Thanks, John, you did a really great job of capturing my back fat. All the folds are there!
Seriously, though, what an amazing time!
I got to meet John's wonderful family, including his incredibly gracious and knowledgeable wife, adorable daughter, and his celebrity pet, Molly. John's cousin also joined us, and, beyond, the pizzamaking bliss, the conversations I had with his cousin and wife were fantastic. I'm not mentioning any names
but in my time on this forum, I've heard about more than one wife who 'tolerated' their husband's obsession. John's wife is the exact opposite of that. She beams with pride when she talks about John's pizza and all the time he's put into perfecting his dough- and well she should.
It's interesting. Since yesterday, I've been mulling over John's crust in comparison to the top NY Neapolitan places, and while my lack of Neapolitan eating experience still hampers my perspective, making crust preferences difficult, I have worked with a lot of dough, so judging the dough is a lot easier. When I imagine the absolute perfect dough to work with- it's Johns. And I don't think this is just a Caputo/fork mixer thing, because I've felt Roberto's dough and it didn't feel like this. John's dough is just so supple and luxurious. This is sexy dough. Very very sexy dough.
As I said before, my opinions on what makes the best Neapolitan pizza are still in their infancy. It's also incredibly difficult to judge two Neapolitan pizzas side by side because the differences tend to be minimal, and those differences tend to tremendously subjective. All this being said... if I had John's crust, baked in his oven, even at freakishly high temps on one side and Keste and Motorino on the other side, I'd reach for John's. If I were pitting John's against Forcella, that might be a toss up. Both seem to have something more- a wow factor. With John's, that suppleness in the dough makes it's way to the finished crust.
And this is in his present oven. John does some amazing things with his ovens, and I don't think a Neapolitan oven would be a huge improvement, but even if it's just a tiny improvement, that could put his pizza even further into the stratosphere.
John, thanks, again, for including me.