This specifically starts with cheese. It's becoming obvious that the hard-core guys don't believe that "cheese is cheese". Grande comes up a LOT. So, having never had Grande, what is so flipping awesome about it? Don't get me wrong, I know some cheese brands are better than others, but in the big scheme of things, I'm not sure I've ever found a "real" cheese I didn't like. Fake is fake, real is real. Past that, you've got part-skim, whole milk, etc. But what makes Grande cheese so good, in your opinion? Is it the taste, the physical characteristics, or what?
Should the time come for me to open my own place, I know a dough sheeter will be my method. I like thicker dough and as such, a sheeter is required to get it sheeted out. I may very well sheet smaller than finished size and hand-toss some of the diameter, but the first step will be a sheeter.
Then there's the toppings... I struggle with this. One man's great topping is another man's trash, especially when it comes to pepperoni. Some folks want oily, cupped, and crispy, and others believe it should be as non-greasy, flat, and soft as possible. Some folks like sausage (sorta) crumbles, others want REAL sausage.
Sauce isn't a mystery to me so I'm okay on "getting it" with sauce. But even crusts are open for interpretation. I'd love to be able to duplicate Pizza Hut's thin and crispy crust. It's a good crust, IMHO. To others, it's pure crap. Since you rely on fermenting for the actual flavor of the crust, most crust has little "real" flavor. There are certainly varying degrees of bland, but I feel most bread is bland. Sauce should "burst" with flavor, the toppings should as well. But how do you get a crust to "burst" with flavor? My breadsticks are quite acceptable as are the sub rolls that come from my dough (I can call it mine--- it's Lehman's, but don't tell). Or is crust more about texture than vibrant flavors?