Boy, do I miss Slice. I hadn't heard of half of these places—Wheated, Marta, Ragazza—until this post. How am I supposed to keep my must-try pizza list updated without it?
About time. Those pizzas look great! Keep 'em coming. I want some next time I'm in the city.
'here in Atlanta that's the absolute truth... "I wouldn't go to a place just because I like the food...I go to tons of places where I don't like the food."'
Obviously I can't speak for all Portlanders, but I believe this is definitely not true for PDX. I'm pretty sure most Portlanders would agree that you've gotta hit the mark for service, environment, and food to get repeat business (though I live in a bubble made of food-obsessed friends, so my read on this could be skewed). Convenience definitely plays a roll too.
And an example of the exact opposite of Varasano's take on Atlantan dining habits: Portland's Little Big Burger mini-chain is immensely popular, and it's not because of their cavernous, loud, open kitchen environs, with the aggressively angular wall murals, and fluorescent lighting. It's because they have the best fast food burgers around.
It seems like he's just in the wrong place.
Finally, a reason to go to Chicago.
Wolfing down a Famous Original A at the end of a shift at PG's was definitely a highlight for me.
Wy'east's (so sad it's gone) Indian Paintbrush special with cilantro pesto and roasted red peppers also definitely left a mark on my memory.
And while I was feverish and couldn't taste much due to the flu, getting my annual Di Fara fix with my cousin and some almost-long-lost friends way back in January was awesome. I then slept for the next 36 hours.
I very much look forward to perusing my own copy of what I'm sure is a mighty fine publication. However, the cover is killing me. Scott, you probably did not have a say in the cover design, but wouldn't it have been more appropriate to have one of the featured artists also design a box to be photographed as the cover of the book? Maybe it wasn't in the budget...
Anyway... enjoy your delicious moments!
... yet pliant.
Mozel tov! I am where I am 'cause of Slice, Adam, and this saucy community.
Thanks for keepin' it crisp!
There are some exceptions. Europe definitely has a leg up with chips & curry and crepes (arguably junk food, I guess).
I think pizza screens are also used to keep the bottom of a pizza from cooking faster than the rest of it. You can buy 'em off Amazon:
Slice editors: I'd love to see more of these kinds of videos from folks who have different techniques and processes.
Also the pizza is killer. I hope to swing by again in the winter.
This is a great line: "And, in general, labels bolster the tyranny of authenticity over originality."
This is maybe just a grammatical ambiguity, but when I read, "I spend about 12 hours a day working alone, when the pizzeria isn't open," I understood it to mean that Keith was working 12 hour days on top of the time it's open or in addition to a regular work week. And this seemed insane to me. And now I've realized that's not what he meant. And I'm relieved for him.
I don't know exactly what the cashew cheese that you were using was like, but I've had some pretty good success with a cashew cream:
1. Soak cashews overnight
2. purée them in a blender/Vitamix (cover with an inch or two of water before puréeing)
3. (optional) bring to low simmer on stove over medium heat, stirring constantly, until slightly reduced (this will help the cashews soak in the last of the water and keep the cashews and water from separating)
4. strain them through a chinois or fine mesh.
5. mix in additional water as needed to gain the right consistency
You can season it with whatever you want. I find some salt and nutritional yeast gives it a pretty decent, mild cheese-like flavor. And you'll have to play a little with the moisture content—how wet you want it will depend on the heat of your oven. I'd imagine you'd want a pretty wet cream given then heat of your oven. If it gives you an idea of how liquid-y, I tend to put mine in a squeeze bottle with a clipped nib, which makes for easy and quick distribution of mozzarella-like pools of cashew cream on the pizza.
Also: thanks for your insights here about what makes an establishment feel like a neighborhood place—now that I've read it, it seems obvious— especially your point about having locals working.
@LouT That crust looks pretty good to me. The charring on the edges is dramatic and enticing, and the cut-away of the interior shows a decent looking crumb. The underside appears nicely done as well, with the exception maybe of the narrow ring of black toward the outside (which doesn't seem to be uncommon in a lot of Neapolitan-y pizzas).
I'm definitely curious to see what a crust with freshly milled flour tastes like.
series name ideas
Apizza o'the Pros (or some spelling variation)
The Secret Life of Pizza People
Leaning with the Towers of Pizza
Hot Off the Peel
A Slice of Knowledge
Great Domes of Pizza
... I'm sure there are better ideas out there...
This is a great piece. I'd love to read more of these kinds of in-depth interviews with pro pizzaiola/os and pizza entrepreneurs. Getting a little more perspective from those who do the work daily promises to be pretty enlightening. (E.g., wish I had read this two years ago: "I did imagine myself being the one to make the pizza all the time. Thank God I was able to get out and not do that because then I think it would have seemed like work.")
P.G. now seems kind of like the unofficial mascot of Slice. Ever consider replacing the pizza icon in the title bar with the smiling visage of this handsome restaurateur?
Matthew Yglesias on Slate thinks this whole thing is silly: http://www.slate.com/blogs/moneybox/2013/04/16/home_cooked_pizza_don_t_try.html
I think he's missing the point.
How to Make Matzo Pizza: don't. Just don't do it.
You can eat regular pizza again in a week. You can wait.
side effects may include: nightmares, tweeting, nausea, vomiting, erectile disfunction, and walking corpse syndrome.
I just love the feud. Yes, it's probably a bit psychologically harrowing for the Grimaldi and Ciolli families, but (a) it probably helps drive business and (b) what a great addition to NYC pizza lore. Seeing the duelling lines-out-the-door running into each other between Juliana's and Grimaldi's is kind of cool.
I'd say, "welcome," but it appears you've been here all along.
Apocalypse Pizza is amazeballs. Thank you.
I second darklighter's pizza challenge.
@AK. I know the shaker thing is a small thing. Having a second one has crossed my mind, but it doesn't solve the first problem of it not being put back, which is something I'll inevitably have to do myself. This doesn't really upset me, it's just a minor annoyance I'd rather not have to deal with. I'd much rather someone buy a pizza and not put back the shaker, than not buy a pizza.
@f r y: I agree with AK's incredulity here. You're making the rest of us look bad. I feel ashamed now.
I also want to give a shoutout to Familiar Studio, the very kind and talented folks who helped me rebrand this place Handsome Pizza. Without them it may have ended up Chotch McGotch Pizza and Soufflés with a logo of a spider-monkey, because coming up with terrible pizzeria names and bad design is my other hobby.
Most customers do clean up after themselves, but those who don't are the ones I remember. I do have dish bins labelled "dishes" and "recycling" and I think this helps. But every time someone takes the chili flake shaker and doesn't return it—it gets my back up.
Your anecdote about sincerity being mistaken for sarcasm is brutal. That hasn't happened to me yet, but I definitely got a less than stellar Yelp review after an interaction with a customer went unintentionally south because I was exhausted from the day and wasn't paying enough attention to how I presented myself.
pizza has never looked so unappetizing. why? not because of math, but because of lighting (and weird rubber-gloved hands molesting the slices)... which i guess is probably math on some level. ok, so because of math. ugh, math... (i love you).