It was an honor for me to be invited to the 2012 Texas Summit. I suspected that Craig would not have expected me to accept the invitation, given my predilection for privacy, but I knew that Craig was an enormous talent (he is truly a Renaissance man) and a master pizza maker. When I learned that tscarborough (Tom, the anarchist) and Gene (whom I had met before) were also going to be there, that iced the deal. I would make the pilgrimage to Pizza Mecca. I was also pleasantly surprised to hear upon my arrival at Craig's home that wheelman (Bill) was flying in from Alabama for the event. That made the event even better. Bill is a true Southern gentleman.
As for the wines, there had been a fair amount of discussion on other threads on the merits of beer versus wine for consuming with pizza, but I knew from some of Craig's photos of the bottles of wine that he regularly consumed, and also that he had drunk Bordeaux wines, that he would be unlikely to turn away an old first growth Bordeaux. It isn't very often that one gets the chance to sample an old first growth Bordeaux. But I also thought that maybe the other guys would like a chance to sample one if they hadn't before. I also wanted to see how the Mouton (and the other wines) would pair with the pizzas. The 1985 Mouton Rothschild was one of the oldest Bordeaux wines in my collection. The prices shown on the tags for the Mouton and for the 1988 Lynch Bages are 1985 prices. As one might expect, today's prices for those wines are much higher. In fact, I did some quick calculations when I got back home that showed that today's average price for just the Mouton (ex taxes and shipping) is more than it cost me to have breakfast at DFW airport, fly to Houston Hobby, rent a car, stay in a very nice hotel, pay for gas for the rental car, and pay for SuperShuttle to and from DFW. Needless to say, the Mouton was a delight. In fact, all of the wines we had, which spanned types and dates, were very good.
The Herradura tequila was one that my daughter-in-law selected for me during a recent trip to Guadalajara, Mexico. She spends a fair amout of time in Mexico and is becoming the family expert on tequilas. What is not generally well known is that in Mexico tequilas are commonly drunk alone, without anything. Just out of a tequila glass (I brought four of them that I picked up in Tlaquepaque for us to use at Craig's place). So, for strictly drinking purposes, you want the best tequilas. Of course, the same tequilas can be used to make Margaritas, but you usually will use cheaper tequilas. I am not much of a drinker but I thought the Herradura tequila was very good.
As for the Craig's pizzas, they were exceptional. They were as good as they look in Craig's photos. I especially liked the Margarita pizzas, the pepperoni pizza (with the Vermont smoked pepperoni slices--the first time I tried them), the sopressata pizza and the cauliflower pizza. Bill also made a killer Margarita pizza, and Tom made some of his exceptional anarchist pizzas using dough that he brought with him by car from the Austin area to Craig's place. And Gene showed his ample pizza making skills. He will be in hog heaven once Tom finishes the oven he is building for him.
There were also a few surprises. One was that I felt that I had known all of the guys for years. There were no hesitancies or fumbling around to make conversation. As one might expect, we covered a lot of ground, not only about pizza and wine and beer and the forum but many personal matters also. Another surprise is that Neapolitan style pizzas are waistline friendly. When I go on trips and consume more food that I would normally consume, I expect to cut back on my food intake when I get back home. That was not the case this time. We went through a lot of pizzas, and drank a fair amount of wine, but when I got back home my weight was the same as when I left. I think the Neapolitan pizzas are perhaps the healthiest pizzas to eat, most likely because the toppings are not overdone, they are used rather sparingly, and can include vegetables, and everything is of the highest quality. In a way, the Neapolitan pizzas seem to fit the Mediterranean diet quite well.
I had a great time and hope that there will be future events where we can have another chance to eat and drink and get to know each other even better.