Author Topic: Today's lucky events  (Read 3168 times)

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Offline PizzaBrewer

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Today's lucky events
« on: May 09, 2005, 03:33:00 PM »
As I've mentioned a few times, a local pizzeria has what I consider to be the ultimate sauce, bright and tomato-y, which I've not come close to duplicating.  Despite  being a long-time customer they would never tell me what tomatoes they use.  About a week ago I walked there after midnight (I live about 4 blocks away) to see if I could learn anything from peering in their dumpster.  Unfortunately all the garbage was in tightly-tied black bags.  I heard voices from the property behind so I didn't do any digging.

So I figured it would remain a mystery.  Until this morning, when I was at the drive-thru of the donut shop (next door to the pizzeria) getting my cup of coffee.  Out of the corner of my eye I saw a #10 can rolling around the parking lot of the pizzeria.  So I grabbed it.  It is "Alta Cucina" whole peeled plum tomatoes made by Stanislaus Food, a name I recognized from this board.

Interestingly the can reads: 

"Italian chefs have long prized the unequalled sweet, delicate texture of true San  Marzanos grown and packed in the shadow of Mt. Vesuvius.  During its day there was no better canned tomato in the world.  But because of escalating labor costs, true San Marzanos are, with rare exceptions, no longer available.

That's  why  by using specially selected varieties and growers, Stanislaus has, in my opinion, produced the closest thing to Old Italy in America - Alta Cucina Plum Tomatoes - soft, sweet, tender and ultra-premium quality for the restauranteur who insists on the very best available!"

Now about an hour later I'm on my way to Wegman's to buy some of my favorite mozz. when I look up and see a delivery truck right in front of me with the following printed on the back:

Orlando Foods, distributors of Stanislaus Tomato Products and Grande Cheese. 

!!!  Not only the tomatoes but also the cheese I've been wanting!  So I tailed the driver to his next stop and got directions to the company.  He said there is a "cash and carry" shop there.

I got there and it was a pizzamakers' dream!  I spoke with the lady at length, dropped a lot of names I learned on this board:  Escalon, Sclafani, San Marzano (only  ones they have are Pastene, non-DOP), Caputo (she never heard of it), etc.  I ask about the cheese, Grande whole milk is the most expensive they have at $2.29/lb by the case.  There's also Polly-O and Rosa (cheapest at about $1.69/lb).  She said individual loaves could be bought for $.10 more per pound.

So I'm in heaven.  I picked out 7 cans of tomatoes all together, lots of stuff I've only read about here:

(http://members.aol.com/usedcdguy/private/cans)

I went to the counter to check out when the big problem happened.  I asked for a loaf of Grande cheese, "Oh no, we don't break open cases of that.  It's too expensive and we don't sell much of it."  Bummer.  A case is 8 loaves at approx. 7 lbs. per loaf.  I beg, I plead, I cajole.  She goes back to ask the manager and comes back in about 5 seconds with the answer:  "No."  I seriously consider buying the case.......56 lbs of cheese......no way the wife would kill me.

So close and yet so far.   Well at least I have lots of new tomatoes to play with.

Damn.  $2.29 a pound.  I'm paying $5.99 a pound at Wegman's for my favorite, I hoped to be able to compare.

---Guy
Man does not live by bread alone.  There's also tomato, cheese and pepperoni.


Offline Nathan

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #1 on: May 09, 2005, 04:30:41 PM »
Hey that's awesome.  ;D

A local foodservice here sells Escalon and Grande.  The tomatoes I can get by the can (#10).  But the cheese I have to get by the case.  They say to use it within 42 days or whatever but I got a case of the 50/50 blend shredded and used just about all of it within the 42 days.   :P  42 days was May 6th and I have a little bit left but not much.  I think I paid about 2.81 per pound and the case was 30 pounds.
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Offline Arthur

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #2 on: May 09, 2005, 05:33:38 PM »
It's amazing how getting closer to that "great" pizza is so much better than most things in the world.

What cheese do you get at Wegmans? 

Offline MTPIZZA

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #3 on: May 09, 2005, 06:34:38 PM »
Pizzabrewer, great job on your discovery I loved reading about your findings...Let us know how the different brands are, I've never heard of 7 to 11 tomatoes just the 6 in 1...Keep us posted...

Offline PizzaBrewer

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2005, 07:24:59 PM »
Nathan:  30 lbs is better than 56, but that's still a LOT of cheese!  This distributor has shredded also, if I could find a couple people to go in on a case it might be doable.  Anyone else in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Poconos PA area?

Arthur:  Cappiello (www.cappiello.com), a *REALLY* good, flavorful mozz.  It's much better than the standard cheeses (Sargento, Polly-O, Kraft, etc.).

