Sunday, April 17, 2011

Pizza Class with John Arena of Metro Pizza by Pizza Therapy

John Arena is an amazing pizziolo. He grew up with pizza. He's been making pizza for most of his life.

In 1980, after seeing an ad in an Italian newspaper, he and his cousin, Sam, sold everything they owned and moved to Las Vegas. At first things were tough. These New York City transplants struggled to create outstanding pizza in a town, that did not know anything about pizza.

They called their pizzeria Metro Pizza and now have several locations around Las Vegas. He and Sam's pizza skills are extraordinary. Metro Pizza is now regarded as having The Best Pizza in Las Vegas.

He loves sharing his pizza passion by showing others how to make pizza. He is also known as The Pizza Professor. He teaches the only college certified pizza class in the country. He calls his class Pizza 101 and you can read the course proposal at this link.

I was recently honored to attend a private class at one of his Metro locations. The Pizza class was fun, informative and filling. (It was filling in that we ate a lot of pizza. A lot of pizza!).

John started out the class by giving a bit of the Metro story. He said the first day they opened a couple of customers showed up on horseback. He and Sam were shocked, but they soon got over it.

He fell in love with making pizza for people and contends that it is the world's greatest collaborative food. John also states that the best thing aobut pizza is that you eat it with people that you care about.

John relates that everyone has a favorite pizza in their heart. A special place with special pizza. To start out the class, John made each of us share our favorite pizza memories. The funny, the romantic and the life changing pizza tales reavealed were impressive.

It seems everyone has a pizza story. Everyone. (And I bet you have one, yourself!)

When you eat pizza, John explains, you bring your own memories to the table.

Listen and watch as John gives an Introduction to Pizza:

Thanks, John, you are a true Legend of Pizza.

You can find Metro at various locations around Las Vegas:

Metro Pizza
1395 East Tropicana Avenue
Las Vegas, Nevada
Tropicana & Maryland Parkway
Phone: (702) 736-1955

If you get the opportunity to take this Pizza Class, I recommend it without reservation!

pizza all over Las Vegas,

Albert Grande
The Pizza Promoter
Clerk in Training at:
The Pizza Therapy Digital Store

Here are some more great pizza resources:

I have copy of making pizza and I think it's great:

And of course Tony Gemignani's book is outstanding:


carolyn said...

That is very true. There's something almost mystical about's a magical orb of deliciousness. And I've had so many pizza memories over the years that I can't count them all. One in particular, when I was a girl around 15, my friend's mother used to bake pizzas by the dozen. I don't know how she did it but the crust was perfect...more like a bread. She would stick tomatoes into the dough and bake it with some olive oil, orgegano and maybe some Parmesan cheese...garlic was definitely involved.. My friend and I would gorge ourselves on her mother's  pizza....sheer heaven. And still after many years I could still taste that pizza in my mind as if it were yesterday.

pizzatherapy said...

How true Carolyn.

There really is something magic about pizza.

Many people get this and understand the magic.

Others unfortunately do not get it...That is to bad.

But for those of us who know in our hearts about pizza: the world of pizza is a beautiful place.

It's so much more than just thorwing ingredients together and cooking something.

As John Arena said during his class: pizza is a wonderful food to share.

I loved your story about your friends mom. I can just taste the pizza as you describe it!

Wonderful, magical yet simple. But the tastes when made by someone who cares about making pizza: an unbelievable experience.

pizza forever,