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Pizza Games 2014 at Pizza Expo, Let’s Party!

Everyone is getting ready for the World Pizza Games at Pizza Expo….

2014 Schedule of Events:
The Daily Schedule of Events
Tentative Schedule – it may change

Tuesday, March 25th
10:45am: Fastest Dough Trials
11:45am: Fastest Dough Finals
12:00pm: First Division Acrobatic
2:00pm: First Division Acrobatic Finalists Announced
2:15pm: Fastest Box Folding
2:45pm: Fastest Box Folding Finals

Wednesday, March 26th
10:30am: Pizza Triathlon Trials
11:15am: Pizza Triathlon Finals
11:30am: Largest Dough Trials
3:00pm: Largest Dough Finals
6:30pm: World Pizza Games Rocking Finals Party!

For more information, go to:

Pizza Expo at http://pizzaexpo.com

Video sponsored by Pizza Therapy http://pizzatherapy.com
and Hawaii Business Videos http://hawaiibusinessvideos.com

Here is the latest on the world Pizza Games coming up to Pizza Expo. This will be a wonderful event!

If you at all interested in the Pizza Business, this is an event you should attend. You will be able to meet incredible pizza masters and other experts in the Pizza Business. If you are on the fence about
Tuesday, March 25th, 2014
10:45am: Fastest Dough Trials
11:45am: Fastest Dough Finals
12:00pm: First Division Acrobatic
2:00pm: First Division Acrobatic Finalists Announced
2:15pm: Fastest Box Folding
2:45pm: Fastest Box Folding Finals

Wednesday, March 26th
10:30am: Pizza Triathlon Trials
11:15am: Pizza Triathlon Finals
11:30am: Largest Dough Trials
3:00pm: Largest Dough Finals
6:30pm: World Pizza Games Rocking Finals Party!

La Strada Pizza on Pizza, Secrets, Best Pizza Places

lastradalogo

La Strada Pizza logo

Here is an interview I did recently with Nick Schneider, owner of La Strada, Pizza in Matunuck Rhode Island.
The pizza was excellent. A thin crust with lots of taste. We were all impressed. I had to ask him
what were his secrets. How did he learn to make pizza?

Nick gave me more than I asked for. He was honest and forthcoming…
and don’t even call him a pizzaiolo…he’s a pizza guy!

Albert: Nick, tell me how you got into the pizza business?

Nick: I got into the pizza business through my father Paul.
He’s been making pizza for over 50 years now. He opened his first place in his late teens
in Provincetown, Massachusetts called Spiritus Pizza, which is still there.

Paul, my father and John Yingling, (Jingles) opened Spiritus together. So it’s been around a long time,
then he opened a bunch of other places. He is one of the original East Coast, New York Pizza Guys.
I’m not saying that because he is my father but Paul Schneider is one of the original old school guys
and a lot of people have learned from him and used his recipe and are kind of pushing on.
He’s still around and that’s
where I got all of my pizza stuff from.

He’s an artist and sculptor and a cook and a really interesting guy. That’s where my pizza
comes from and where my esthetic comes from.

Albert: Is he still making pizza?

Nick: Oh yeah, he’s go a great place in a very unassuming spot,
in Ellsworth, Maine called, Finelli’s Pizza.

People are walking in there all the time with their chest out, saying I’m from New York, I’m from New Haven
and we know pizza. We’ve heard all about this place. And once they have the pizza, they become believers.
And he’s still there in Ellsworth, Maine and he’s still doing it. He makes the best pizza I’ve ever had! Ever!
Way better than mine.
Yeah, the best.

nickoven

La Strada Pizza Oven

Albert: So you learned to make pizza side by side with your Dad.
He took you by the hand and showed you how to make pizza.

Nick: I remember sleeping on flour bags as a kid. I’d always stay there because there was a
rush (of customers)
and he would work really late, and I was a kid and I would stay in the pizza shop…
lastradapizza

Albert: Do you make your dough the day before?

Nick: I make my dough a couple of days before. I at least make it a day before, I like to make it a couple of days
before…Depends on how busy we are.

Albert: So you use a cold ferment method, as opposed to a warm ferment?

Nick: Both actually. I use a warm (proof) ferment, then a cold ferment and then a warm ferment.

Albert: So you think that is the secret to great pizza?

Nick: It’s not a secret anymore, cause you just screwed it up for for me. It was a secret!

