First an update on the pizzatherapy.com forum. I found wonderful free forum software called phpBB I have installed all of the files. Then I uninstalled everything I installed. I have deleted all of the files. I have reconfigured and ftp’d everything. I am still unable to get the forum up and running…I am still working on it though…If any one can help, I would appreciate it.
Enough of my problems, I want to discuss my favorite topic: pizza
I love talking to anyone about pizza. I enjoy discussing how to make pizza, pizza tricks and tips. Discussing pizza is one of my favorite pasttimes.
One of my favorite conversations is who makes the Best Pizza in the World. This is, of course a loaded topic. The truth is there is not one correct answer. Everybody is right. Its kind of like discussing sports….
As I mentioned here, I recently had the opportunity to talk about pizza with Chef Peter Reinhart. It was a fantastic conversation. But as you know I love to talk…
I have also had recent conversations with two other “Legends of Pizza”. These men make pizza day in and day out. They live in the trenches of pizza. They embody “Spiritual Pizza”. They are pizza.
The first, Gary Bimonte a co-owner of Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana located in New Haven Connecticut. He is the grandson of legendary pizzaiolo Frank Pepe.
Gary spoke about the newest Pepe’s located in Fairfield, Connecticut. He explained the recipes and pizzas are the same. The Fairfield Pepe’s also has a coal fired oven. The lines go out the door. This location is doing better than expected.
I spoke with Gary about the long lines at Pepe’s. You can actually wait in line as long as two hours. He said, although he never had to wait, he has heard life-long friendships have been made and conversations flow fast and furious while waiting in line. I can personally attest to this fact!
Gary also explained the actual story of how the World Famous Pepe’s Clam Pizza was invented. What a pizza tale!
The other pizzaiolo I spoke with was Chris Bianco of Bianco’s Pizzeria located in Phoenix, Arizona. Chris is originally from the Bronx in New York. He loves discussing pizza.
Bianco’s has been nominated as the Best Pizza in the World by Peter Reinehart, (American Pie), Ed Levine, (A Slice of Heaven) and Penny Pollack and Jeff Ruby (Everybody Loves Pizza).
Chris Bianco is enthusiastic and humble. I could not believe his down to earth conversation. He is very philosophical. He is colorful. He is a character.
Chris Bianco mixes all of his dough by hand. That’s right: by hand. This started out of necessitiy because when he started, the business could not afford a mixer. Not so any more. Bianco’s Pizzeria is crowded every night with two hour waits not uncommon. He can afford a mixer. But he and his brother, still mix all of the dough by hand!
Explaining his pizza philosophy, he said to me, “we are never more important than the ingredient.”
Chris shared important tips and tricks of what makes Pizzeria Bianco such a success. He also had some tips for the home pizza maker.
Thank you Peter Reinhart, thank you Gary Bimonte, thank you Chris Bianco. You all are Legends of Pizza! I am honored. I am overjoyed. I am humbled. I am smiling from ear to ear...
For more on the pizza conversations with these Legends of Pizza, keep reading Pizza News …stay tuned, right here...
Pizza on Earth, Good Will to All!