Author Topic: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...  (Read 585 times)

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Offline jvp123

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So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« on: March 19, 2015, 09:18:07 PM »
After all the back and forth I said to myself who am I kidding - I need to decide for myself whether or not Di Fara lives up to its reputation.
Dom's is pretty much legendary so I wanted to see him in action.

Here's the scoop.

Sauce looked to be SM toms with seasoning - EVOO, Salt, Oregano?  I could see the chunks of the stems of the tomatoes and it tasted awesome.
The crust had a very nice crunch to it.  I was expecting a black rimmed pizza with a charred bottom (which i didn't really want) and I didn't get that.
Despite being lightly browned and dark it still had a great texture.  It wasn't overly chewy but certainly wasn't tender either.  It actually was just the way I like it.  I'd say a bit chewy and yet crunchy.  Flavor-wise it was great.  It didn't taste sour or like a dough that had spent a long time in the fridge but more like a quicker ferment - maybe they use a bit more salt?  To my inexperienced taste buds, I'd say it was a 1 or 2 day CF.  I saw the dough on the counter and it was a big heavy dough ball that had settled into a heavy looking misshapen disc.  It didn't look light an airy at all.  I think this was evidenced by the not-so-airy crumb but that wasn't a negative in the final product by any means.   

I witnessed a Fior di Latte container on the counter, but also noticed Dom hand grating what I'm sure was Grande WM mozz.  The key here was he was using the slice side of the shredder.  I liked that.

BTW, the tomatoes weren't too wet when being applied to the pie -- not sure if he drains his SM tomatoes first a bit or what. Maybe they aren't SM tomatoes at all?  Not sure.  Mine usually come out of the can too thin to be directly applied or I risk a floppy pizza.  I've been using the PB NY/NJ sauce lately and when I make my next pizza I'm going back to messing with a SM blend. 

He sauced, then cheesed, then parmesan, then oil (quite a bit of swirling of oil).

Finished with fresh cut basil off the stem and even a bit more oil.

Didn't time the bake.  Wasn't fast.  This is a total guess, but I'm thinking over 6 mins.

Bottom line:

I really, really liked it and I'm super glad I gave it a chance.  My friend asked me to rate it and on the spot I said 9.5.  I said I have never given a 10 (not sure why), but i couldn't think how I would change it.  Less oil?  Maybe, but then again I liked the luxuriousness of the oil.  Not sure what else I could say.  Very fresh ingredients, great crust flavor (speculated it was high gluten, bromated flour, but not sure), nice crunch, a bit of chew. 

There are certainly many, many great pies in the NY area and in my opinion this is one of them.
Jeff

Online woodmakesitgood

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2015, 09:52:15 PM »
Great review jvp, the haters should be eatin some crow instead of pizza.  :-D

That pie looks fantastic, I like the crispy, cupped pepperoni.  :drool:
Charles

Offline norma427

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2015, 11:20:05 PM »
Jeff,

Thanks for the great review of Di Fara!  Your pizza looks just right for me in color.

Did you see the name on the big block of cheese?

Norma
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Offline jvp123

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2015, 07:09:48 AM »
Unfortunately Norma I couldn't see the name of the LMWM mozz.  You can see the block cheese in one of the photos. Since the Fior Di Latte was Grande perhaps the block was as well.
Jeff

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2015, 09:33:17 AM »
He uses some buffalo mozz on the pies as well. I'd guess that's what the white spot near the front of the pie is.

Here is some good technical info on the pizza if you are interested: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,504.msg11222.html#msg11222
Pizza is not bread. Craig's Neapolitan Garage

Offline hotsawce

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2015, 10:30:30 AM »
To be honest the round pie is not the reason I would visit Di Fara

Offline Qarl

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2015, 12:43:43 PM »
Wonder if he uses fresh cake yeast or IDY

OOPS... disregard... didn't see Craig's link to the backstory from Pete-zza... interesting read.

« Last Edit: March 20, 2015, 12:45:14 PM by Qarl »

Offline Simple Man

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #7 on: March 25, 2015, 12:45:43 PM »
Great review Jeff!

You mentioned he uses the slice side of the shredder to grate the cheese. Was it a simple box type grater?
Dave

Offline jvp123

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #8 on: March 25, 2015, 12:47:18 PM »
Great review Jeff!

You mentioned he uses the slice side of the shredder to grate the cheese. Was it a simple box type grater?

