MARINA DEL REY, Calif. -- Pizza is universal. In one form or another, it, or something like it, is made around the world, usually with dough, some type of sauce, and toppings. But there are regional differences, depending on where you order from.

When Chef Marcus moved to the United States from Brazil, he noticed a difference.

"I love everything about the country and the culture, but the pizza wasn’t right," said Chef Marcus.

To him, the pizza wasn’t as good as what he was eating in his home country. Sao Paulo, Brazil has a large number of Italian immigrants who brought their traditional pizza. Brazil took the basic formula and added its own unique twist.

"It's Italian base with thin crust, but Brazilians are very creative. We started making different combinations," said Chef Marcus.

Brazilian pizza is known for having lots of different toppings like corn, chicken, and sausages. All the ingredients at Sampa's Pizza are fresh and all natural.

Having opened two restaurants, Chef Marcus never expected to be where he is today. He wasn’t even a chef originally.

He took pizza classes in Brazil and went to school in Italy to learn. He says he has an innate passion for cooking that comes from his grandmother who is a chef.

"When making pizzas, I realized it was in my DNA," said Chef Marcus.

Chef Marcus went on to win Best Brazilian Pizza Chef in the World at a competition in Italy. He loves what he does and wants to share it with as many as he can, including the Brazilian population, which he says is substantial in Los Angeles. 

"They remember the time in their life with their families. The biggest thing for me is to feed my community," said the chef.

But he says he also wants to make his restaurant a space for all pizza lovers.

"Pizza is pizza. It's pizza all over the world," said Marcus.

Sampa's Pizza

534 Washington Blvd.

Marina Del Rey, CA 90292