But if we are talking Giordano's, what is the measuring stick? An objective standard that exists today and can be readily measured against by many tasters, or a historical (apocryphal?) recipe that cannot be verified by anyone, except maybe BTB or someone else who dined there regularly 40 years ago?
You are a straight talker so I always respect what you have to say. If I had my druthers, I would have preferred to come up with a more recent clone of the Giordano's deep dish pizza. The best data and numbers that I had on the Giordano's pizza was back in early 2008, or thereabouts. A lot of the relevant information is reflected in Reply 85 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg53610/topicseen.html#msg53610
. My participation in that thread persisted for about another year but ended in a whimper when I ran out of facts and numbers to be able to continue to reverse engineer and clone the Giordano's deep-dish pizza as it existed at that time. Also, at that time, I did not have as much experience as I now have with how to handle the Nutrition Facts as they were set forth in the abovementioned reply, although it was not for the lack of trying. At one point, I had nineteen pages of notes and calculations.
About three or four years later, as Giordano's went through the travails of bankruptcy, I wondered whether the new owners and managers would change the Giordano's dough formulation and pizza. I thought that that was a distinct possibility but, according to a late 2012 interview I found at http://www.chicagomag.com/Radar/Dish/October-2012/Jack-of-Jacks-on-Halsted-Opens-Wrigley-BBQ-in-Lake-View/
, when the new executive chef at Giordano's, Russell Bry, was asked point blank "You didn't change the pizza?", he replied as follows:No. We embellished the pizza but have not changed the recipe at all. You’d have to be a damned fool to do something like that. We’ve added some new toppings: pesto chicken, barbecue chicken, balsamic onions, bacon, artichokes.
I often hear executives of food-related companies say at critical points in their existence where there were major changes that they did not change any of their recipes. I believe that they say that to soothe and comfort their customers who might be fearful that their beloved foods might be changed, possibly for the worse. But, I have never quite understood what executives mean when they say that they have not changed their recipes. For example, let us say that a given original dough recipe calls for flour, water, salt, yeast and maybe oil and/or sugar. If a later recipe also has the same ingredients but one of the ingredients, such as the flour, is changed from all-purpose to high gluten, has the recipe been changed? What if the brand of one of the ingredients is changed, such as going from a Ceresota flour to a General Mills flour with comparable specs, or if the quantities of one or more of the ingredients is changed, such as lowering the hydration value while increasing the amount of oil, or a decision has been made to drop the sugar, has the original recipe been changed in any of these instances? If a solid fat is replaced with a liquid oil because of trans fats, has the recipe been changed? I suppose if asked it is possible that Russell Bry might have drawn the line at the Giordano's pizza as it existed as of 2012 as far as changes were concerned, but usually executives like to keep a clear lineage that can be traced back to its roots and original founders and recipes. That is why I found Ryan's revelation of the original Giordano's recipes of interest. I was looking for a possible nexus that linked those recipes to future versions. So someone trying the original recipes might see connections to the current Giordano's products.
In due course, when I have more time, I hope to revisit the 2008 Giordano's data to see if I can find clues in it that I missed the last time I was in the weeds trying to make heads or tails out of the facts and numbers I had before me at that time.