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Pizza Anyone?

Ryan King

What Is YOUR Favorite Pizza Provider?  

107 members have voted

  1. 1. What Is YOUR Favorite Pizza Provider?

    • Me N Eds
    • Pizza Hut
    • Dominos
    • Papa John's
    • California Pizza Kitchen
    • Round Table
    • Little Caesars
    • Ma & Pa Pizza Place (Independantly Owned)
    • Other - Not Listed

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Appreciate it! Time to add a few more to the collection... haha

Our pies from yesterday...  Did three total, two were traditional Margherita-style (with slight variance between them) and one was a classic pepperoni. Wood fired around 700-800F. 

Dough for all of them was a 3 day cold ferment Neapolitan dough (just yeast, water and salt). For the two Margherita's, the sauce was a simple rough mash of San Marzano tomatoes with a touch of salt and fresh garlic. The pepperoni featured a more 'classic' sauce I had leftover from last week, so it had fairly heavy oregano, garlic/onion, chili flake, some sugar and overall a bit more concentrated/rich due to the use of some tomato paste as well. So completely different from the San Marzano based sauce.

Margherita #1 was just the sauce, fresh mozzarella and basil and a swirl of extra virgin olive oil.  Margherita #2 was the same, but with the addition of Pecorino Romano to give a touch more Umami/richness. While both were stunning, #2 took the edge! But I love a nice sharper cheese accent, so I assumed I would at least. But man, simplicity is best here... Still easily our favorite pizza to make/eat. When the dough, sauce and cook method is just right... Can't get any better. 

The pepperoni was fantastic as well, a complete 180 from the previous two. Salty, zesty/herby. Just plain old pre-cut pepperoni from the store, so no 'cups' this time! 

I have a 25 LB bag of Italian 00 flour incoming tomorrow that will be utilizing for my Neapolitan style pizzas this summer, so I can't wait to try that out.









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3 hours ago, Nrthwnd said:

^All awesome looking, as always! But that first photo - what are the ingredients .... in? Or actually, what is that thing?

Thats actually my Kamado Grill I use for my wood fired pizzas (among other things). It's a ceramic outdoor grill, either charcoal or hardwood lump for the fuel. That first picture is just looking down in while it's cooking through the flue.

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A week ago, I went back to the pizzeria place that used to be my "usual spot", way before the pizza place opened across the street from us. Sunrise Pizza isn't Neapolitan style, like Via Tevere serves. Sunrise's pizza are loaded with cheese and cooked in a regular oven. And they're pretty filling too, for one person!

Here's how it went...


On my way to Sunrise.


Lots of really nice yards and gardens around us in the neighborhood.


Here we are! This pizzeria has been in it's location for "almost" 50 years!


Inside of the place. Pretty plain in the daytime. Looks better at night IMhO.


A nice lager to start with.


First, a Single Greek Salad. And this one was HUGE! More than I remember it being.


My 'usual' which was a pepperoni and mushroom, and black olives.


What I can see of Commercial Drive, from where I'm sitting.


I have too much food! So the rest went home with me. Everything was excellent!


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It's not 4th of July without... Pizza?!

So last week we picked up a new toy for making pizza... An Ooni Koda 16, an outdoor oven! So instead of using our normal oven which is limited to about 550F (or a bit hotter at the pizza steel utilizing broil) and requires 1hr preheat or so before cooking, or the outdoor Kamado Grill which I can get up to about 700-800F at the expense of a bit of fuel (charcoal/wood lump) and a 1hr preheat/prep as well... This Ooni runs propane and can get to 900F+ in about 25-30 minutes and be ready to go. A big perk is when its hot outside and you are not warming the inside of the house for 1.5hrs with the oven during preheat and cool down!

