Business Profile: Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria

Love, Family And Napoli—Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria

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Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria
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It started as a dream. A dream born of a chance meeting in 1999, between a Navy girl from Kansas and a guy from Seattle at a party on Pinetamare Beach in Naples, Italy. Gabriel Amador and Kimberly Corriston fell in love, married and started a family. Their path together took them from Italy to Albuquerque, but the magic of Naples followed them.

“Kimberly and I realized,” recalls Gabriel, “that the romance and passion of Naples had to play a part in our dream of building something together as a family.”

Their dream came true on July 2, 2013, when Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria opened its doors. Amore is New Mexico’s only handmade, hand-thrown Neapolitan pizzeria.

“Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria is a combination of many things we love,” says Gabriel. “A made-from-scratch, healthier style of pizza, fresh food, Naples, family and our pride in all things local.”

Since that grand opening, Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria has expanded from its original Nob Hill location to Green Jeans Farmery (Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria & Delicatessen), on the corner of I-40 and Carlisle NE.

It has opened a second, more upscale location (Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria & Vino) in the new Country Club Plaza, at 1700 Central NW (between San Pasquale SW and Laguna SW).

While rewarding, the dream took a lot of work. Committed to excellence and authenticity, the Amadors were trained, certified and mentored by Assciazione Pizzaiuoli Napoletani (APN) President, Roberto Caporuscio. An APN certification is the highest certification for Neapolitan pizza chefs and can only be obtained in Naples, Italy and New York City.

Gabriel and Kimberly traveled to NYC to study under the incomparable star chef and owner of the award-winning restaurants Keste Pizza & Vino and Don Antonio by Starita, rated number one and two best NYC pizzerias by Zagat.

Roberto has traveled to Albuquerque twice now, for each of Amore’s openings. He stands shoulder to shoulder with Gabriel, demonstrating traditional pizza making techniques and flavors, sampling homemade mozzarella and supporting the business with pride. Gabriel and Kimberly mean more to the APN president than students. They have proven that the art and sophistication of great Neapolitan pizza can be aligned with strong business management and successfully be shared outside of big urban centers. Amore’s success is making Albuquerque look good.

True to the dream, family stands front and center at Amore. You will find Rhonda Amador, Gabriel’s mother, working carefully on the Italian wine selection, taking orders and helping with business administration. Kimberly had a big hand in the design elements that have made the restaurant locations so unique and she still plays a big role in cooking and prep.

Gabriel and Kimberly’s two boys, when they’re not in school, both help with tasks around the restaurants. Gabriel’s sister has also been known to pitch in on an evening or two, and his father has smoked their house-made mozzarella for specials. Gabriel can be found at the ovens or helping customers from both sides of the counter.

Amore’s quick rise to the top of the culinary mountain in Albuquerque is powered by the family’s commitment to fresh, locally sourced, handmade dishes. Amore uses the highest quality local and organic ingredients for their food. Their attention to detail inspires every dish. All of the dough, sauces, bread and mozzarella at both locations are made fresh, daily and on-site.

The traditional pizza ovens were custom made for Amore; handcrafted with mud, ash and clay from Mount Vesuvius, then shipped from Naples, Italy to Albuquerque. The ovens, (lovingly named “Gina” and “Claudia”) fire genuine Neapolitan dough, hand-formed and cooked in 60-90 seconds at 485 °C (905 °F).

To be APN certified, Amore must import their flour and tomatoes from Italy. Some of their delicatessen meats and cheeses, as well as their wines, are also imported. All else, when possible, is brought to the table from local farms.

Amore’s localism mission goes beyond the kitchen. A year-round 10 percent discount is extended to all active military; students (with ID); educators (with ID); law enforcement and firefighters.

As Amore enters a new phase with two locations, the dream lives on. The family, and all involved with the restaurants, work hard, play hard and stick together as they grow the business — it’s Amore.
Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria

Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria

Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria

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