The launch of the new pizzas at Pie Town (see previous post) was a big success and we had a wonderful crowd. At the end of the night I took a straw poll and the Pepperoni Supreme (two kinds of pepperoni plus two types of pickled peppers) was the winner, just edging the BBQ Chicken with Holy Smoke Sauce. The Shrimp Scampi was just behind those two (it was my personal favorite of the night--really beautiful looking with its golden aioli sauce, and big juicy shrimp), and the short rib pizza was a distant fourth. It was really tasty but just a tad too much out of the box--kind of like an amzing pot roast on a pizza--but it was also the last one served so everybody was pretty full by then. The attendees gave us some great feedback ("More garlic and lemon in the scampi!" etc. etc.)
In the week since the launch we've been selling lots of BBQ Chicken pizzas and nearly as many Pepperoni Supremes, so those were clearly the two big winners, but I think the Scampi will find its own following--especially now with the additional lemon and garlic. The Short Rib will probably rotate out in March when we plan to introduce a Pesto Pomodori pizza. Our pizzaioilos are having a great time creating these new pies and I'm having fun playing Simon Cowell, critiquing and tweaking them until we all are satisfied. Our plan is to introduce a new pizza every month until we run out of ideas (and you know that will take a long time). Please write to me at [email protected] if you get to Pie Town and let me know your thoughts.
I'm headed to LA next week and will be meeting with the Pizza Quest producers in between my classes at Sur la Table in Newport Beach and the LA Farmers Market. We're hoping to squeeze in a stop at Tomato Pie on Melrose Ave., but can't make any promises. If you know of any other must-try places in LA please write to me at the above e-address. After LA I'll be headed up to Westlake Village for two days of classes at Let's Get Cookin' (what a sweet little cooking school!), and then up to the "other California" for classes at Ramekins in Sonoma and Draegers in San Mateo. BTW, I was notified by Sur la Table that there are still a few places left for my April classes in Kirkland, WA (April 17) and Portland Oregon (April 19). Please contact the individual stores if you'd like to attend.
Finally, I wanted to share this note from one of our international recipe testers, Celina Laaksonen, from Finland. It gave me a chuckle--thanks Celina!