MT:  It was strange how I found that can and then an hour later I saw the truck.  All those tomatoes are either Escalon or Stanislaus, according to this forum they're the 2 best domestic tomatoes.  I haven't tried any of them yet so I'm eager.
Man does not live by bread alone.  There's also tomato, cheese and pepperoni.

Offline Nathan

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2005, 07:38:24 PM »
The pizza place my cousin works at uses the Stanislaus.  They use the 7/11 and another one of their products.  They have really good sauce too.  I haven't been able to compare the two brands side by side but I know they are both excellent tomatoes.
"Pizza with pineapples?  That's a cake."

Offline bakerboy

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #6 on: May 11, 2005, 02:33:19 PM »
Pizzabrewer, thats a good find.  In the pizza shop i ran we used the 7/11 and the saporito together for our sauce.  Really consistently good products in my opinion.  I can also recomend the alta cucina whole peeled tomatos.  These i would deseed and marinate in fresh basil, garlic, evoo, salt, and pepper and top the pizzas with these when someone was looking for a more textural component out of the tomatos.

Offline Arthur

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #7 on: May 11, 2005, 03:49:22 PM »

Arthur:  Cappiello (www.cappiello.com), a *REALLY* good, flavorful mozz.  It's much better than the standard cheeses (Sargento, Polly-O, Kraft, etc.).


are you near a costco? - you should try the fresh mozz in plastic there.  Best I have found for pizza (in a home oven).

Offline duckjob

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2005, 03:59:16 PM »
pizzabrewer, If you are looking for grande cheese, vernscheese.com will sell by the loaf. It is $3.19 a pound plus shipping. With standard shipping a 7 pound block ended up costing me about $34.  It is great cheese, and I am in a similar position to you, decent moz is like $6 a pound out here, so it is worth it. By the way, the grande is not listed on the website, just call and tell them what you want.

Offline PizzaBrewer

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #9 on: June 22, 2005, 01:20:25 PM »
I still haven't tried all the tomatoes, it can be hard to justify opening a #10 can!  I can say however that the Alta Cucina whole tomatoes are the best canned tomato I've ever tried.  By far.  Better even than all the various San Marzanos I've tried. 

I had bought 2 cans and finished them up last week.  They made some great pizza sauce and spaghetti sauce.  I've been thinking about them a lot so yesterday I went back to the distributor.  This cash-and-carry is the best thing going, I think I'm going to spend a lot of time there.  It's mostly all pizza and Italian oriented, and there's everything you could want at very good prices.  All kinds of imported spaghetti and pasta for $0.60 per pound.  Lots of olive oil, canned artichokes, olives, sun-dried tomatoes, every spice imaginable, 50 different types of canned tomatoes, pizza tools and equipment, pesto sauce, balsamic, hot sauce, soups, gravies, large bags of onions, and on and on.

I ended up buying a case of the Alta Cucinas for $17.95 (six #10 cans), a case of San Pellegrino Limonata soda ($12.25 for 24 cans), 4 lbs. of assorted pastas ($2.40).  There was a half loaf of Polly-O whole milk mozz. in the cooler, I bought it for $2.14 per lb. ($7.50 for a 3.5+ lb block).

I highly recommend everyone to find your local pizzeria/food service distributor(s), call them up and ask if they have a cash-and-carry showroom.  You'll be amazed.

Oh, and they didn't charge any sales tax.  I can see this place becoming as important to me as the local supermarket.

---Guy
Man does not live by bread alone.  There's also tomato, cheese and pepperoni.


Offline bakerboy

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2005, 08:32:26 PM »
I highly recommend everyone to find your local pizzeria/food service distributor(s), call them up and ask if they have a cash-and-carry showroom.  You'll be amazed.
Pizzabrewer.  You make a good point.  I can safely say that if someone came in the pizza shop i ran and asked for a case of Alta Cucina or other type tomato product, i'd definately order them one, no problem.  Same with the cheese.  The only problem i would have is if someone wanted to buy ONE can.  My sauce recipe was a 6 can recipe or a 12 can recipe.  Since cases are 6 #10 cans, it kind of throws a wammy into the routine.  I would instead advise them that if they wait for the thursday delivery, they'd get 6 #10 cans of really good tomato product for under $20.00.  I think thats a good deal.
By the way, $17.95 for a case of Alta Cucinas is a very good price.  I paid $19 something a case.
Point being, i think alot of guys running a pizza shop would do the same.  Just catch them on a tues. or Wed. or some time when its not crazy busy.  They're ordering cases and cases anyway, whats one more. 

Offline snowdy

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #11 on: June 26, 2005, 03:31:35 AM »
if you want to try some grande cheese and only want to order 5 pounds at a time or so.

use penn mac:
http://www.pennmac.com/

call them up and order :)

the bag is small enough to fit in your freezer no prob!

Offline tjacks88

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Re: Today's lucky events
« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2005, 09:09:51 AM »
What type of Grande are most people using, the 50/50, whole milk, skim?


 

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