Considering that real Neapolitan pizza is such an important source of pride and income among certain Italians, it’s probably not all that surprising that the Italian government has enacted laws to protect it. Which is to say, just like the French designate what is and what is not authentic French vino with their Appellation d’Origine Controlée (A.O.C.) system, the Italians designate what is and is not authentic Neapolitan pizza with their D.O.C., or Denominazione Di Orgine Controllata system (they use it for their wine of course, too). The D.O.C. designation codifies pretty much every aspect of Neapolitan pizza, from ingredients to dimensions to toppings to the oven temperature it’s baked at. Anything that veers, however slightly, from the official government code cannot legally be called Neapolitan pizza in Italy.
Seems a bit strange to us as Americans where pretty much anything goes with (and on) pizza, but then those continentals like things pretty zipped up where their cultural heritage is concerned. If you want to learn how to make real Neapolitan pizza so you can sport the official D.O.C. emblem on your restaurant door (or kitchen door for that matter), there’s an international trade organization called Verace Pizza Napoletana (Italian for “Authentic Neapolitan Pizza”) that will teach you how to do it. For more information on them, visit here.