Author Topic: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?  (Read 5771 times)

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Offline toddster63

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Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« on: March 30, 2012, 09:20:26 PM »
This is probably a giant stab in the dark...

Does anyone still have the Jeff Varasano-Patsy's NY yeast starter/culture still going? I would love to get some more of this awesome culture...

Had it about 5 years ago, and it made the most wonderful crusts—wonderful oven spring like only wild yeast can do, but never with acid or sour notes in flavor.

I currently have the Camoldi starter going, but sometimes it makes such a sour-acid crust! It can make a good loaf of San Francisco sourdough seem mild in comparison!
« Last Edit: March 30, 2012, 09:22:10 PM by toddster63 »


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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2012, 09:40:10 PM »
There are still some samples around, but Patsy's did not use a culture. It's CY. http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,4125.msg35344.html#msg35344

CL
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Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2012, 10:43:45 PM »
IF by chance Patsy's is using mother dough and keeping the dough at room temps, it may be possible that over the years a wild yeast has set up camp as PFTaylor mentioned.  But this is a big IF IMO.  Whatever the truth is, there is a Patsy's starter floating around, although it might be more appropriate to rename it the Verasano Starter.   :-D

The one I received from another member for testing purposes is definitely not commercial yeast, although at it's peak activity it does have a sweet taste to it.  CY, in a leaven at it's peak, smells sweet BUT does not have that same sweet taste.  If the leaven is even lightly sweet, it is mostly likely due to the dough break down in the leaven from enzyme activity.  

However, the sample that I have, it doesn't have great leavening ability as compared to ischia or my just made grape starter.  Toddster, PM me if you want a dry sample of what I have, you'll have to reactivate it.  
« Last Edit: March 31, 2012, 09:55:50 AM by Jackie Tran »

Offline scott r

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2012, 10:47:39 PM »
I have talked to those guys and they claim no mother dough at patsys!   They are just doing a very basic one day cold ferment.    Jeff was wrong about the live cultures there, but he did capture something nice.   

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2012, 10:50:16 PM »
A couple years ago, I went by Patsy's EH and picked up a dough ball. I bought it back to Houston, cultured it and played with it for a couple weeks. I got no sense of anything beyond baker's yeast.

CL
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Offline scott r

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2012, 10:55:16 PM »
holy %$# craig, you passed my post count!    

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2012, 11:03:36 PM »
holy %$# craig, you passed my post count!    

Sorry  :-[
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Offline dmcavanagh

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2012, 11:17:16 PM »
 In the "reverse engineering Patsy's" thread, it was pretty much obvious that the conclusion was Patsy's did NOT use a sourdough culture. Myth is always more interesting then reality. ::)
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Offline dmcavanagh

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2012, 11:19:23 PM »
I've gotta get my "post" count up! :-D
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Offline toddster63

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2012, 01:12:17 AM »
Yeah, well, whatever... I remember all this rigor-moral about Patsys and the controversy if they used anything other than commercial yeast, and blah-blah...

Call the Varasano/Patsys starter what you want, I do know this much: my friends and family still ask (3 years later) for the "old" great pizza I use to make—the kinda sweet Italian tasting pizza. Mmmmm... Well, I still have the 850F stone, still have the Caputo flour... But I lost that Patsys culture when moving across California, and my Neo pizza has never been the same... And like Varasano, I always combined it with CY.... I also always got the best results with this culture on a hot, hot stone—850F and up...

Here's what it produced for me:
« Last Edit: March 31, 2012, 02:04:11 AM by toddster63 »

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #10 on: March 31, 2012, 07:57:31 AM »
In the "reverse engineering Patsy's" thread, it was pretty much obvious that the conclusion was Patsy's did NOT use a sourdough culture. Myth is always more interesting then reality. ::)

David, while Patsy's doesn't employ a starter to make their dough, whatever culture that is passed around as the Patsy's starter is indeed a real starter.  No myth about it whatsoever.   No doubt it came from the starter Verasano started from Patsy's dough.  Whether it picked up some wild yeast strain somewhere who knows.  

So Patsy's using a starter is a myth, yes.  The Verasano starter, is not a myth.  It is alive and well...and spreading.

Toddster, nice looking pie.   In a different thread, there is a hotly debated controversy of whether a starter can retain it's unique characteristics over the years or if the starter will just be taken over by local yeast or change in different geographical locations.   I find it interesting that both you and I had similar experiences with this Patsy's stater despite having used it years apart.  I just got it recently and we are both describing a starter, that at it's peak of actvity, has a sweetness to it and mediocre leaveing strength.  Hmmm,  interesting indeed.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2012, 08:01:55 AM by Jackie Tran »

Offline scott r

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #11 on: March 31, 2012, 08:31:32 AM »
Sorry  :-[

No, don't be sorry, I love it!   Im just realizing how little time I have had for the forum in the past few years, and you new guys (in my eyes) are just kicking in so much great information.   

