Author Topic: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA  (Read 55384 times)

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Offline tdough111

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #80 on: August 27, 2011, 01:11:44 PM »
Hi guys,

I currently saw this thread and about Luigis and wanted to help out. I live about 5 blocks from luigis and just joined this forum. I took a ny pizza tour while in New York and since then have been hooked on making pizza. I go to Luigi's about once a week and can scout somethings to find out more info to reverse engineer this pizza for my home. My only observations is that I believe they do a cold ferment as I have seen them go into their walk-in and bring out dough trays. Also with my limited knowledge of dough making I have a tough time believing the hydration level is 65 %. I could be wrong but when I watch them stretch the dough, it does not seem sticky at all and they don't seem to have much trouble with it. Could be wrong though. If any of you has suggestions for things I should look for then that would greatly help as I am pretty new to making pizza


Offline Essen1

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #81 on: August 27, 2011, 01:56:55 PM »
Hi guys,

I currently saw this thread and about Luigis and wanted to help out. I live about 5 blocks from luigis and just joined this forum. I took a ny pizza tour while in New York and since then have been hooked on making pizza. I go to Luigi's about once a week and can scout somethings to find out more info to reverse engineer this pizza for my home. My only observations is that I believe they do a cold ferment as I have seen them go into their walk-in and bring out dough trays. Also with my limited knowledge of dough making I have a tough time believing the hydration level is 65 %. I could be wrong but when I watch them stretch the dough, it does not seem sticky at all and they don't seem to have much trouble with it. Could be wrong though. If any of you has suggestions for things I should look for then that would greatly help as I am pretty new to making pizza


Tdough111,

Thanks for helping out. That's great!

If possible, the next time you go there perhaps you can observe/time how long they bake an individual pie. We already know that the baking temp is between 525įF to 550įF.

Mike

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Offline scott123

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #82 on: August 27, 2011, 02:29:59 PM »
Travis, as Mike mentioned, a bake time would be invaluable.  If possible, bring a stopwatch with you so you get a fairly precise time.  Also, try, if possible, to get the bake for a plain cheese pizza, but if you have to time a pie with toppings, make note of the toppings.

If you could do that, it would be a huge help.  If you want to go the extra mile, here are some suggestions.

1. Bring a still camera.  Ask their permission if you can take a few photos.  If they say it's okay, take a zoom photo of the:

bags of flour
mixer
walk-in (if possible)
and anything else that catches your eye, like empty/discarded packaging

2. Bring a video camera. Ask their permission.  Film a pizza from the point it goes into the oven to when it comes out. Zoom in on as much of the back of the shop as possible, doing a slow pan to get detail.

3. Buy a dough ball, and, as you're buying the ball, press for fermentation details.

You: Hi, I'd like to buy a dough ball.
Them: Sure thing
You:  When was the dough ball made and how long can I refrigerate it?
Them: (details)
You: What's the best amount of time to refrigerate? Do you refrigerate the dough in the pizzeria? How long? I really love your crust and am trying to match it as close as possible at home.

4. Dumpster Dive

If you can get a chance to see a cheese wrapper, that would help, as would an empty bag of flour.  A camera would be nice, but, be careful.  If someone sees you taking photos of their trash, they might get a little suspicious.  Considering that almost every indicator points to Luigi stealing the recipe from Bronx and using it for his own place, I would expect them to be a little paranoid of another competitor doing the same thing. If you're going to dumpster dive, do it on another day than any inside filming or dough ball questioning.

Offline Jet_deck

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #83 on: August 27, 2011, 02:54:11 PM »
When leaving with a couple slices in a to-go container.  Say "I'm wanting to give the leftovers to Aunt Sally.  She is allergic to bleached flour.  Could you look at the flour sacks and tell me if it is bleached or not."  This way if you don't get the money shot of the flour sacks, we at least know something more than we know for sure now.  Look for empty sauce containers too. :D
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Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #84 on: August 27, 2011, 03:35:57 PM »
This is awesome.  You guys need to write a book on "The art of reverse engineering pizza - Secrets of the professional home pizza baker".   ;D


Offline Essen1

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #85 on: August 27, 2011, 03:58:05 PM »
Here's another blog entry with two great pics of Luigi's whole pie, which shows the outer crust up close and a slice pic, which shows the extreme thinness...

http://5-ds.blogspot.com/2008/07/pizzeria-luigi.html
Mike

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Offline norma427

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #86 on: August 27, 2011, 04:05:38 PM »
Hi guys,

