#1  
Old 06-02-2007, 07:55 PM
Ryan's Avatar
Laborer
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 72
Default NY Pizza

I just got back from NYC. I was asking around in several of the pizza shops and they all told me that the secret to their dough is the local tap water. Any thoughts on this? By the way, if any of you happen to go out there I recommend Cafe Palermo for their Cannolis.

Ryan
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 06-02-2007, 09:44 PM
dmun's Avatar
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: New Jersey USA
Posts: 4,216
Default Re: NY Pizza

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan View Post
they all told me that the secret to their dough is the local tap water. Any thoughts on this?
New York City, or most of it, has very good water. It comes from reservoirs in the Catskill mountains, and it is untreated except for clorination and filtering out big chunks. NYC owns huge amounts of acreage upstate to preserve their watershed, and polices the adjoining areas with an iron hand to protect the water at it's source.

As a side note, the reason that New York is a five story high city, except for the highrises with the wood storage tanks on top, is that that is the level that water will rise to, from gravity.

This said, New Yorkers will tell you that everything they have is the best in the world. Why else would someone pay two grand for a three-hundred-seventy-five square foot studio there? I can tell you from personal experience that some of these claims are, how can you say, exaggerated.

I think you can make pizza with any drinkable water. If in doubt, a neutral flavored bottled water can be used. After all, can Naples have water worth anything with all those active volcanos around?
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-03-2007, 09:24 AM
Ryan's Avatar
Laborer
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 72
Default Re: NY Pizza

Thanks. I was just curious. I live in Colorado and our water is great. Basically snow melt fills the local river and the taste in my opinion is better than bottled water.

Thanks,

Ryan
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-03-2007, 09:45 AM
CanuckJim's Avatar
Il Pizzaiolo
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Prince Albert, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,480
Default Re: NY Pizza

Ryan, Dmun,

I've posted on this subject before, I think, but it's worth repeating. Sure, you can make pizza or bread with just about any water and get fairly good results. There are a few buts, though.

Through experience and research, I've come to a few conclusions that might be helpful. The first is that any dough is really quite simple, in that you have only four basic ingredients: flour, water, salt and yeast. On the other hand, the interaction among them can be quite complex. It makes sense, then to consistently use the best of these ingredients you can find for the result you're after. Yeast, in any form, does not like chlorine. This is especially true of wild yeast. However, chlorine is a gas that will dissipate in water if it's left out, uncovered for about a day. Yeast seems to favor minerals in water, so snow melt or mountain water would be ideal. I use water from a very deep well drilled into a glacial morraine that's basically a very thick belt of sand and gravel, with springs running through it. The water is very soft, mineral rich and perfect for the type of hearth breads I make. Using water like this leads to optimum yeast performance that's repeatable.

Bottled water is usually a bit too "clean" for dough making, and some have a sodium content. Yeast does not like direct contact with salt, either, and that's why I always add salt only when the dough is in the "shaggy mass" stage. Again, though, I'm usually working with slower acting wild yeast.

I guess if you travel enough, you'll always run into NYC-like comments. In Dublin, where the huge Guinness brewery is, they'll tell you that the "black stuff" is so good because the water is piped in from the Wicklow Mountains to the south. True? Maybe. They'll also tell you outside the city that Guinness "does not travel well." This I got from a bartender in Dundalk, some thirty miles to the north of Dublin. "I only drink it in the city," says he.

Helpful?

Jim
__________________
"Made are tools, and born are hands"--William Blake, 1757-1827
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-04-2007, 06:46 PM
JoeT62's Avatar
Apprentice
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 174
Default NYC Pizza...and bagels while we're at it!

I have heard the water claim many many times. I grew up in NYC, and I do think that the pizza and bagels tends to be better there than in many other places. But I've had great pizza elsewhere as well. Of course, they make so much more of each than anywhere else, and I've had bad pizza and bad bagels in NYC as well.

Living in southern New England, the everyday pizza is fairly blah. The crust is completely non-chewy, and the cheese tastes artificial at most places. I'm sure they could do better, but if it sells, why bother? Which is not to say I can't get a decent pie around here. There are places in Rhode Island that make excellent pizza, and the North End in Boston has some fine stuff as well.

With the large Portugese population in these parts, there is one thing I like: all the local pizza shops offer linguica as a topping.

I still haven't had a decent bagel though....
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-05-2007, 03:49 AM
CanuckJim's Avatar
Il Pizzaiolo
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Prince Albert, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,480
Default Re: NY Pizza

JT,

I'm in the same position in rural Ontario. Solution? Make your own bagels. Jeffrey Hamelman's book, Bread, has an excellent recipe that works consistently well. A customer of mine in Pennsylvania says mine are better than what she was having shipped in from NYC. Go figure.

Bagels are, however, time consuming to make. They take two days and must be boiled. The real trick is to keep the dough extremely stiff, if not almost dry. If the dough is at all wet, you end up with hockey pucks.

Jim
__________________
"Made are tools, and born are hands"--William Blake, 1757-1827
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-05-2007, 05:05 AM
JoeT62's Avatar
Apprentice
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 174
Default Re: NY Pizza

Quote:
Originally Posted by CanuckJim View Post
JT,

I'm in the same position in rural Ontario. Solution? Make your own bagels.
I'll definitely give it a try at some point. I have a good friend who lives in the "West 80s" and he keeps me in supply from H&H bagels. I usually have a few ziploc bags hanging in the freezer.

For the record, the best I've had come from Bagel Oasis on the service road to the LIE out in Queens. Ahhhhhhh......
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-05-2007, 05:07 AM
james's Avatar
Brick Oven Merchant
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Pebble Beach, CA
Posts: 4,648
Default Re: NY Pizza

Naples is very proud of its water as well. Something about the water naturally filtering through the volcanic layers. One big natural brita filter.

I can attest that the espresso there is great.
James
__________________

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 06-05-2007, 09:05 PM
Apprentice
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: michigan
Posts: 111
Default Re: NY Pizza

If memory serves me correctly in "scent of a woman" when they are in a resteraunt in I believe NYC Al Paccino talks about how he dreams of the rolls at this the resteraunt. He said that the secret is the water and that other cities water have too much alkaline. I know its a movie but its the only time I remember a discussion of water relating to bread and NYC.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 06-05-2007, 09:41 PM
Balty Knowles's Avatar
Laborer
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Santa Cruz
Posts: 62
Default Re: NY Pizza

Sounds like a New Yorker answer to me. I imagine by the time the water gets to the tap in NYC it will be the same standard as any where else. ie full of chemicals. Perhaps he gets it from the Hudson river
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Getting the most from your Pizza Stone james Pizza Stone Baking 21 10-31-2014 01:37 AM
$1000 pizza??? mgraban Brick Oven Restaurant Reviews 9 10-08-2013 06:43 PM
Pizza in a Bread Oven james Newbie Forum 17 04-24-2012 08:13 PM
Pizza through the years.... Xabia Jim Pizza 2 01-07-2007 11:12 PM
Pizza Margarita grapeape What You Cooked Last Night 0 07-01-2006 12:11 PM


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 02:32 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0
2006/10 Forno Bravo, LLC