I consider myself something of a pizza aficionado. I’ve tried pizza in Naples, in a small upstairs café on the winding, narrow street where the dish was apparently first invented. I spent a good proportion of my 20s either serving tables or stretching dough and making sauce in various Pizza Huts across Scotland. I’ve had pizza crunch from at least four different Blue Lagoons.

But this summer, the obsession has gone to dark places.

To young children growing up in these times, lockdown must seem perfectly normal. Walking around in masks is just what you do. You’re only supposed to see grandparents every six months, right? And soft play was just a phase we all went through in 2019. It was a bit weird that that we didn’t go to any swing parks for a few weeks, but we’re there all the time now (though why is mum so obsessed with that hand gel stuff?).

Glasgow Times:

Two new habits our daughter has picked up this summer have been particularly worrying us though. First of all, she walks around the house shouting “cheers” with her sippy cup. We’re pretty sure that’s nothing to do with the fact that, as lockdown went on, the bottle of wine was getting opened earlier and earlier every day (thank god they’re now collecting the purple bins).

Secondly, she’s developed this bizarre habit of taking her plate, wandering over to the door, shouting “pizza” and then looking up at me with a puzzled look when nobody responds.

Yes, during those long months in which the nurseries were closed and both her parents worked more than full-time jobs with no childcare, our daughter has apparently decided that food mostly comes from … the front door.

Glasgow Times:

It is really is not much of an exaggeration to say that the good folk at Pastaio’s – a small Italian takeaway on Paisley Road West – have been a big contributor to our family getting through lockdown intact.

They’ve got a wide menu with everything you’d expect – pasta, focaccia, starters, salads (no thanks) – and of course the main event, pizza.

Tonight, we order a 12” pepperoni and bacon number and just a normal-sized portion of curly fries and cheese. “You can’t get a large portion on a Monday night,” my wife says.

The food comes early. The pizza is absolutely delicious, roasting hot and plenty of cheese. It’s not a thin base, but not a deep pan either – somewhere in the middle, so that it’s light but also filling.

The curly fries and cheese are the real star, though. We normally get the cajun flavour, but we had that two days ago(!), so thought we’d try something new. It comes in a packed pizza box (small one) and has plenty of delicious cheese melted over the fries. On balance, we probably prefer the spicy cajun version – so you should try that first instead. But both are awesome.

We’ve never once been disappointed with Pastaio’s. As good as Naples? Better, I’d say…