Yup he did -- I've tried that myself and find it difficult.  I guess my cheese is not cold enough or my box shredder isn't sharp enough.
Jeff

Offline Donjo911

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2015, 07:36:53 PM »
Excellent review, Jeff. I particularly appreciate how you framed the review and the candor about liking what you like! I felt the same way about liking Lombardi's even though many do not. Better to let folks decide for themselves. As for your more recent pizzas, amazing! And I appreciate your conclusions about Camaldoli and what can be done in a home oven. Great all around! Best regards!
Cheers,
Don
I have done wrong.. but what I did, I thought needed to be done.


Offline jvp123

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2015, 10:14:27 PM »
Excellent review, Jeff. I particularly appreciate how you framed the review and the candor about liking what you like! I felt the same way about liking Lombardi's even though many do not. Better to let folks decide for themselves. As for your more recent pizzas, amazing! And I appreciate your conclusions about Camaldoli and what can be done in a home oven. Great all around! Best regards!
Cheers,
Don

Thanks so much Don; that means a lot.  :)
Jeff

Offline HBolte

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #11 on: March 27, 2015, 12:27:11 PM »
Excellent review, Jeff. I particularly appreciate how you framed the review and the candor about liking what you like! I felt the same way about liking Lombardi's even though many do not. Better to let folks decide for themselves. As for your more recent pizzas, amazing! And I appreciate your conclusions about Camaldoli and what can be done in a home oven. Great all around! Best regards!
Cheers,
Don

I agree, nice review. I like Lombardi's too. Can't wait to try Di Fara!
« Last Edit: March 27, 2015, 12:30:30 PM by HBolte »

Offline tinroofrusted

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2015, 04:01:06 PM »
Here is some good technical info on the pizza if you are interested: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,504.msg11222.html#msg11222

Thank you for that link Craig.  I went and reviewed that thread, and discovered that Peter had been figuring out what makes the Di Fara pizza tick way back in 2005.  It once again reminded me of what a treasure chest of information we have here on pizzamaking.com.  Also, I was reminded (again) of the huge contribution which Peter (Pete-zza) has made to this forum and home pizzamaking in general. His dedication to investigation and discovery of information about pizza has really enriched us all. Thank you Peter!  You are truly a Renaissance man. 

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2015, 04:46:15 PM »
Thank you for that link Craig.  I went and reviewed that thread, and discovered that Peter had been figuring out what makes the Di Fara pizza tick way back in 2005.  It once again reminded me of what a treasure chest of information we have here on pizzamaking.com.  Also, I was reminded (again) of the huge contribution which Peter (Pete-zza) has made to this forum and home pizzamaking in general. His dedication to investigation and discovery of information about pizza has really enriched us all. Thank you Peter!  You are truly a Renaissance man.
TinRoof,

I don't know what to say. You are far too kind with your remarks.

But I distinctly remember starting the thread you referenced. Back then, there was very little on the forum about reverse engineering and cloning pizzas of others. But I had read so much about Dom DeMarco and his work at DiFara's that I was enticed to try to see if I could decipher what he was doing. But I was squeamish about it because I was afraid that I might get myself or the forum into trouble by reporting on what I had found. There was another member at the time who lived in NYC and frequently ate at Dom's place and, he too, was afraid to speak up about what he knew of Dom's pizzas, to the point where he would send me PMs to say what he was afraid to say on the open forum. I recall telling him, also via PMs, that we were perhaps safe if we stuck to public information, whether it was in the literature or observed at DiFara's. As it turned out, when I finally met Dom he was quite open about what he was doing.

Of course, I have always been a sucker for reverse engineering and cloning projects. But it has been those projects that have taught me more about pizza making than just about anything else I have done on the forum, and has forced me to look into every corner and turn over every rock looking for clues and leads. It is also some of the hardest and most frustrating work that one can entertain, especially when at the end of the process there is no final answer, just more questions. But the learning process has always been the most important thing to me, and is what keeps me going.

Peter


Offline jvp123

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Re: So I DID go to Di Fara after all ...
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2015, 10:18:58 PM »
But it has been those projects that have taught me more about pizza making than just about anything else I have done on the forum, and has forced me to look into every corner and turn over every rock looking for clues and leads.\

How true Peter.  The more my obsession with pizza making develops the more I realize that there hopefully isn't an "end" to it.  Perhaps the perfect pie doesn't really exist ... I kind of hope it doesn't.  :)
Jeff


 

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