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #12 on: March 31, 2012, 09:28:58 AM »
Toddster, nice looking pie.   In a different thread, there is a hotly debated controversy of whether a starter can retain it's unique characteristics over the years or if the starter will just be taken over by local yeast or change in different geographical locations.   I find it interesting that both you and I had similar experiences with this Patsy's stater despite having used it years apart.  I just got it recently and we are both describing a starter, that at it's peak of actvity, has a sweetness to it and mediocre leaveing strength.  Hmmm,  interesting indeed.

Yes, I agree this is very interesting particularly in light of the other discussion (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,18283.0.html). I'd say it suggests that a) you can capture a starter from the air (the possibility that the sourdough culture was established by something that Varasano did to it should also be noted), 2) a wild sourdough culture can  take over a bakers yeast culture (but will not always [if the takeover of the culture is coming from Patsy's air], the dough I bought from patsy's didn't seem to have any sourdough qualities), and 3) that sourdough culture can resist takeover from other cultures (yours sounds similar to Todd's and differend from other popular cultures).

CL
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Offline Jet_deck

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2012, 09:35:07 AM »

So Patsy's using a starter is a myth, yes.  The Verasano starter, is not a myth.  It is alive and well...and spreading.


Just to reiterate, I asked Jeff if he did really get something from there.  He said, "I got something, I don't know what it is, but I got something."
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Offline DNA Dan

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #14 on: April 13, 2012, 11:09:26 AM »
Does anyone know if Jeff was living in NY at the time? Or was he already in Atlanta? If this were indeed something captured perhaps it is indigenous to the area he first cultured the starter.

Offline David Deas

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #15 on: April 13, 2012, 06:42:26 PM »
When Varasano's crust is on, it's on.  It's inspiring.  Almost impossible to beat.  It's got this fruity note.  No hint of sourness.  And then the characteristics as far as chew and crisp?  Dead on just like in your imagination.

Even when his crust is off it's good.  But when it's on, it's a thing of beauty.

Offline DNA Dan

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #16 on: April 13, 2012, 10:22:55 PM »
I sure wish I could try his pies. Is there any other reason to visit Atlanta?


Offline David Deas

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #17 on: April 13, 2012, 10:39:04 PM »
Antico Pizza Napoletana.

Offline David Deas

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #18 on: April 15, 2012, 02:52:25 PM »
I want to add, though, that I haven't been to Varasano's in a while.  Don't really know how the pizza is these days.

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #19 on: May 11, 2012, 04:20:10 AM »
Yes, I agree this is very interesting particularly in light of the other discussion (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,18283.0.html). I'd say it suggests that a) you can capture a starter from the air (the possibility that the sourdough culture was established by something that Varasano did to it should also be noted), 2) a wild sourdough culture can  take over a bakers yeast culture (but will not always [if the takeover of the culture is coming from Patsy's air], the dough I bought from patsy's didn't seem to have any sourdough qualities), and 3) that sourdough culture can resist takeover from other cultures (yours sounds similar to Todd's and differend from other popular cultures).

CL

The most likely source of microflora (yeasts and lactobacillis) is the flour itself....

On the Varasano acid dough , if I remember correctly, it was not capable of leavening properly by itself and therefore needed commercial yeast. This suggested that it was just that, an acid dough, with probably a strong lactobacilli's like microflora and not so strong yeast type microflora. If going around somewhere it has picked up a stronger strain of yeast by one of the flour used, them it may have further developed. Overall, if it does a job and give a nice aroma, then it may be good enough to use, just do not over romanticize that whole thing.

Offline pythonic

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #20 on: September 04, 2012, 03:00:01 PM »
I sure wish I could try his pies. Is there any other reason to visit Atlanta?

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Offline Jet_deck

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #21 on: September 04, 2012, 04:40:12 PM »
Antico Pizzeria  http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,9828.0.html
also http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,17496.0.html
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« Last Edit: September 04, 2012, 04:54:49 PM by Jet_deck »
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Offline Jet_deck

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #22 on: September 04, 2012, 04:52:04 PM »
Shakey's pizza -- Warner Robbins
Paula Deen's - Savanah (3 hour drive and worth it)
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Offline widespreadpizza

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #23 on: September 04, 2012, 09:25:06 PM »
Lost my Varasano starter years ago,  moving soon away from my WFO.  Gonna need every bit of flavor I can get in a electric.  Who's got my back on a rebuild of that starter?  It is damn good,  and I for one never used yeast with it.  no problems with spring at all,  just used room temp fermentation.  Anyone?  Millhouse?  -Marc

Offline pizzaneer

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Re: Varasano/Patsy's Culture...?
« Reply #24 on: September 04, 2012, 10:59:45 PM »
I'd sign up to give it a try too.  I've cultured wild about 10 times with wildly varying results.
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