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Scott's Pizza Chronicles: Pizza Menu Time Machine

A note on the menu indicates that the pizzas are all 12 inches. A "Plain-Cheese" pizza is just $1.15 and every topping is twenty cents more. The most expensive pie is the "Twin Trees Delux," ringing in at a whopping $1.65 for sausage, mushrooms, onions, peppers and anchovies. Pepperoni is an option, but a letter from the owner tells me it wasn't on the menu when he started making pizzas in 1962. My favorite detail is the spelling of "muzzarella," which hints at the Rescignano family's pronunciation. More

Scott's Pizza Chronicles: A Brief History of the Pizza Slicer

The development of the pizza wheel is much more schizophrenic than its larger counterpart, but its principle is identical. The wheel uses the same perpendicular impact method to puncture its prey but does so with a circular blade rather than the more cumbersome long blade of the mezzaluna. As previously mentioned, there was no need to quickly dice up a pizza into even units until slice culture rolled around in the middle of the 20th century. At that time, simple table knives were used to divide pies (ie Delorenzo's Tomato Pies in Trenton) but powerful alternatives lurked within unrelated industries. In the case of the pizza wheel, it all starts with wallpaper. More

Undercover Pizza Lover, Part II: Domino's Delivery Boy

My first delivery didn't go very well. I forgot the credit card receipt and a 2 liter bottle of soda. I had no option other than to run back to the Big D for the missing goods and get back on the road. If the "30 minutes or it's free" guarantee hadn't been nixed due to several major auto accidents in the 1990s, I would have been in deep doo-doo. More

Scott's Pizza Chronicles: Why I Love the International Pizza Expo

Most of us who read Slice are interested in the glorious craft of pizza making, but the truth is it wouldn't exist if it wasn't a gigantic industry. The latest stats tag the American pizza industry's value at $39 billion. Any industry this large has multiple trade shows, but there's only one place where pizza professionals can see all the latest in pizza products / technology: The International Pizza Expo in Las Vegas. I just returned from it last week. More

Scott's Pizza Chronicles: Fried Pizza

Fried pizza is real and New York is currently experiencing its first real dose in the deep fryer. It's soft with a thin crisp on the outside, deceivingly light and airy, and unbelievably addictive, but what exactly is it and where does it come from? More

Scott's Pizza Chronicles: Who Is Pulcinella?

Have you ever noticed the creepy guy hanging out in Neapolitan pizzerias? No, not Adam Kuban. I'm talking about Pulcinella. He's always wearing a puffy white getup, matching white hat, and a black mask with a long, pointy nose. Maybe you haven't noticed him, but Pulcinella is usually within ten feet of most wood-fired ovens in the form of paintings and figurines. Who is this guy and why is he associated with pizza? We'll have to go back a few centuries to find out. More

Scott's Pizza Chronicles: Ray's Pizza Demystified

It's very likely that other pizzerias used the name Ray before Ralph Cuomo (I found evidence of at least two), but none lasted long enough to be affiliated with the current situation. The pizzeria at 27 Prince Street truly is Patient Zero for the Ray's epidemic. Plenty has already been written about the confusing ownership of the various Ray's locations, so I'm going to give as quick a summary as possible by tracing the lineage through a collection of business licenses and phone books I have collected over the years. More

Scott's Pizza Chronicles: The Story of Coal

The once-necessary-then-obsolete-now-re-popularized coal oven has an interesting past that traces the story of pizza development in the Northeastern USA. Those who have experienced the goodness of a coal-fired oven may take for granted the resulting pizza's crisp yet chewy texture, but how did these chunks of black rock get into our ovens? More

Scott's Pizza Chronicles: A Brief History of the Pizza Box

Most Slice'rs probably agree that pizza is best served directly from the oven, but over 1 billion pizzas are delivered each year and every single one of them is transported to its destination in a simple cardboard box. The contemporary pizza box remains as anonymous as it is simple, as few of its users know anything about the cardboard coffin's humble origins. Let's dig a little deeper into the history of the pizza box to provide some context for an item most of us view as a necessary evil in the life of a pizza eater. More

Jeff Varasano on Baking, Branding, and the Business of Pizza (Part 2)

AWESOME interview! Both parts really interesting and enlightening.

Emmett's Does Not Serve the Chicago Deep Dish You're Looking For

@max I got no beef with your review, just think we had different experiences. But I'm game to go back for another try! The crust does look drier in your photos, and ours was served in-pan just like in Chicago. Maybe they ran out of pans when you went? Also our sausage was chunked just like Pequod's, not precooked and cut up the way it looks in your photos. Oregano in the sauce, yes. But I had no real issues with the pizza over all. But let's go back!