I currently saw this thread and about Luigis and wanted to help out. I live about 5 blocks from luigis and just joined this forum. I took a ny pizza tour while in New York and since then have been hooked on making pizza. I go to Luigi's about once a week and can scout somethings to find out more info to reverse engineer this pizza for my home. My only observations is that I believe they do a cold ferment as I have seen them go into their walk-in and bring out dough trays. Also with my limited knowledge of dough making I have a tough time believing the hydration level is 65 %. I could be wrong but when I watch them stretch the dough, it does not seem sticky at all and they don't seem to have much trouble with it. Could be wrong though. If any of you has suggestions for things I should look for then that would greatly help as I am pretty new to making pizza


tdough111 ,

As Mike and Scott123 posted, I also think it would be awesome if you could observe and take pictures if possible.  ;D It does sound like the dough is a cold fermented or at least part of a cold ferment, if you saw them take dough trays out of the walk-in.  That is a great observation already! 

Thanks for helping on this thread!  :)

Norma
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Offline Essen1

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #87 on: August 27, 2011, 11:22:07 PM »
Looked again at the video...specifically after the dough was balled...and I don't think it's condensation. I think they're brushed with oil, perhaps just for the video shoot but nevertheless...that's oil, not condensation.



Mike

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http://thehobbycook.blogspot.com/


Offline Essen1

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #89 on: August 28, 2011, 02:08:06 AM »
I made two batches tonight with different hydrations and one with oil in it.  I'll post the formulas once I got the pies out of the oven and see how the crust was...  ::)  

Took some pics of the different doughs.

Luigi 1 is 63% hydration, Luigi 2 is 57% and then both doughs oiled and ready to go into the fridge.

« Last Edit: August 28, 2011, 02:11:23 AM by Essen1 »
Mike

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http://thehobbycook.blogspot.com/


Offline Essen1

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #90 on: August 28, 2011, 04:40:03 PM »
Thought I'd post the two formulas I'll be testing out today now instead of waiting until later. Hopefully they'll come close to what Luigi Agostini produces. I might record a short video of the crunchiness, if there actually is any, of the crust when cutting into it.

Numbers for Luigi #1

Flour (100%):
Water (63%):
IDY (.4%):
Salt (2%):
Sugar (2.5%):
Total (167.9%):
Single Ball:
517.33 g  |  18.25 oz | 1.14 lbs
325.92 g  |  11.5 oz | 0.72 lbs
2.07 g | 0.07 oz | 0 lbs | 0.69 tsp | 0.23 tbsp
10.35 g | 0.36 oz | 0.02 lbs | 1.85 tsp | 0.62 tbsp
12.93 g | 0.46 oz | 0.03 lbs | 3.24 tsp | 1.08 tbsp
868.6 g | 30.64 oz | 1.91 lbs | TF = N/A
434.3 g | 15.32 oz | 0.96 lbs

Numbers for Luigi #2

Flour (100%):
Water (57%):
IDY (.4%):
Salt (2%):
Oil (2%):
Sugar (3%):
Total (164.4%):
Single Ball:
528.35 g  |  18.64 oz | 1.16 lbs
301.16 g  |  10.62 oz | 0.66 lbs
2.11 g | 0.07 oz | 0 lbs | 0.7 tsp | 0.23 tbsp
10.57 g | 0.37 oz | 0.02 lbs | 1.89 tsp | 0.63 tbsp
10.57 g | 0.37 oz | 0.02 lbs | 2.35 tsp | 0.78 tbsp
15.85 g | 0.56 oz | 0.03 lbs | 3.98 tsp | 1.33 tbsp
868.6 g | 30.64 oz | 1.91 lbs | TF = N/A
434.3 g | 15.32 oz | 0.96 lbs

Both doughs were rested for about 45 mins on the counter directly after coming out of the bowl. No shaping or balling up at that time. Just covered them with a clean damp kitchen towel before dividing them into individual balls. I then brushed them with a little bit of Smart Balance oil, covered them with plastic wrap and into the fridge they went where they are still hanging out.

More later...
Mike

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Offline Jet_deck

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #91 on: August 28, 2011, 06:20:23 PM »
Looks good Mike.

I called both PL locations in San Diego and both said that they used unbleached, enriched, High Gluten flour.  Both locations said that the dough rests in the cooler about 24 hours. ;D
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Offline norma427

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #92 on: August 28, 2011, 07:43:41 PM »
Looks good Mike.

