasonal and based on the local agriculture of neighboring Frederick County. Even the decor is a step up from the usual suburban pizza joints. A custom-tiled wood-burning oven, handcrafted pottery dishware, and interior surfaces of reclaimed oak and walnut carry Inferno’s artisanal touch beyond the menu and into its comfortable home-town atmosphere.
Conte lives in Gaithersburg, Maryland, so it is a natural that he is bringing authentic Naples pizza to his community. He is sharing his family’s background and culture with Darnestown! Conte’s father and grandparents emigrated from a small town near Naples. He says that his life at home as a child revolved around Old World cooking traditions.
As the Washingtonian Magazine said in 2016, “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.”
Bethesda Magazine in January 2017 said, “Don’t let the suburban shopping strip fool you. Inferno Pizzeria Napoletana, which opened in October 2015, has a decidedly downtown sensibility. Owner Tony Conte, former executive chef at the Oval Room in D.C., graces his thin, blistered Neapolitan pies with non pedestrian toppings such as garlic confit and n’duja.”
If you are looking for the best Maryland pizza restaurant, you need to try Inferno . Some other pizza restaurants that I love include Iggy’s in Baltimore, the Mussel Bar in Bethesda, and Two Amys in North West Washington. What are your favorites?