Whether or not it's "authentic" is a different discussion and the issue Max has with Emmett's. But that's a tough discussion to have because the case can be made that the MOST authentic would be the place that created it. And without getting into an argument about who worked where or who invented what recipe, the original Uno is completely crap. So if that's a target, I wouldn't want to be authentic. Emmett's is way better. For the record, I really like Lou Malnati's and Pequod's for deep dish but my experience isn't super deep. That being said, I was just in Chicago late November eating TONS of deep dish so I'm not completely unaware of what it's like in the wild. (I'm also not a Corner Bistro fan)

Anyone who just doesn't like (or has never had) deep dish pizza should be ignored on this. You might not like Nascar but you can't say those cars aren't fast. Catch my drift?

Emmett's Does Not Serve the Chicago Deep Dish You're Looking For

How to Find and Order Great Pizza in New York

LOVE this piece. Totally agree with the "on a plate" distinction. I'm a fan of "not too hot and just on a plate" request. Depending on the joint, I might say "not too hot" when I think it's been long enough or right when I order. This was the big challenge when I interned at Suprema for a week. You learn the spots in the oven so a fast reheat happens in one spot and a "well done" request happens in another.

@scott123 and anyone who cares... Patsy's Harlem is usually under 2 min bake. Best is usually around 4-5.

Scott Wiener's 'Viva La Pizza!' Showcases 100 Pizza Box Covers

So happy this is out in the world now!

@egadman Delicious moments will truly be enjoyed!!!

@PizzaBoxes Thanks so much for those amazing boxes!

@bob You are correct, I think the Kindle edition is unnecessary.

Scenes From Slice Out Hunger

Yo Thomas - cool ideas! Email sliceouthunger@gmail.com to help us improve for next year!

Fight NYC Hunger and Eat the City's Best Pizza at Slice Out Hunger, October 9th

Some will be hot (from nearby pizzerias), others from Brooklyn, Bronx and Queens will probably not. We have 700+ pizzas coming in from 43 different pizzerias and logistics are pretty nutty to keep the pizza as fresh and flowing as possible. We'll do our best to feed as many people as humanly possible at the event because every slice eaten will directly sponsor 12.5 meals through Food Bank For NYC. So if you eat 6 slices, that's 75 meals for the homeless. Pretty awesome!

Pizza-Town USA Addendum: Newspaper Review from 1958

Just in case anybody gets curious about this... I was doing some research for a book project and ended up going to the Paterson Public Library to check the old microfiche of the Paterson Morning Call. This Dine Out section was a weekly restaurant review that appeared every Friday. I checked out a few of them (and printed them out if anybody is really interested) and they are all written like this. Pizza Town USA's piece did definitely appear in the July 25, 1958 edition and the pizzeria even advertised on the same page.

Pizza Capital of the World: Tasting Our Way Through Old Forge, PA

Got any photos of the Universal oven?

Pizza Obsessives: Jimmy Coponi

Who cares how young he is? Jimmy's pies look great and I want to eat them. Sounds like lots of folks are super jealous.

Photo of the Day: World's Largest Deliverable Pizza

@BigMamas -- Is there an email address I can use to reach you? Got some questions about the box for a project I'm working on. Hit me at scott at scottspizzatours dot com

Scott's Pizza Tours is Hiring, Watch this Hilarious 'Audition'

...did fill jobs. But I'm always into meeting anyone really interested via email to scott at scottspizzatours dot com

Scott's Pizza Tours is Hiring, Watch this Hilarious 'Audition'

Just a note: I was hiring but

What's Up in Pizza: Motorino Hong Kong, Grandma's Pizza Dance, St. Paddy's Day Pies, and More!

Grandma is VERY honored to be posted on Slice! The lady in the background, is my SECOND favorite part of the image. CHOMP CHOMP CHOMP!!!

Warning: These Domino's Commercials May Explode Your Brain

Gotto get that box!

My Pie Monday: Savoyarde, Dutch Gouda, Gas Station Pizza and More!

@Adam - It's the 120v. Plugs in no problem. Stone cools a bit after first pie but works pretty well overall. We only did a couple pies so can't say how it would hold up with heavy use but I'd love to drive back to Boston to give it another test drive.

Scott's Pizza Chronicles: Pizza Menu Time Machine

@jedd Yes but difference in food cost in minimal. Addition of a second size was a big change for the industry.

Scott's Pizza Chronicles: Pizza Menu Time Machine

I did not expect all this Syracuse love but it's great! My pizza experiences up there weren't very good but I was only in town for four years while doing my undergrad at SU. I've never had the pizza at Twin Trees but the owner and his family took a pizza tour last year and we met up at Pizza Expo. They were kind enough to send me all these menus and it's been on my list of things to look into for some time now. So glad it got the Central New York crowd excited!

Scenes From Slice Out Hunger

Thanks to all who supported the event! It took about three months of constant work to make it happen and our crew of volunteers was absolutely incredible. This is a 100% volunteer-run event pulled together by people who just want to see it happen and we're always looking for ways to improve it. This year's event set a pretty high mark with regard to the money we raised and the mechanics of room flow. I didn't set a date or do any real work until we had St Anthony's on board but I must say it's an ideal venue and worked perfectly. We were so overwhelmed by last year's massive turnout that I made a list of improvements and sketched a map of a better room flow right after I got home from the event and the result seems to have worked really well. We also had walkie talkies for better communication between inside and outside teams and signage so folks would know what pizzerias were across the room so they could save space on their plates / pizza boxes.

