I've been curious about the Kalamazoo ever since I saw it a few years back before I started making pies... and then when I saw recent videos of Roberto using it and endorsing it, I was even more curious. While I wasn't ready to shell out $7K for the oven (I can build one in the backyard with pre-cast pieces for less I believe), many members of PMF were also showing some great pies coming out of the Blackstone.
I was lucky enough to snag a Blackstone at Lowe's on clearance for $115, tax in... and with a Chauflector mod added in (a piece of turned metal that's been snipped to help deflect more flame/heat towards the pie), I'm starting to see some great results as well.
Like some of the other folks here, I can vouch for the Blackstone. It's not by any means what a thick walled massively insulated brick oven can do, but it get's a decently close approximation and gives me easy pizza party hosting at my house.
Kenji, if you're ever in Chicago, you're welcome to come by for a night (or two!) of Blackstone testing. Just let me know! We'll grab Dennis as well! I'd be interested in knowing how you feel it compares to the Kalamazoo!
@t-dawg - Yup, slice the radish!
@pleiovn - Gochujang isn't used in making traditional kimchi as I understand it... you can probably try, and it should have some similar flavors, but likely won't have the same strength/flavor you're looking for from traditional kimchi.
@Thisisstephenbetts - You can drain the cabbage, but you want to reserve the salt water for adding back into the container you're storing the kimchi in after you'd mixed the wilted cabbage in the spices.
@Orange3324 - Actually, more in the Logan Square area now. Can't share just exacts just yet, but can't wait for when I can!
@Orange3324 - I wish I could say that I've got a place locked in and set... but just when I think I do, there's always something else that needs to be addressed. Let's just say we're very close (for at least the third time) but this one looks pretty hopeful. Thanks for asking!
Phenomenal article, excellent read which highlights a very true fear that I have now that my Chicago restaurant may be delayed into late fall/early winter... Thanks for opening up and sharing, as well as confirming my fears...
This is my father's favorite dimsum item. He's gonna be pleasantly surprised when I get a chance to try this recipe out!
This recipe is fantastic. I just opened up the jar yesterday after a one week ferment, and the flavor is amazing, considering there's no shrimp paste, fish sauce, etc. Thanks for the excellent recommendation on how to make vegan kimchi!
@Varga49 - I had similar concerns, but if you read the comment by danbob, the updates are on Glen's main page it seems. Latest update is here:
As always, excellent read... though now it juts concerns me how long it's going to take for me to open up PG Chicago...
@Orange3324 - Thanks for the heads up! I've got a few folks working on these spots... keep your fingers crossed! (I'm out of fingers to cross already...)
@orange3324 - No location secured just yet... you'd be surprised how long it can take to just lock in a location. (At least, I'm surprised...) Reading Tyson Ho's series on opening a restaurant speaks to my heart more than I'd like it to sometimes... Thanks for checking in though! I'll definitely post something up here once I lock a location!
Coming to NYC in a week to train at PG's. Looking forward to sneaking a meal in at Swine if possible, and hopefully get a chance to meet you and talk a bit!
Congrats on your open! It sounds like exactly what I thought it would be like... And yes, make sure you get some rest... Don't need you crashing and burning in the middle of being open!
Hope to come by in the next few months and try some of that beautiful looking food!
Good luck Tyson! I look forward to coming by when I'm in NYC for a meal, and to share my own misery stories of opening up in Chicago!
@canihavesome - Unfortunately, lots of regulatory agencies, both governmental and not, make their money based on the visits... and additional money if they're hired on for "consultation" to help pass the test. It's quite a racket how they're able to do this! I've seen the same in the healthcare industry where I used to work around the regulatory agencies there. Unfortunately, I had no idea it was the same in the food industry...
Sorry to hear about the crookedness of NYC inspectors! I've had a few investors read this article and told me they don't envy us at all... opening a restaurant is quite a journey... but at least you have plenty of good stories to tell later!
Keep your chin up! Can't wait to try some of your BBQ when I visit NYC soon...
@Kenji - This looks phenomenal! Definitely going to make this for a few upcoming parties... And I"ll have to think about how this may be adaptable to a woodfired oven roaring at higher temps....
So much truth to this... it's scary. Seriously, who knew location would be that tough to find? Tyson, as someone who's been looking for a spot to open up Paulie Gee's in Chicago since Oct/Nov of 2013, I feel for you! Good luck with the new spot, and can't wait to come check you out when I'm in town!
Jonathan has one of the most authentic Neapolitan pies that my wife and I have ever had... it's true, after visiting Naples, we came back and ate at Spacca again, and it was like being transported back... the flavors, the balance. His passion comes through in every pie, and he is a generous mentor as well! (He sat with Paulie and I for a long time, and shared plenty of notes, and then proceeded to give us a tour of his operations!) Phenomenal guy that I've had the honor of getting to know!
@Fredipus - Haha... you sound like a true pizza fanatic... in my case, it will definitely be "my oven has barely had enough time to cure", especially now that I've sold the mobile. (It was like being dumped for the first time watching it being pulled out of my driveway...) The hard part will be restraining myself from firing it up to full force and getting some pies in there once it's installed... that two-three week cure is going to drive me insane.
@Cpd007 - I'm just as antsy as you! Trust me, I'm not dragging my feet here... sometimes it just feels like the world doesn't turn fast enough.
And it sounds like I need to check out Villa Nova... I've been toying with a good homemade Chicago sausage recipe with no success. Perhaps I need some inspiration or some tips from here.
@Mfrapp - Not that we've heard... I'm signed up for their "updates" and have never received a single update either. I'm guessing it's a done deal unfortunately.
@Nick - Excellent overview! I've been trying to find a chance to try Burt's for a few years now, and this just solidifies my need to go... once I leave my job in a few weeks to get ready to transition to opening up PG's Chicago, I'll actually have free time to hit up Burts! Looking forward to a great experience there!
Also, glad to see there hasn't been much Chicago Deep Dish hatred in the comments yet! Here's hoping I'm not baiting those folks...
Would've loved to be able to come it for this! I guess I have a few sites to visit when I come out to PG's for some training instead... Congrats on five years Paulie!
I'm in! Can't wait to get my hands on one!
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