So this means for Neapolitan style pizzas at this high of heat, they are done in about 60-90 seconds! For this style in particular, you ideally need that intense heat and very hot stone to cook the dough just right. A touch of very light char, a super delicate poofy/airy crust and the toppings don't dry out. It's amazing! I had really good results with my normal oven with this style, using a pizza steel on the very top rack, preheating a long time and using broil to get a bit more heat into it... But the Ooni just does it quicker/better/faster. As they say, right tool for the job! Much like I won't be using the Ooni when doing Chicago deep dish, Detroit style or other pan pizzas. Or, if I want more intense smoke/wood flavor, that will still be on the Kamado. 

Used it a few times already and LOVE it! Great tool to have for all our pizza adventures... 

Without further ado, our pizzas from yesterday included a classic Margherita with fresh basil and buffalo mozzarella (can't go wrong!) and then a bacon, pickle and buttermilk ranch pizza with mozzarella and provolone. The bacon/pickle/ranch pizza was PHENOMENAL! One of the best specialty pizzas we have done, to be honest! Can't wait to do it again.







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  • 2 weeks later...

So as big fans of Detroit-style pizza, it was time we make the trek to Detroit to try the original Pizzerias that kicked it off! We went to both Loui's and Buddy's (original location) on this day trip. Buddy's is really the OG of the style, creating back in the 1946. Loui's was started by a cook that worked at Buddy's who branched off to open their own pizzeria.

Little know fact is that Detroit is really considered the "Pizza Capital" of the US, and actually boasts the most pizza places per capita, even over Chicago, NYC, etc... Who knew! Not to mention, was the origin of many popular chain pizza places (Little Cesears, Dominos, Jet's, Hungry Howies).




Welcome to Michigan! Detroit is just shy of a 2.5 hour drive from us in Cleveland.



First up, Loui's Pizza!


Lots of historical articles and such all over the walls, cool vibe!




The main dining room. It's empty because it literally opened just about 15 minutes before our arrival. People start flowing in shortly after.


Our pizza! Pepperoni, green pepper and black olives.


Tons of brick cheese goodness. This was seriously cheesy stuff! The crust was to die for, as expected, the best part of Detroit-style pizza!  Sauce, although light, was really fresh and loaded with herbs.


The beautiful edge!


Now the Original... THE start of Detroit pizza!




Walking in, some awesome murals and of course, a bunch of articles/front page and other write ups.


Some history and what makes Detroit style pizza so special!


One of the dining rooms (there is a bar/dining section at the bottom of the steps through the double doors there, and another third room off from that). Not too busy, which surprised me, but it was set to close in about an hour, so likely why!


Our future??


Love the appreciation for the history of these pies!


Our order... Two 4-piece Detroit pizzas... On the left, just old world pepperoni and on the right, a Mediterranean which featured a cheese blend, red onions, spinach,
beets, feta cheese, fresh dill and tomato basil sauce. It was SO good. But the pepperoni is hard to beat for a 'classic' pizza.


So good... The sauce was nice and bright in flavor/acidity. Not as herby as Loui's, nor is the pizza as cheesy. However, it's more balanced and overall, we both think this took with the win between them. However, if you like LOADS of cheese, Loui's would be the winner. Both have a fantastic crust texture, nice crispy bottom with a light/fluffy top. Then of course, the cheese coated/crispy edges are just pure heaven.


Yum! The dill really shined on this pizza and beets were a great topping.


The infamous mural!

We can't wait to get back and try a few more of their fantastic pizzerias! Such as Cloverleaf and Supino, among others. Highly recommend if in the area to stop by and try these iconic places!


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Pizza's from Sunday night. Overnight fermented dough, trying out a few different canned tomato options to see which we like best. This time, was Bianco Dinapoli with a touch of salt, fresh garlic, olive oil and fresh basil added at mashing.

Cheese wise, the pepperoni featured a mix of Munster and Asiago cheese. The margherita was just low moisture mozzerella.

The asiago/munster cheese combo was just incredible! But I am a fan of more sharp, robust cheese blends. Asiago is one of my favorites.

