Archive for March, 2013

Michael Shepherd World Pizza Champion

Michael Shepherd is an interesting pizzaiolo.

As he explains on his website:

From humble beginnings as a delivery driver for a national chain to the owner of three independent pizzerias, he has over 20 years of experience in the pizza business. Growing his original pizzeria from a meager $2,000 per week to over $1 million dollars a year in sales in a town of only 8,000 and opening his newest pizzeria at the $1.2 million sales mark in a town of 13,000 with an advertising budget of nearly zero.

 

I interviewed Michael at the International Pizza Expo. He was getting ready to set up all of the games. He was busy with these tasks the entire Pizza Expo.

Michael Angelo Pizza

Michael Angelo Pizza

 

Michael is the owner of Michael Angelo’s, and is a founding member of the World Pizza Champions. He recently started a new pizza restaurant called 600 Downtown.

600 Hundred

600 Hundred

 

Michael explained all the preparation needed for the World Pizza Games. He also spoke on several on several panels.

This is a great interview with one of the greatest World Pizza Champs.

 

Make sure you check out Michael’s new book:
Growing Pizza: How to Plant the Seeds to a Successful Pizzeria

Antimo Caputo and Albert Grande

Antimo Caputo and Albert Grande

I had the honor of meeting Antimo Caputo at the International Pizza Expo, in Las Vegas.
As soon as we started to talk I knew I had to interview him. The company brought a number of master pizzailo from Italy. For the 3 days of the Pizza Expo, these master pizza makers made pizza after pizza. Each pizza was lovingly crafted by hand and made with Caputo Flour. This comapny was so serious about making amazing pizza they brought over a special Caputo oven.

His family has been in the flour business for several generations. Antimo explained that his pizza is known all over the world due to the fact they are specialists. Caputpo is used by the best pizzerias in the world due to the quality of the flour. He stated that Caputo only uses the best Italian and European wheat. This gives a very good taste to the pizza. Pizza can be very simple but with great ingredients and great flour, you get great pizza.

Antimo contends “the secret is in the philosophy, the secret is in the simplicity.” That is the real secret to incredible pizza flour.

Antimo was adamant that the wheat used and the grinding method is what made Caputo so special. There is a slow grinding process that does not damage the protein in the wheat. The best whaet possible is what continues to make the flour so special.”

You can purchase Antimo Caputo Pizzeria Flour, 55 Pound, by clicking on the link.

 

You can listen to this interview (or download it if you wish) click below:

Antimo Caputo Interview by Legends of Pizza

 

Discover Antimo Caputo “00” Chefs Flour 1 Kilo (2.2lb) Bags Pack of 4

For more reviews of Caputo Flour Click HERE, Pizza Therapy Reviews Caputo Flour.

In Las Vegas for Pizza Expo

International Pizza Expo 2013

International Pizza Expo 2013

Coming to Las Vegas for the Pizza Expo, brings back wonderful memories. The pizza, the products, and the people. There are some fascinating people here. The Pizza Expo is a wonderful celebration about pizza and the pizza business. While there are a number of workshop and events, there are also hands on pizza tasting, pizza making, pizza judging and pizza tossing. Make no mistake, Pizza Expo is aimed at the pizza professional.

Estimates are of crowds of over 7,000 attendees. The gathering is made up of pizza pros and those who support the professional pizza business. There are different types of flour, pizza ovens, all manner of pizza toppings, cheeses, pizza hardware and pizza software. If it is pizza business related, even remotely, you will find that item or service at the pizza Expo. From various bakeware,  to pizza ovens,  kitchen magnets, and pizza peppers.if you want it, you got it.

One of the very coolest additions to this years Pizza  Expo is the official International Pizza App. You can find out more about it at the official Pizza Expo Website.

Last time I was here I got to meet some amazing pizzaiolo. The Italian Crew was a personal high-light. This was an amazing crew of some the best pizza makers on the planet. They were sharing there wisdom, their expertise and their energy.

I learned some great dough techniques during my last visit. I discovered the gentle, yet firm touch of the master pizza maker. He was able to shape the dough into finished pizza shape with a few slaps and pulls.

Yes there were some dangerous pizza creatures:

For me the best part of the whole experience are the stories and tales about pizza and those who lovingly make pizza. Meeting Jonathan Goldsmith of Spaca Napoli was one of the most rewarding experiences. Jonathan is not only a gentle pizza spirit who is truly honored when you eat his pizza, but also a social activist, who creates significant change through his business.

Roberto Caporuscio of Keste Pizza and Vino in New York was there. He gave a lot of positive energy to the pizza making crew from Naples. As a matter of fact some of the pizza masters from Naples showed Roberto how to make pizza!

And what can I say about spending time with John Arena. John and his Cousin Sam founded Metro Pizza in Las Vegas. (FYI: you can see a video tribute I did for Metro Pizza, here.)

John is a pizza master who has taken it upon himself to be a pizza advocate to spread the joys, wisdom and enlightenment of making pizza. And yes I did say enlightenment. Making pizza is truly a spiritual experience.

John Arena, discusses pizza

John Arena, discusses pizza

I hope to keep you, updated on all the latest info of the 2013 International Pizza Expo

So stay tuned….

Whenever I leave Hawaii, (and of course return) there is only one airlines I use, and that’s Hawaiian Airlines. You can find out more about Hawaiian Airlines CLICK HERE.

Check out amazon for all of your on-line and offline needs.

Domenico Crolla, Master Pizzaiolo

Domenico Crolla is an amazing pizzaiolo. He has even made pizza for the pope!
In this video my friend Domenico shows the result of making pizza tributes.

The process is a long and arduous one.

He uses no computer generated image producing program and does all of this free hand.

Here are some of Domenico’s accomplishments:

Italian Chef Wars 2007, Las Vegas

International Pizza Challenge 2007, Las Vegas

UK Pizza Designer 2006, 2008, 2009

UK Gold Award for best Pizzeria UK 2008, 2009, 2010 & 2012

UK Gold Award best Italian Restaurant UK 2007,2008

Head Judge at PizzaExpo, Las Vegas 2008,2009, 2010, 2011

UK judge at Italy’s Campionato Mondiale della Pizza 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011

Chef to Pope Benedict XV1 during his visit to Glasgow in 2010

‘Birra Moretti’ Champion Pizza Chef 2010

World’s most expensive pizza record holder with Pizza Royale 007

Recipient of the 2011 ‘Italian Cuisine Worldwide Awards’.

Certified as Italian Cuisine Master Chef (ICMC) ad honorem by Accademia
Barilla, Parma

Winner of the 2011 International ‘Kitchen Clash’ contest

Recipient of Marchio Ospitalita Italian 2012 from the Italian Chambre of
commerce!

Domenico and Todd English

Domenico Crolla and Todd English

Thanks Domenico!