I called both PL locations in San Diego and both said that they used unbleached, enriched, High Gluten flour.  Both locations said that the dough rests in the cooler about 24 hours. ;D


Gene,

Good find!   ;D  All this time we were speculating on whether the flour was unbleached or bleached and if the dough was cold fermented or not.  Just with two phone calls you solved the mystery.   :-D

I am interested in seeing Mike's pies.  :)

I looked at the Pendleton flour technical information, http://www.pfmills.com/filebin/pdf/technical_informational_booklet_v1-opt.pdf
on page 6 the Power flour, and whether unbleached or bleached has a protein of 13.0-14.5% and an absorption rate of 65-66%, like Peter posted before.  I wonder if Luigiís uses the directions on page 11 on how to mix the dough for a thin crust pizza.  There is information on the technical information booklet on page 15 on how to make a straight dough.  On page 8 it tells how to use ADY.  

Norma

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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #93 on: August 28, 2011, 08:33:50 PM »
I was away out of town this weekend but it looks like there was a lot of activity on this thread.

Gene, if Luigi is cold fermenting his dough, or unless he went to cold fermentation after the video was produced, then it strikes me that doing so contradicts the exchange that he had with Guy as reported in the last paragraph of Reply 16 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,14928.msg150322.html#msg150322. However, as I noted in the last paragraph of Reply 33 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,14928.msg150824.html#msg150824, at a time where we were speculating as to what kind of fermentation Luigi was using in the video, it is possible that Luigi's dough does double duty, that it, it can be used to make a same-day room fermented dough (which might confirm what Luigi says in the video) or to make a cold fermented dough of one day's duration. The dough would be exactly the same, with the same amount of yeast. In fact, before I left town this weekend, I was going to propose that someone with the Power flour make two identical dugh balls and ferment one at room temperature and cold ferment the other for one day and compare the results to see which, if either, replicates Luigi's dough.  

With respect to the use of unbleached flour, if Luigi is using the Power flour, then that means that the possible bag sizes are 25, 32 and 50 lb bags. I am ready to say that it is unlikely that the bag size that Luigi is using is 25 pounds. Over the weekend, I did a Google search to find photos of 25-pound bags of flour juxtaposed with something that would put the bag size in perspective. Examples of photos that I found include http://www.flickr.com/photos/23026320@N00/1508731385/ and http://pbandj27.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/img_2428.jpg. If those photos are indicative and rule out the 25-pound bag size, then that leaves 32-pound and 50-pound bags (http://www.pfmills.com/power-flour-products-1.php). Of these choices, I think I would go with 32 pounds. If this is the size bag that Luigi uses, then that should make the job of calculating the percents for yeast and salt easier, assuming that what the video shows with respect to the yeast and salt is correct.

On the matter of the 65% hydration, I don't think that it follows that a dough with 65% hydration has to be sticky. I refer everyone back to the Jet's video at
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5lxLBp4-8dE" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5lxLBp4-8dE</a>
and to Reply 48 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,14928.msg150954.html#msg150954 where I discussed same. The dough in that video has a hydration of about 65%. To my eye at least, the dough does not seem sticky. Moreover, it will be noted that the mixer shown in the Jet's video, for example, at 2:42 in the video, appears to be the bigger brother to the mixer that Luigi uses but with an 80-quart bowl capacity that is capable of accepting up to 50 pounds of flour, which is the standard flour bag size that Jet's uses. As I mentioned before, if one has Power flour on hand, it should be easy to conduct some tests to determine how much water is needed to achieve the dough consistency as shown in the Luigi video. Maybe I can do some research over the next day or so on the Power flour to see if what I have been saying on this score is plausible.

I also agree with scott123 that there is more than two gallons of water used to make the dough shown in the video, for the reasons he mentioned, and especially if the correct bag size is 30 pound or 32 pounds. Otherwise, one would just empty two gallons of water into the mixer right from the bottles themselves.

Peter
« Last Edit: August 28, 2011, 09:45:40 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline Essen1

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #94 on: August 28, 2011, 11:33:12 PM »
Dough Mixing procedure for Luigi clones & first outcome...

Luigi 1 & 2:

Dissolved sugar and yeast in all the water (95įF got both doughs) and let it sit until it started to foam. I combined the salt and flour, then added it to the water and started the mixer on Speed 1 until everything was incorporated, around the 2-minute mark. I set the mixer to Speed 2, the time for 10 mins and let her do its thing.