You know when you came in here you asked me if I was a pizzaiolo, and I said no, I’m the pizza guy.
My dad’s a pizza guy, he’s not a pizzaiolo either. That stuff I think a lot
of this stuff and secrets that is out on the Internet now,like the DOC stuff is coming from these certifications.
There is a school that says you have to use this flour, you have to use this method, you have to use this water.
You have to do this and you have to do that.

I don’t think that is the case. I’m not a Prima Dona I don’t know anything about anything.
You just got to do what you
do and love it and that’s it.

And the most important thing I believe is the way the dough is handled.
My father calls this dough management.
The way the dough is handled, when it comes out, how long it is sitting around for before
it goes into the oven.
And of course the temperature of
the oven.

Your oven’s got to be hot, hot hot!

And that’s it…

Nick of La Stada and  Albert of Pizza Therapy

Nick of La Stada and Albert of Pizza Therapy

This “your oven’s got to be made here by this guy, who is from this part of Naples, and using this flour,
that’s all”
a little to much, … I’m in Matunuck Rhode Island. I’m not brining in the water from New York. I don’t bring in any crazy stuff.
I just do it the way I was taught, which is the way my dad taught me. And it seems to work for us…

Here is the interview on You Tube:

You can watch the rest of this interview here. You can also listen if you wish and download for later listening….


Find La Strada, here:
La Strada
920 Matunuck Beach Road
Wakefield, RI 02879
Shop: 401.284.2253 Mobile: 401.533.2019

International Pizza Expo 2014

International Pizza Expo, March 24-27, 2014.
The Pizza Expo will be held at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

 

 

The 3-day registration package includes the following:

  • Admission to your choice of more than 80 education seminars and cooking demonstrations, special Monday sessions for New Operators and Early-Arriving Attendees, Pizza Crust Boot Camp™, two keynote speaker general sessions (Donatella Arpaia and The Pizza Cuz, Sal Basile and Francis Garcia), two Beer & Bull Idea Exchanges® and the World Pizza Games® Finals and 30th Birthday Bash. (An additional fee is required for the Sunday-Monday Advanced-Track Workshops.)
  • Admission to three exciting days of pizza-only exhibits at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Exhibits are open Tuesday and Wednesday (10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.) and Thursday (10 a.m. – 3 p.m.).
  • Watch the world’s most prestigious pizza-making contests. The International Pizza Challenge™ will crown the best pizzas in five categories: Traditional, Non-Traditional, American-Pan, Italian-Style and Gluten-Free. There will also be a “Best of the Best” bake-off featuring Pizza Maker of the Year honorees from past Expos.
  • An evening at the World Pizza Games® Finals and 30th Birthday Bash featuring dough-spinning acrobatics, onstage entertainment, free food and drink, prizes and more.
  • The opportunity to win big cash in our $20,000 MEGA BUCKS Giveaway™.
  • Discounts on air travel and rental cars.
  • Special discounted hotel room rates with complimentary shuttle service from selected hotels.

Here is the website to register:

International Pizza Expo.

Pizza Expo, Las Vegas Pizza Expo

The International Pzza Expo, held in Las Vegas each year is a showcase of pizza products and distributors. More importantly it draws some of the best pizza makers in the planet at one time in one place.

The list of amazing Pizza Makers is a veritable who’s who in the world of pizza. You can find Tony Gemignani, Domenico Crolla, Roberto Corporuscio, and Don Antonio Starita. The fact that you can meet and chat with these legends of pizza is truly extraordinary. Each was very approachable and willing to share pizza secrets as well as thoughts on the pizza business.

This video captures some of these moments as it unfolded. I chose to use the slideshow technique to give a feel, taste and smell so you can bombard your senses and feel the moment.

This video was shot on the last day of the Expo. Pizza was being made everywhere. The tastes of these pizzas were as varied as the pizza masters themselves.

You can see more Pizza Expo Videos, here.

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Antimo Caputo, The Philosophy of Pizza

Antimo Caputo comes from a long line of  pizza flour makers. Antimo Caputo Pizzeria Flour is used by the finest pizza makers in the world.

He supports the concept that making pizza is truly an art form.

“Pizza is not just a plate”” he explains, rather “pizza is a expression of cultural philosophy. The pizza maker is an artist….The pizzaiolo is an ambassador of pizza.”

Pizza is a story as well he suggests. Antimo wants to share the joy of making pizza with the rest of the world.

Caputo

 

In the following interview Antimo discusses  his love of pizza and why he brought the most amazing pizzaioli in the world to Pizza Expo….