Really great tomatoes, but I think I do prefer the Cento San Marzano's I usually use for the natural sweetness/balance of those. I have four other canned tomatoes to try I picked up over the coming weeks, curious to see if one really stands out over the rest! This weekend, we are going to make more NYC-style pizzas (thinner, changes to dough recipe, cheese selection, etc...). 





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  • 2 weeks later...

So here is our the latest NY-style attempt from last night.

First up, the dough… This was just over a 5-day fermented dough, the longest I have done yet. The crisp/texture, workability and overall flavor was just spot on. I think aside from adjusting the yeast/ferment time as needed depending how long in advance I prep, I am perfectly happy with this dough for this style of pizza and don't plan changes. 

Sauce … For this one, I bumped up the oregano, sugar and cayenne to give it some robustness. Of course, fresh garlic too. A splash of red wine vinegar for acidity. I didn’t really take notes when I made up the sauce, so next time I will have to keep record so I can be consistent the next time I make it!

Cheese blend on both was a heaping pinch of pecorino romano right over the sauce first, followed by a blend of mozzarella/provolone and small parts of munster and asiago for added sharpness. This has been my absolute favorite cheese blend to date and will be my go-to blend on these types of pizza. I’m a fan of sharper cheese flavors on pizza compared to just mozzarella for example (except on margherita’s!).

Toppings on the one was bacon, olive and red pepper (can’t see the bacon as I placed it under the cheese). The second was just Italian sausage I made and rolled into little meatballs and par-baked before going on the pizzas.

Cooked in the Ooni with an adjusted bake technique… Full pre-heat to a stone temp of 700-800F and then when the pizza was launched the flame was off. Let the dough set for about 2.5 minutes before kicking the flame back on low for another 2-3 minutes until the pizza was done. A bit slower so the bottom/crust could crisp up a bit more with the additional time on the stone. Came out perfect! The crust texture was just SO good... A light crispy shell on the outside, but delicate/soft chew. No soggy/flop going on in the main body of the pizza underneath. 

We both agree, this may have been some of the best pizzas made to date. Def top 5 material! The crust, cheese blend, toppings and overall flavors going on was just right. Happy we have leftovers to enjoy later this week!

This coming weekend, we plan to make traditional margherita pizzas this time around with just the fresh mozz, basil and olive oil. 











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  • 2 months later...

We just got back from NYC for the first time ever (went for a concert at MSG!) but we had the entire first day we were there plus two half days to explore and well... Find and eat the best pizza the city has to offer!

So we did a bunch of research and I made a wish list of spots (which was about 6 or 7 places, but we finished with 9!). And wow, NYC did not disappoint.. The pizza was incredible, as was the city as a whole. We had a BLAST and will absolutely will be back!

As far as our favorite? That's really hard... I would just say the top 3 that stuck out in my head most... Joe's, Mama's Too and John's of Bleecker... Oh, and that pepperoni sicilian from Prince's... Yum.  It is REALLY close though, they are all fantastic. I also had to get one $1 slice, just because, and you absolutely can tell it wasn't in the same league as the others... But I still liked it for what it was.

Pictures are more fun than a bunch of text, so here is just a list of all of our stops with the pics to follow:

1.) Joe's

2.) Prince Street

3.) Di Fara

4.) Mama's Too

5.) John's of Bleecker Street

6.) 99c Fresh Pizza

7.) Ben's Pizza of SoHo

8.) Scarr's

9.) Pizza Suprema

10.) Joe's (again!)








































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  • 3 weeks later...

Last night's NY Style Pizzas... Full 18" pies! Since trying them out proper in NYC, I began working on my NY style pies a bit more to mimic the appropriate textures/flavors. I ordered in the flour known to be mostly used (Trumps B&B flour), and I found an online company selling 50 lb bags at a fair price. It is a really great flour to work with!

One was just three cheese (provolone, mozz and asiago) and the other banana pepper, olive and fresh fennel sausage.

