May 1, 2015 |

Expo Spotlight: Pizza Games and Challenge Winners!

By Bill Oakley


international pizza challenge 2015
If you were in Las Vegas, then you know that International Pizza Expo was the THE place to be. You could feel the energy and pizza enthusiasm from the moment you walked into the Las Vegas Convention Center.
There was something for everyone at International Pizza Expo 2015, whether you’re a veteran or just opening your first store. When the show closed on Thursday afternoon, more than 7,500 buyers had visited more than 1,065 exhibits and attended more than 95 seminars, demonstrations and workshops. Rounding out the experience were numerous culinary competitions, contests, demonstrations and other special events.

The final results for 2015 International Pizza Challenge were as follows:

 

Traditional Division Regional Winners:

Northeast: Marco Flores, Williamsburg Pizza, Brooklyn, NY

Southeast: Jane Mines, Nima’s Pizza, Gassville, AR

Mid America: Robert Sipes, Marco’s Pizza, Toledo, OH

Northwest: Aaron Hecht, Wild West Pizzeria, West Yellowstone, MT

Southwest: Arturo Ruiz-Gomez, Joe’s NY Pizza, Las Vegas, NV

International: Aaron Gehrman, Emilio Finatti Pizzeria, White Rock, BC, Canada

 

Traditional Division Finals:

1st: Marco Flores, Williamsburg Pizza, Brooklyn, NY

2nd: Robert Sipes, Marco’s Pizza, Toledo, OH

3rd: Arturo Ruiz-Gomez, Joe’s NY Pizza, Las Vegas, NV

Non-Traditional Division Winners:

Northeast: Jeffrey Gontarski, Esposito’s Pizza, Manasquan, NJ

Southeast: Rick Mines, Nima’s Pizza, Gassville, AR

Mid America: Brad Rocco, Bexley Pizza Plus, Bexly, OH

Northwest: Cameron Tittle, Kaos Pizzeria, Denver, CO

Southwest: Haider Ali, 786 Degrees Wood Fired Pizza, Sunland, CA

International: Sposato Domenico, Pizzeria La Conchiglia, Sona Verona, Italy

 

Non-Traditional Division Finals:

1st: Tim Silva, Pizza My Heart, Los Gatos, CA

2nd: Joey Gonzalez, Isa’s Pizza, Phoenix, AZ

3rd: Haider Ali, 786 Degrees Wood Fired Pizza, Sunland, CA

 

Pan Division Winners:

1st: Matt Taylor, Tony’s Pizza Napoletana, San Francisco

2nd: Nino Coniglio, Williamsburg Pizza, Brooklyn, NY

3rd: Davide Civitiello, Rossopomodoro, Napoli, Italy

 

Pizza Napoletana Division Winners:

1st: Tonino Cogliano, La Pizzeria, Frigento, Italy

2nd: Thiago Vasconcelos, Tony’s Pizza Napoletana, San Francisco

3rd: Akinari Makishima, Solo Pizza Napoletana, Nagoya, Japan

 

Gluten-Free Division Winners:

1st: Joyanne Heard, Chi Pie, Edmond, OK

2nd: Mike Eaton, Detroit Style Pizza Co., St. Clair Shores, MI

3rd: Giuseppe Lapolla, Pizzeria Primo Italian Restaurant, Kilkenny, Ireland

 

2015 Best of the Best Champion:

Floriana Pastore, Corporate Pizza Chef in Dubai

 

2015 Pizza Maker of the Year Champion:

Tim Silva, Pizza My Heart, Los Gatos, CA

 

The Winners in the 2015 World Pizza Games were as follows:

 

Master Acrobatics — Min-Chul Shin, Mr. Pizza, South Korea (272 points)
Individual Acrobatics — Min-Chul Shin, South Korea (261.5 points)
Fastest Dough Stretch — Brittany Saxton, Six Hundred Downtown, Bellefontaine, OH (28:65 seconds, new record)
Largest Dough Stretch — Spencer Glenn, Pizza My Heart, Monterey, CA (45.00)
Fastest Box Folding — Spencer Glenn, Pizza My Heart, Monterey, CA (25.29 seconds)
Pizza Triathlon — Dave Sommers, Mad Mushroom, West Lafayette, IN (38.56 seconds, new record)

Start making plans now to attend International Pizza Expo 2016, which will again be held at the Las Vegas Convention Center March 7 – 10.

Bill Oakley
Show Manager

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