 

 


For a long time the only way to purchase Caputo flour was through a food distributor. Now you can get it by clicking on the link: Antimo Caputo Pizzeria Flour, 55 Pound

 

The Super Peel Interview, Part 2

This is part 2 of an interview, I did with Gary Casper, creator of the Super Peel:

Here is Part 1 of the Super Peel Interview. Part 2 follows:

Albert: You sell the on Amazon How did you get Amazon to sell the Super Peel for you?

Gary:
That is an interesting question. Several years back, Amazon   opened up its site to products other than used books and CDs. This was a game changer for
me and others with their own products to sell – Amazon exposure, WOW!! Initially, we packed and shipped everything in house, but have gradually
migrated most of this over to Fulfillment by Amazon. Product is shipped to Amazon’s warehouses and they take it from there right through customer
service. Using Fulfillment by Amazon carries with it the free Amazon Prime shipping offer. Of course, someone actually does have to pay for the
shipping until UPS and the Post Office offers to deliver for free. There are more fees for this service, but you get actual shipping prices that are
ridiculously low compared to what one could get themselves. So it averages out, and so far Amazon has been good for the product.

Albert: Is the Super Peel used by commercial bakers? Or is just used by home bakers?

Gary: From the very beginning there was some interest from commercial bakers and pizza shops, but it really has been a home use type of product. We continue
to sell some to restaurants, pizzerias and bakeries, but these are generally small and/or specialized. Last year I spent a large chunk of time designing
and building a large prototype that would work with a particular commercial oven brand. It was an interesting project, but it did not end up going
anywhere. On a related note, Eric Kastel from the CIA tells his bread baking students to get a Super Peel as part of their home baking arsenal
when they leave. It is the best tool to simulate the oven loaders that they have been using in class. In the end, the Super Peel is and has mostly been
a tool for home users.

Albert: How did you come up with the design for a long handled Super Peel?

Gary: The design for the long handled Super Peel has been in the works for some time. Over the past several years, I have sent out maybe a dozen of various
prototypes to customers who wanted a longer handle, mostly for their WFOs. Early users have been very happy with it. Having one for my own use has
converted me, even for indoor oven use. There is just something very cool about having the extra reach. So, the design has been sort of shape
shifting, but has been getting more refined.

Albert: We understand you will be working with the Fire With In as well as Forno Bravo. How did that come about?

Gary: Hooking up with The Fire Within group was a bit of serendipity. Jim, who works with them and also operates one of their WFO “pizza wagons”, just
happened to receive a Super Peel from Florida from his Mom’s estate. He had never seen one before, but was struggling a bit with loading pies into his
WFO. He tried it out and was totally hooked. Turns out that he lives in my home town, just 20 miles from where I am located. We got together and I
set him up with a few more of the standard Super Peels. I actually had a chance to see his WFO pizza wagon in operation a few weeks back at local
farmers market. It is a winner for sure! I was there only 2 hours and I bet he made and sold 200 pies. People could not walk past without stopping,
gawking, shooting video, etc., and even buying a pie or two!

The connection with The Fire Within has only been through Jim so far, and I am not entirely sure where it is going. We will have about a dozen
preproduction units in a few weeks and, hopefully we will be able to equip their cart packages with both standard and long handled Super Peels.
Pairing the Super Peel with the traveling WFO does make a lot sense, as many people starting one of these operations have never made a pizza before. The
Super Peel makes prep and loading of their pies so much easier. And, as I mentioned earlier, using less bench flour can really improve the results.

Albert: Do you have any advice for someone that wants to create a new product?

Gary: I would strongly recommend that they start with a concept that fits their knowledge base and is relatively simple, ideally being a product that they
could actually make and sell themselves in order to test market and develop some sales data. Even if they wish to license the idea to another company,
sales data speaks way more loudly than just optimistic words like “everyone will want one of these”. And, a good licensing deal with a good company can
be hard to get. Even with luck finding a willing and able licensee, they need to keep performance requirements and minimum royalties in any contract.

What seemed like a good deal can sour easily for any of many reasons, and they will want the rights to their invention to come back to them in any
case of non-performance by the licensee. As was the case with the Super Peel, they might then still be able to bootstrap a business of their own
around it. I never did make many Super Peels personally – maybe 25 or so. I am sure they will be worth millions down the road, so if you have one hang
on to it!! The best way to get going is to get some sales data to prove the need and pricing, and then work with contractors to make the widget or at
least the parts.

The most important thing, above all, is to persevere! Once they have some “real data” to absolutely know that their idea has good potential, they need
to go at it like a shark on a seal, and drive through all of the many setbacks that will inevitably come along. At the same time, they need to
pay real attention to any show stoppers that might crop up and be ready to
let it all go if that time comes.\

Albert: What has been the hardest thing for you in developing the Super Peel?