I did everything the same with Luigi dough #2, except that I added the oil to the water before I added the flour with the salt. I used the same speeds and times for dough #2.

Both dough were then pulled out of the bowl and received a counter rest for 45 mins. I then divided them, balled them up, placed into a slightly oiled box, brushed the tops with oil and covered them with plastic wrap. Then they went into the fridge, bottom rack, for 24hrs.

The first bake was Luigi #1 (63% hydration). I chose the Mona Lisa pie for this.

The pizza was baked at 633įF stone temp for 10 minutes. The crust, coloration-wise, looked almost identical to Luigiís except the rim was a tad puffier then I was shooting for. It had the exact same crunch, floppiness at the end and char on the underside. Overall, I think it was pretty close. Used my neighbor and his GF as guinea pigs and the feedback was extremely encouraging.

Some pics of Luigi #1. Luigi #2 is still to come...
Mike

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Offline Essen1

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #95 on: August 28, 2011, 11:33:37 PM »
And the rest of the pics...

I think I used a bit too much cheese. Gotta go lighter with the next one.
Mike

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Offline Essen1

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #96 on: August 29, 2011, 12:11:18 AM »
Looks good Mike.

I called both PL locations in San Diego and both said that they used unbleached, enriched, High Gluten flour.  Both locations said that the dough rests in the cooler about 24 hours. ;D

Gene,

Thanks a bunch for giving them a call and pick the brain! Much appreciated.

I love this reverse engineering stuff. It's always a challenge, shows me where I stand and if I can pull it off. However, I am hoping we're helping PizzaEater101 because we sort of hijacked his thread. It's exciting, though :)

Anyway, thanks a lot for the info, bro.
Mike

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Offline PizzaEater101

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #97 on: August 29, 2011, 12:45:25 AM »
Gene,

Thanks a bunch for giving them a call and pick the brain! Much appreciated.

I love this reverse engineering stuff. It's always a challenge, shows me where I stand and if I can pull it off. However, I am hoping we're helping PizzaEater101 because we sort of hijacked his thread. It's exciting, though :)

Anyway, thanks a lot for the info, bro.

Hey there Essen1 , oh no, you all are certainly not high jacking my thread.  I'm enjoying this to the fullest extent.  I first posted this Luigi pizza subject to see what everyone thinks of this place from the Diners video and it blossomed into a reverse engineering project and to tell you the honest truth, well, I'm glad it did.   I'm enjoying reading everyone's post and now you had it come to fruition when you made a Luigi pie.  I'm pretty sure that Luigi himself is amused by this whole thing.  I would not be surprised if some how he stumbled upon this discussion and is reading this and smiling that the reverse engineering project is going on.  The sincerest form of flattery is imitation.  Not saying you are imitating him or his pie, but you guys are doing a fine job of cracking the Luigi code and I'm sure he likes that.  

So to be honest you are actually helping me because I love reading up on the process of cracking a pizza such as you all are who are involved in it.  I'm in awe of everyone who is working on this.  I'd never figure any of this out.  Essen1, you are doing a great job and the pics of your pie really show how well you did on cracking his pie.   :chef: :pizza: :D

Offline norma427

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #98 on: August 29, 2011, 07:19:39 AM »
Mike,

Your first formula and resulting pizza, for your Luigiís clone, looks a lot like a real Luigiís pizza. Glad to hear your neighbor and his girl friend used as guinea pigs gave up feedback that was encouraging. Great job!  ;D

What did you think of the Luigiís clone in comparison to other pizzas you have made? What kind of flours or flours did you use in your formula?   What size pizza did you make, and what TF did you use?  Since your baking temperature was 633 degrees F, do you really think Luigiís bakes his pies at that high of temperature and for that long?

Norma
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Offline norma427

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Re: Pizzeria Luigi in San Diego, CA
« Reply #99 on: August 29, 2011, 08:03:32 AM »
James, or anyone else that is interested,

I wanted to add another report for Luigiís pizza, but this was back in 2009, from a blogger.
http://thesandiegopizzainvestigation.blogspot.com/2009/07/our-first-suspect-pizzeria-luigis.html

The same blogger did also report about Bronx pizzeria, if anyone is interested in seeing what the blogger said.
http://thesandiegopizzainvestigation.blogspot.com/2009/08/bronx-pizza-new-york-style-pizza-by.html

Why I am posting what this blogger had to say about the pizzerias, is because the blogger calls the blog "The San Diego Pizza Investigation".  :-D  8)

Norma
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