In The Kitchen

2012 April: Safe, Not Sorry

One chilly November night, two employees working late at a suburban Milwaukee pizzeria decided to step out for a cigarette before cleaning up for the night. Within a split-second after opening the back door, they faced a gun barrel and three men. The trio forced the employees back inside, where the gunman pistol-whipped one employee.More »

2012 April: Raid The Pantry

It’s certainly important to consider and sample new items to incorporate into our menu to keep our customer base excited and interested. Although I do think it’s critical to periodically introduce new dishes, it’s not always necessary to bring in new ingredients. All too often we overlook the obvious –– existing inventory we already have.More »

2012 April: Forbidden Fruit?

Hawaiian Pizza and its variations broke the mold years ago, combining sweet, tart pineapple with savory, salty ham to create a menu favorite across the country. While pineapple has become a mainstay on many pizzerias’ toppings lists, there is a world of fruits just waiting to find their way onto your pizzas. Mango, cranberries, apples,More »

2012 March: Man on the Street

2012 March: Man on the Street

What’s the strangest pizza you’ve ever enjoyed? I’ll never forget an experience I had in an old-school pizzeria in Trenton, New Jersey. The shop, Papa’s Tomato Pies, is the kind of place that would have you arrested for requesting pineapple on your pizza. That’s why I was shocked to see a pie on their menuMore »

2012 March: Affinity For Artichokes

2012 March: Affinity For Artichokes

When G. Terrill Brazelton, head chef at Slice Stone Pizza and Brew in Birmingham, Alabama, developed his pizza menu, including artichokes was a no-brainer. After all, Brazelton grew up eating steamed artichokes from his parent’s California garden. Today, he places artichoke hearts on the “Very Veggie” pizza alongside spinach, mushrooms, Kalamata olives, onions, jalapeños, garlicMore »

2012 March: Ask Big Dave

2012 March: Ask Big Dave

I haven’t updated my menu in a couple of years except for price adjustments. Is it worth it to pay a professional company to do this for me? Austin Rodigero Phoenix, Arizona I’m rarely stopped dead in my tracks. A few years ago, however, I did a double-take as I passed an exhibitor’s booth atMore »

2012 March: Dough Doctor

2012 March: Dough Doctor

Q: We get a lot of requests for a whole-wheat pizza, but all of our attempts to make one end up with dry, hard texture and poor flavor. What is the secret to making a good whole-wheat crust? A: Like so many other things in life, once you know the secret, it really isn’t allMore »

2012 March: Bruschetta Basics

2012 March: Bruschetta Basics

Bruschetta (broo-SKEH-tah) has emerged as a very popular appetizer (running a close second to fried calamari). In the Italian repertoire of appetizers, offering bruschetta makes a lot of sense. It’s easy to prepare, it holds well (meaning it can be prepped well ahead) and it can be offered at an attractive price. The food costsMore »

2012 March: So Sweet!

Amaretti Cookies

Gaining a competitive edge in today’s crowded market is more crucial than ever. Diners expect the moon and the stars — preferably locally sourced, homemade and at a great price. Desserts offer a great way to distinguish an independent from the chain restaurant down the street — or from the pizzeria around the corner. LookMore »