Gary: Development was never a hard problem, though redesigning to reach a product that would be of high quality and could be sold at an acceptable price was
challenging. I always continue to look at other products, new materials and manufacturing technology to see if there are improvements that can be made.
Even looking back through old stuff can be helpful.

Case in point, we will be launching a new version – the Super Peel Pro, in October this year. It is
available in limited quantities on Amazon right now, but I just contracted for the first real production run. It will be made of the same resin/fiber composite board that goes by the name “Richite”, sold under the Epicurean brand. In many ways it is a better material for the product than wood, but
it was way too pricey when I first looked at it over 10 years ago. Manufacturing costs have shifted enough that it has now reached relative
parity with wood. We will keep the wooden peels, but I expect that many will prefer the composite for its low maintenance.

Albert: Part of your marketing strategy has always been to give back to
the community. (And yes I think you’ve gotten Pizza Therapy involved more than once..)

How does that fit in with your mission statement of your company? Has giving back to the community helped your business?

Gary: Giving back and paying it forward are two things that I strongly believe in. I can’t say that charitable giving has helped the business directly, at
least not to my knowledge, but it is something that I am committed to.

I strongly believe that all of our kids need every chance that they can get to succeed in life. I donate to local children’s charities and have for years given talks to grade school kids on inventing and being an inventor. I love to see how amazing their problem solving is at an early age, and want them all to know that this is something that they also can do. People usually refer to thinking inside of or outside of the box. Young children tend to think without consideration of any box at all. And, who knows where the next great product idea or company will come from?

Albert: What else is new with the Super Peel?

Gary: As usual Albert, I have probably ranted on a bit long already, and have covered a lot of this question already. I can only add that I do have many
product ideas in various stages of development. Some are just simple existing products that make sense to brand and sell under our company name.
Others are totally new products. And then, there is the next generation Super Peel – the final frontier!, which is always in the works. This last one must remain a secret for now, but stay tuned!!

Claim your EXO Super Peel Gift Set – Our Best Hard Maple Peel With Extra Transfer Cloth and Printed Storage Bag
It makes a great gift for any pizza fan!.

Tony Gemignani Interview at Pizza Expo

Tony Gemignani at Pizza Expo

Tony Gemignani at Pizza Expo

 

Tony's Pizza Napoletana

Tony’s Pizza Napoletana

Tony Gemignani, always has something going on. I got a chance to chat with him recently.
We talked all about pizza….

Tony discusses his latest concept for pizza called Capo’s.  This is a Chicago styled pizzaeria based on the prohibition era.
They specialize in deep dish Chicago pizza and have a whiskey bar as well as many different Chicago style Italian dishes.Tony explains when you look at the pizza industry, Chicago is making a new wave.

Tony’s got a new book coming out next year. He’s opening two new restaurants, one in California and one in Las Vegas.
Both restaurants will be opening at the end of the year. He’s also doing something pizza related for Hollywood.

Yeah you heard that right, Hollywood!

This guys got a lot on his plate! How does he have time for all of these projects.  How does he do it, I just had to know.

“I barely sleep, I just love it”, he stated sheepishly. “I always thought the independent operator could make a statement in this industry, and we are…”

I wanted to know if he still keeps making pizza. I mean how does he have time for all of his projects and still be a hands-on pizza operator.

“When you come to Tony’s (Tony’s Pizza Napoleletana) you’ll see me behind the line. There are a few things we introduced to Tony’s. I think I said a few years ago Detroit was going to make a big impact. I brought that to the Tony’s menu, Detroit style, about a year and a half ago. That style is one of the hottest styles on the Expo floor.A few years ago it didn’t exist.
Last year a guy won best pizza in the world. Now everyone is talking Detroit.So we’ve introduced a couple of styles: St. Louis and Detroit. Places that most people don’t think existwhen it comes to pizza, but, if you do it right, it can be pretty awesome.
So we launched that about a year and a half ago.

That’s been a big part of the program at Tony’s because we have every style.
It’s crazy to go to Tony’s now and get 11 styles of pizza…”

Tony Gemignani

Tony’s Back

Here’s a video interview. I recorded of Tony at Pizza Expo. Tony was very honest and forthcoming in his responses.

Tony was a super star at Expo. Everyone wanted to speak with him. I was very appreciative that he was able to

spend some time with me….

