The Wood-Fired Blog

Live Demo from the 2017 International Pizza Expo in Las Vegas

Feb 15, 2018Posted by Forno Bravo

In 2017, Forno Bravo hosted a booth at the International Pizza Expo in Las Vegas. Chef Leo Spizziri, a certified master instructor, and world champion pizzaiolo was there with us to engage the crowds and showcase the Forno Bravo custom Napoli 120 oven with his entertaining and educational in-booth demos. As we busily prepare for the 2018 show, we would like to take a look back at Chef Leo’s last demo from the 2017 Expo and share it with you.

Serving up a Wide Range of Dishes

Chef Leo started out this demo with an appetizer and a fun twist on an old standard, Caprese Salad. Instead of a cold dish of sliced mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil, Chef Leo went the other direction. Using sizzling-hot tomatoes on the vine, fresh from the 900° gas fired oven, he draped them oven balls of mozzarella cheese and garnished them with olive oil, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and a basil-pesto sauce. With the heat of the tomatoes melting the cheese and the punch of the pesto, attendees couldn’t wait to try a sample!

Making a Sizzling Tomato Caprese Salad

From the appetizer course, Chef Leo moved on to prepare multiple main courses– a hand-held Neapolitan Calzone, and several pizzas, including a French-style Tart Flambée Pizza, and a Wood Fired Eggplant Parmesan Pizza. To finish out his final demonstration, he created an incredible Nutella and Banana Cornetto. This final dish is similar to a calzone in concept (dough folded over a filling and sealed on the edge,) but as a dessert, it is filled with sweet, gooey goodness and topped with turbinado sugar, which bakes to a shiny, crisp caramel. The filled dough is curved into a circle, leaving a perfect space for a scoop of gelato, which can be added table-side.

Folding the Nutella and Banana Cornetto to Remove the Air

The Finished Nutella and Banana Cornetto

Technical Tidbits

In between courses and while the food was cooking, Chef Leo used his time to talk about the Napoli oven itself. First explaining how the oven’s gas-assist works so well in restaurant settings for maintaining even oven temperatures, then demonstrating the benefits of the 4″ thick dome and generous insulation for keeping the oven’s interior piping hot and the exterior cool to the touch; Leo proved he knows his ovens! He also demonstrated the weight benefits of using aluminum peels over wooden ones and then switched gears and offered tips for making a perfect tomato sauce. You never know what topic will come up in a live demo, which is part of what makes them so interesting! Always a good sport, he even let two fans take a selfie with him before they had to run off to the airport.

Chef Leo Working the Oven at the 2017 Pizza Expo Demo

Chef Leo Explaining His Techniques Before Serving Up Delicious Pizza Samples

Videos and Beyond

Check out the video below of the whole demo to see the master at work. Then click here to learn about what’s in store at the 2018 show and sign up for email reminders of Leo’s 2018 demos. If you want to join us at the show March 20 – 22, 2018, you will need to register for the Pizza Expo on their website. Find out how by clicking here. We can’t wait to see you!


Tune into Leo's final live oven demo at the International Pizza Expo on a Napoli120 in Las Vegas, NV! 😀🍕

Posted by Forno Bravo on Thursday, March 30, 2017


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