Pizza. It’s something we all love but are often afraid to make ourselves. Some might say it’s as simple as a slathering of sauce and a sprinkling of cheese, but don’t be a cretino – making the perfect pizza pie is serious business. Here are a few secrets from Toronto’s best pizzaiolo’s that might help you achieve the perfect pizza for yourself.
Quality, Quality, Quality
“From the flour to the yeast to the vegetables and proteins, it’s all quality, quality, quality,” says Queen Margherita’s Pizza Maker Lucas Bagley. “We use double zero flour with high quality yeast and absolutely no additives.”
In fact, every pizza maker we spoke with stressed the importance of high quality ingredients.
It’s In The Hands
Scrap the rolling pins and don’t use a machine to kneed your dough, Via Mercanti’s Romolo Salvati tells us. “The pizzaiolo’s magic touch is where all of the flavour and texture comes from.”
It’s In The Mind
“The secret is dedication and knowledge,” says Vesuvio’s owner Eddie Pugliese. “We’ve been here for 57 years, and nobody is perfect, but we care about the product that comes out of our house. That’s what makes it special.”
It’s In The Tools
For the guys at Pizzeria Libretto, the tools they use are incredibly important. “For us, the equipment plays a big part, especially because we’re VPN certified,” owner Rocco Agostino tells us. “The wood oven itself must remain between 850 and 900 degrees. The hardwood we use is a specific type. A pizza should only take about 90 seconds to cook, giving it a blistered, charred, light, chewy dough that makes all the difference for us.”
Over the years you try to come up with the perfect recipe – if one doesn’t come out the way you want it you can’t settle,” explains Marcello’s owner Maurizio Galisi. “It takes time. We’ve been open almost 23 years. In the beginning it took a while.”
Once lauded for his Chicago style deep dish pizza, Trevor Kitchen & Bar’s owner Trevor Wilkinson has a hard time narrowing down what makes the perfect pie – aside from the love, of course. “I think it’s a few things; great flavour combinations are as important as great crust, great sauce, and great cheese. The combination of all the elements is what will stand out.”
North of Brooklyn’s Josh Spatz agrees. “A great pie has the perfect balance of dough, sauce and cheese.”
So maybe it is that easy to make the perfect pizza – quality ingredients, the right tools, a nice balance, a little persistence, and a lot of love.
What do you think makes for a perfect pizza? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us @ViewTheVibe.