We're limited by how much pizza restaurants are willing to donate but I still think we could get some more next year. I'd love to have an even 500 pies, if not more. I'd also like to streamline the prize area next year. We picked the winners but I haven't contacted them just yet. Probably going to do that tomorrow morning. It's funny, I spend months pulling it together but it isn't over when we run out of pizza -- I still have at least a week of getting prizes to people and dealing with contacting everyone with info and getting the money to City Harvest. (if anyone needs napkins or paper plates please contact me, I have a million of them.)

You guys have lots of great ideas and we'll definitely consider any thoughts you have. As Adam said, we're always looking for ways to improve. The best way to help out is by volunteering to help at the event itself. We have meetings in advance where we talk about how the event will work and collectively brainstorm ways to make it better. So definitely shoot me an email or respond to the call to arms that Slice puts out about a month before Slice Out Hunger every year. I'd love to do something really big next year, so contact me EVEN IF YOU AREN'T IN NYC. I'm talking to you PHILLY, CHICAGO and LA (or wherever you are that has lots of people and pizza). There's also talk of doing one just for NYU in the near future.

Sorry for the long comment and for taking so long to chime in on this but I went from a tour yesterday right to event setup then stayed until the venue was spotless then toured this morning before doing a Pizza History talk at the New York Public Library this evening. Plus I've been apartment searching for the past 3 weeks, so it has been just a bit more hectic than usual lately. Also explains my spotty Scott's Pizza Chronicles posts as of late, but I assure you they shall return.

Thanks again to all who helped, to Serious Eats for donating prizes and covering the heck out of SOH, to Adam for BEING a prize and to everyone who attended and had a blast eating pizza for a good cause. Every slice eaten effectively rescues 12 pounds of food for the homeless and hungry. That means the event will rescue over 153,000 pounds of food via City Harvest!

Openings: Wheated, Ditmas Park, Brooklyn

SO SO SO SO SO excited about this! David and Kim have been lovely enough to welcome total strangers into their backyard several times over the past two years for crazy tastings on pizza tours and I can't wait to see what happens in a place that isn't literally their backyard. Great pizza, can't wait for more! And VERY excited about the electric oven. I really think they will start popping up more frequently because of control they provide with steady heat. Very very excited.

PizzaHacker Behind Pizza Program at The Forge

Jeff is one of my favorite pizza makers so I'm not too worried about his gear. The proof is in the pie.

Save the Date: Slice Out Hunger in NYC, October 10

@Humbucker You are absolutely correct. Last year we had a larger turnout than planned and of course there was the huge rain storm that forced everyone to cram inside like sardines. The new venue is much bigger so there will be more space to hang out but we're out of a bar and into a rec hall so there won't be the same "come hang out for a while" vibe. We're giving out the pizza boxes so you'll be able to split and eat your slices elsewhere if you want to. We're limited by how much pizza is donated but so far we're way past what we had last year (300+ vs last year's 220) and Fizzy Lizzy will be on hand as the beverage option.

All being brought in from their home pizzeria (most are close but a few are in Brooklyn) without any reheating so of course it's not going to be as good as if you were in the pizzeria. Sure, you can get slices from a bunch of pizzerias and that's the draw, but as Tim said it's all for charity and 100% of the funds raised are going to feed the homeless. It's also 100% volunteer-run so if anybody wants to help make this year's event the best it has ever been, please contact me.

Scott's Pizza Chronicles: A Brief History of the Pizza Slicer

@blaise I've seen it in Roman pizza shops but not so much anywhere else. Are they regular kitchen shears or long scissors?

@adam People are afraid to get it for you because they think you already have a closet full of them.

Undercover Pizza Lover, Part III: Slingin' Slices

@rat I'm so glad you dug the series! This was a concept I've had for a while but could never pull it off during heavy pizza tour season so I waited until the end of winter / early spring to make it happen. I have more pizza jobs I want to do but it's hard to inject myself into a system without getting in the way. Domino's was the only job I applied for and worked in a 100% "undercover" way. I know the owners at Metro and Suprema, both of whom gave me an open invitation to work a few shifts as an embedded reporter. Domino's has high turnover and minimal investment in training employees, so I didn't feel bad removing myself from the schedule after 3 weeks (I worked there longer because I truly was undercover). It also would have been hard to explain why a friend of mine was taking pictures of me during shifts if the owner didn't know about it. But I was just another employee as far as staff and customers were concerned, and that was my goal.

@dmc I would have said the same thing before doing this job.

Undercover Pizza Lover, Part III: Slingin' Slices

@millions It's true, there is no ice machine at Suprema. Really strange but that's just their deal. Good news is they're thinking of adding some nice draft beers to the counter!

@adam I agree, the striped shirts are rad. Joe said they've been wearing them since late 1960s. Very sharp indeed.

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