 

 

Tony’s Pizza Napoletana
1570 Stockton St
San Francisco, CA 94133
(415) 835-9888

No Reservations. No Exceptions.

The philosophy at Tony’s:

A small pizzeria in Naples, Italy is the inspiration behind Tony Gemignani’s story for Tony’s Pizza Napoletana. A fulfillment in his ever growing passion for pizza drew him to self content when he first tried an authentic Neapolitan pizza. Since then he was determined to learn this art of pizza making and one day open a restaurant like no other.

 

Tony Gemignani and Albert Grande          of Pizza Therapy

Tony Gemignani and Albert Grande of Pizza Therapy

 

 

You can listen to Tony’s Interview (and download it if you wish) below:


Tony’s book Pizza: More than 60 Recipes for Delicious Homemade Pizza is available right here…


Joe Fugere has an unusual story. He knew he wanted to get into the food business, but he did not know which one. “Hmmm” he thought, “what are the most popular foods?”

He reasoned the two most popular dishes in america were burgers and pizza. He did not want to sell hamburgers, so he chose pizza. And pizza lovers everywhere are glad he decided to take that fork in the road.

Coming from an Italian family he always had the passion for Italian food. His Italain grandmother explained to him that to really experience food he needed to immerse himself in the food of her homeland.

Joe did his homework and fortunately for us he chose pizza. He decided to go to Naples and study with the master pizzailo. He learned the craft well and started to make incredible pizza. He chose t learn to make pizza from the Associzione Verace Pizza Napoletana. This group of pizza professionals adhere to very strict rules of pizza preparation and pizza making. Everything must be to exact standards. There is no room for deviation from the very strict rules. Joe learned his craft well.

Associzione Verace Pizza Napoletana

Tutta Bella Logo

Tutta Bella Logo

His pizzeria Tutta Bella has been an incredible success.

Listen to Joe as he expplains the secret to his success.

Here is a review of Tutta Bella from Pizza Therapy:

 

We had an awesome pie in a place we’ve been hearing about, Tutta Bella. It’s right around the corner from Walter’s place, which I’ve got for the summer.Wood fired, the read-out said 759 degrees F. They use double zero “OO” flour.

The crust is light as a feather and quickly attains a fluffy crispness in no time. Hand shaped, of course, and beautifully burned, the dough is mouthwatering when fire roasted and married with fresh juicy spices and toppings. All the toppings we had were fresh and tasty. 

You can listen or download the interview with Joe Fugere of Tutta Bella below:

Discover incredible pizza…

 Tutta Bella
4411 Stone Way N, Seattle, WA 98103
(206) 633-3800

 

Don’t forget to search for: Find the Best Daily Deal in Your Neighborhood by Clicking HERE


Giulio Adriani of Forcella , is a pizza master. He oozes pizza passion. His pizzerias in New York have been wildly successful. He loves sharing his pizza knowledge. He is a teacher as well as a master pizzaiolo.

Guliano Adriani of Forcella

Guliano Adriani of Forcella

 

He prides himself on trying new things. He was the first to bring fried pizza dough pizza called the “montanara”. This is a very unusual pizza concept.  As you know to introduce new tastes into the New York pizza scene comes with a certain amount of risk. However, the pizza became wildly popular and is one of the newest pizza concepts sought after in the New York.

He also opened the first Kosher Neapolitan Pizzeria in the World. This became very popular as well. In order to be Kosher certain guidelines must be followed. Guliano also makes his own cheese for his pizzerias. And this is necessary in order to make great taste as well as making sure everything is done properly and correctly.

He explains the reason for his success:

  1. Passion: you need to be passionate about what you do. This needs to shine through with every pizza you make.
  2. Attention to Detail: If you want to make great pizza, you need to be aware of all the details that go into every dish you create.
  3. Knowledge: A key ingredient to success. You have to know what you are doing.

Here is an interview with Giulio from Pizza Therapy:

 

 

Guiliano is willing to share all he knows and offers classes at his pizzerias.

Forcella
485 Lorimer St.
11211 Brooklyn NY
(718) 388-8820

Forcella is an Italian pizzeria in Brooklyn dedicated to the art of making traditional Neapolitan pizza. Double certified pizza master Giulio Adriani creates an assortment of twenty different pizzas, as well as a variety of antipasti, insalate and housemade desserts.

Albert Grande and Giulio Adriani

Albert and Giulio

 

You can listen or download this interview with Giulio, below:

For more pizza passion check out:
Find the Best Daily Deal in Your Neighborhood

Or check out the Cooking Channel:

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