I was not originally planning on 18" (made the dough to make 2x 16"), but my new pizza screens arrived in and wanted to try them out. The dough worked out nicely into the full size needed, just on the thinner side, and I launched the screened pies directly onto the pizza steel in my oven at 550F (steel was reading 640F via IR thermometer). After a few minutes, removed the pizza from the screen and placed directly onto the steel to finish another few minutes. 

The texture was incredible. Super great crunch on the complete underside of the pie. A touch thin, as expected, but otherwise it was near perfect otherwise. The sauce was just crushed San Marzanos, sugar, oregano and a touch of garlic. Simple and delicious. 





We also did this one on Saturday... A proper Sicilian. Of course, had to buy a new pan for it (14x14" Lloyd) and did a 3-day sourdough fermented dough. Layers of provolone right on top of the dough, followed by a heavy dose of sauce (a bit too much, but we were in a saucy mood that day... haha) and of course the toppings. Next time I plan to get the good pepperoni and hand-cut them to make wonderful little thick pepperoni cups. But the bagged variants had to do this day! 

The crust was just phenomenal... Airy with a beautiful crunch on the bottom. It was next level! 



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  • 2 weeks later...

Continuing the pizza tour, this time in LA. We had only two days, so we chose to get to Joe's (basically the same, but not, of the original in NYC... But some lawsuits and other fun behind it all...!) and Apollonia's which is a highly regarded place in the area.

Joe's was really good, but I do give the edge to the NYC OG, and not just because of it's location or anything. It just wow'd me a touch more. But still a stunning pie. Half cheese, half with fresh basil. Yum.

Apollonia's was the second stop, and wow, SO good. The sicillian slices were amazing. One was pepperoni, garlic and basil, while the other was topped with garlic, olive oil, ricotta, mozzarella, pecorino romano, oregano, grape tomatoes, arugula and truffle oil. As good as it sounds. We also got two original NYC style slices, one cheese and one pepperoni. We both preferred the Apollonia's slices over Joe's of LA. If you ever find yourself in the area, go here! (Cash only!).















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  • 1 month later...
  • 1 month later...

^ Thanks, from up in Canada! I double checked it all, and for the USA...

"National Pizza With Everything (Except Anchovies) Day" ~ Nov.12/23 😉

I kid you not. But any way - Every Day should be PIZZA DAY, right??? 🍕

(p.s. Those pizzas look AWESOME by the way.)


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  • 2 months later...

Found a great 2021 pizza story at Kitchn.com ~ here's the link to it...



"A French Chef Broke a Guinness World Record by Adding 254 Types of Cheese to a Single Pizza"


Still from the accompanying video in the article. But, does it 'taste' like anything....cheesy?

P.S. If you hit the photo, you'll get ALL of the Pizzas' photos in this Thread! Fair warning.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

Those look great, did you cook those on just an elevated rack with a pizza stone in a ceramic komodo style grill? I've had a Green Egg for like 15 years probably but haven't done pizza on it in forever, I think you pies have inspired me to give that another try sometime.

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Yeah, I basically set up the heat deflector plate on the grate and use 4 stainless steel elbow brackets to get the pizza stone above it a few inches in order to get the pizza higher in the dome for more top heat. In the picture above, I tried putting a pizza steel down first and then a stone directly on top of that to see how that did (if it would help the stone retain heat when doing a few back-to-back pizzas). Didn't really notice much difference though. So next time I will go back to just doing the deflector plate - brackets/risers - pizza stone setup.

But yeah, I really love the flavor of doing pizzas in the Kamado. The added touch of smoke is quite nice! Make sure to use hardwood lump (not charcoal) as it gets much hotter and performs better for pizzas. It will easily get to 700F+ and cook them up in minutes.

It posted out of order, but the pizza above the Kamado setup picture is the pizza end result from that day (one of three).

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  • 3 weeks later...

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