Thursday, March 23, 2006

Here in pizzaland, it has been the best of times, it has been the worst of times.

I guess I will talk about the negative first to get it out of the way.

I have been thinking about a pizza forum for a while. I have gotten several emails from pizza fans who felt it should be a reality.

OK, I know there are certain times, when I have to start paying attention to what people are saying, and this is one of those times.

I am committed to make sure has a forum.

Here are a few of the reasons:
1) has built up quite a following of pizza fans throughout the entire world.
I have been very consistent about sending out issues of Pizza News. Pizza News readers are loyal. A forum would be way for these pizza fanatics to touch base with each other and start a conversation.

2) Certain pizza questions could be handled by certain forum members. This would be great way for people to connect with each other.

3) A forum will also form a community. I feel very connected to Pizza News readers. I know some of them have been out there for years. I think it will be wonderful to see the community in action with a forum.

The first thing I did, with assistance, was research the best forum to have. I found one. I was excited. As I looked into it, I needed to have a MYSQL data base on my website.

I did not have one. I needed to upgrade. I upgraded. I got an MYSQL database.

Then I contacted the forum maker about minimum requirements. "Sorry", the salesperson said. "Your newly upgraded website with your MYSQL database, does not meet the mimimum requirements."


OK back to the drawing board. I found a free forum: phpBB. I downloaded it. I ftp'd it up to my website. I read all of the documentation. I read the FAQ's. I learned. I studied.

I am unable to get the forum running. It does not work.

I am dead in the water. I need help, I need assistance...I will get this forum up and running. I know I can do it... I have contacted the community...hopefully I can get this worked out...If anyone in pizzaland has any experience with the phpBB forum, please contact me.

Now on a positive note: the next couple of issues of Pizza News (Sign up for Pizza News here!) will really be special.

To find out more, you will just have to subscribe.

I did speak to Peter Reinhart (author of American Pie: My Search for the Perfect Pizza.) recently. We had a wonderful conversation. He told me things about pizza, I had never heard of. He oozes pizza passion. He is an amazing pizza resource.

Peter said there are two types of pizza: good pizza and great pizza. He also predicted a major shift in the American Pizza trend.

We discussed making pizza and what pizza can do for your heart and your soul. Peter said he first had revelations about the spiritual aspect of food, while making bread. Breadmaking changed his life. Pizza is just an extension of breadmaking.

He also spoke about his renewed quest for pizza perfection. Peter explained that his original search was for pizza recipes and pizza tricks. He soon realized that incredible pizzas were being made where the pizzaiolos "really really cared about what they were doing and used the food as a medium to convey their caring to the people they were feeding".

He spoke about Chris Bianco of Biancos Pizza (Phoenix, Arizona)as being the hero of American Pie. Bianco makes the best pizza Peter has ever eaten.

Peter said he recently had a pizza which was as good as Bianco's. The pizza place is in Portland, Oregon. I posted Peter's comments here. Amazing pizza!

More on my conversation with Peter in a future issues of Pizza News and this blog...stay tuned...


Jon said...

Albert, I'm a Pizza Therapy newsletter fan, and am trying to blog for the first time. Hope you get this.

Question: I've tried the Caputo flour you recommended, but the results were not good - the dough came out very stiff and cardboard-like. Any suggestions? Thanks.

Molly Myles said...

Hi Albert! Congratulations on getting your blog up and running. I can't give you any advice about your forum. I'm computer challenged myself. Looking forward to more Pizza Notes.

pizzatherapy said...

I am not sure Jon.

How did your pizzas turn out before?

How about your kneading technique? Did you knead the dough enough? Was it soft and pliable? Maybe you need to knead some more...

Antoher thing is the amount of water in the dough. I would try adding a little more and this would make the crust softer...
please let me know...
pizza on earth,