Year-End Lists Part 2: After my best pizza in Portland was a lucky find, I’m finally approaching the "best pizza" lists with a skeptical eye.
Last week, I talked about hitting five of the top-rated pizza joints in Pizza City USA (AKA Portland, Oregon)—except…
Pizzeria number 5 was a last-minute substitution based on a Google search for the closest pizza joint.
I’d never heard of it, never saw it on any list—and it was the biggest surprise of my two-day pizza expedition.
So, after years of regarding them with suspicion, I’m officially skeptical of the best pizza lists.
Year-End Lists Part 1: Portland, Oregon is the best pizza city in the country--and why you should be wary of "best pizza" lists.
FROM THE “I DO THESE THINGS SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO” FILES…
I’m back, intact and fat, from two days in rainy Portland, Oregon.
I went there because it’s The Best Pizza City In The United States.
I suppose the big question here is: What did I find?
Is the pizza any good? And does the city deserve its reputation for eccentric hipsters?
Looking for an awe-inspiring gift? How about the 35-pound, 3-volume book that your favorite homemade pizza geek won’t buy for himself?
Are you tired of having conversations about pizza?
Are you growing weary of eating surprisingly good homemade pizza because your pants are now straining at the waist?
Every time the two of you travel together, are you having to say “No, I don’t want to try the three best pizzerias in this town tonight.”
If so, you are living with a pizza geek.
With that in mind, I can heartily recommend this as a holiday git: the 35-pound, three-volume ultimate masterwork of pizza, Modernist Pizza by Nathan Mhyrvold and Francisco Migoya.
What's the best beginner pizzamaker present this Christmas: a tiny, cruel oven for making pizza--or a good book and simple tools that make him look like a pro?
Are you thinking about buying a pizza oven as a gift for someone who’s brand new to pizza?
Here’s a tiny tale about three “first” pizzas.
The first time I made a “pro-quality” pizza was at my home in Los Angeles. We had a vintage 1950s Wedgwood stove that came with the house. It was retro cool.
I had just read Peter Reinhart’s book, American Pie: My Search For The Perfect Pizza. A bought a stone and a peel, and made a pizza using his instructions.
The fact that I was able to make a pizza that was so convincing was astonishing to me.
I'd spent years laboring under the belief that an incredibly hot oven was required. I didn't realize that a home oven was hot enough for making the kind of pizza I enjoy most.
Is it possible to make a career out of simply loving pizza? Scott Wiener may come closer to having that life than anyone.
Scott had planned on being music producer for film and TV. But the universe had other ideas, and he embraced them. He now has a business in New York called Scott’s Pizza Tours. Founded in 2008, they run “New York City Pizza Tours For True Pizza Nerds.” They offer walking tours, a bus tour, private tours, and also have online pizza classes.
Scott has also appeared in the New Haven pizza documentary called Pizza: A Love Story, he’s the subject of another documentary called (oddly enough) Scott’s Pizza Tours. And if you watch Hulu you may have seen him on as a competitor on the pizza-making competition series called Best In Dough. He also has a book about the art of the pizza box, Viva La Pizza.
Blaine Parker is the award-winning author of the bestselling, unusual and amusing how-to pizza book, Free The Pizza. Also known as The Pizza Geek and "Hey, Pizza Man!", Blaine is fanatical about the idea that true, pro-quality pizza can be made at home. His home. Your home. Anyone's home. After 20 years of honing his craft and making pizza in standard consumer ovens across the nation, he's sharing what he's learned with home cooks like you. Are you ready to pizza?
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