Author Topic: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.  (Read 7366 times)

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Offline pdog

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Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« on: December 06, 2013, 04:40:01 PM »
Hello...... Has anyone ever tried to clone Johnny's on west 33rd in mount Vernon outside NY city?

Love the pizza, and would love to give it a go to clone, but I am simply not that good at reverse engineering projects.


Offline Mmmph

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2013, 04:45:10 PM »
Jeff Varasano rates it highly.

http://www.varasanos.com/PizzaRecipe.htm
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Offline chasenpse

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2013, 11:44:16 PM »
I'm not too far from Mt. Vernon, used to work there. If I'm ever in the area I'll make sure to give it a try and report back!
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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2013, 06:23:33 AM »
This has been on my must visit list for quite some time.  I was hoping to include it on one of the tours, but the Northern location makes it a bit too inaccessible. It's only a few minutes away from Yonker's Pepes, and not too horribly far from Patsy's, so a tour might be worthwhile, but I'm kind of off touring at the moment.  On my last two trips into Manhattan, the city was pretty much a parking lot.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2013, 06:26:37 AM by scott123 »

Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2013, 12:13:28 PM »
Here is what we are shooting for in Johnny's pie.

I tried to dig some info out of the pizza makers, but was told to fly a kite. 

Here is what I observed. 

Cooking style:

 standard deck oven

I thought the dial said 550, but its a decent distance back from the counter. The start the pizza directly on the deck, then pull and move to a screen to finish baking the top of the pie. 

The pie:

Crust is crisp, and thin but still has a nice chew to the crust.  I would say the thickness factor is .075 or less.

The cheese melts nicely into the sauce to the point I can not truly tell if the place the sauce on top of the cheese or not.  I need to pay closure attention to the pies being made on my next trip. 

I believe they had bags of all trumps visible through a door in the back, but all I could see was flour with red lettering and blue images on the bags. 

I may be in the area again next week, and I will have to do a recon visit. 

Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2013, 12:22:04 PM »
Jeff Varasano rates it highly.

http://www.varasanos.com/PizzaRecipe.htm

Good list he has there.  I laughed because he used the same photo on his site as I found on my google search.

I agree with his ranking of Johnny's as number one.  I love it...... If I lived closure to the city this would be a daily meal for me. 

Online TXCraig1

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2013, 01:16:06 PM »
Here is what we are shooting for in Johnny's pie.

I tried to dig some info out of the pizza makers, but was told to fly a kite. 

This might help: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1262.msg59857.html#msg59857
"We make great pizza, with sourdough when we can, commercial yeast when we must, but always great pizza."
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2013, 03:12:55 PM »
pdog,

As I understand it, General Mills' practice is to use red lettering for its flour bags that contain bromated flour (see All Trumps bag below). I believe the unbleached, unbromated version of the AT flour comes in a bag with green lettering.

Peter

Online TXCraig1

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2013, 05:03:19 PM »
Maybe it was this one. Not widely publicized - made specially for the true NY aficionado.
"We make great pizza, with sourdough when we can, commercial yeast when we must, but always great pizza."
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Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2013, 01:48:55 PM »
Maybe it was this one. Not widely publicized - made specially for the true NY aficionado.

Hahaha..... I hear Scott has been banned in over 350 countries....... something about pedaling dangerous ideals and flour products. 
« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 06:46:34 PM by pdog »

Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2013, 01:54:44 PM »
pdog,

As I understand it, General Mills' practice is to use red lettering for its flour bags that contain bromated flour (see All Trumps bag below). I believe the unbleached, unbromated version of the AT flour comes in a bag with green lettering.

Peter

Thanks Peter.

I am going to try and get another pie or two there before the end of the year.

During my visit I will attempt to get a closer look at the back of the house........ " Oh this isn't the way to the bathroom" kinda of thing.  A disguise may be required to assure I do not receive a lifetime ban for my intelligence gathering activities.  haha




« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 06:48:01 PM by pdog »

Offline pdog

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Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #12 on: December 08, 2013, 02:31:45 PM »
This is where I have started. 

So I mixed up a poolish last night to get the process started.  I used poolish style doughs for the first 3-4 years of my pizza making...... I do not know why I steered away from this process.  In honesty I do not have a good reason for doing so, and the flavor from a poolish based dough, in my opinion, is always superior to a dough without this step.

I am going to give the pizza a try tonight to see how I did. 

Here is the formula I am going to start with for my attempts:

Poolish:

315g Flour
315g warm (85 degrees) water
1/8 tsp yeast

66 degree rise for 18 hrs

Secondary Mix:

705g flour
307 g water
20 g salt (2%)
15g Veg. Oil (1.5%)
10 g sugar (1%)
1/4 tsp yeast ADY

Mixing Process:

Pour Poolish into standard Kitchen Aid with C hook
Dissolve yeast completely into warm water, 85% degrees F, and pour yeast mixture into the poolish.
Mix on 1 until poolish and water are completely incorporated with each other
Add oil to poolish/yeast mix, and mix for 1 minute on lowest setting

Mix salt, flour, and sugar to fully incorporate the dry ingredients.
Add 75% of the dry ingredients to the poolish solution
Mix on 1 for 2 minutes, and then move to 2 for 2 minutes
Incorporate the remaining 25% of flour into the dough
Mix on 2 for 6 minutes

Total Dough:

1020g flour (100)
622g water (61%)
20 g salt (2%)
15g Veg. Oil (1.5%)
10 g sugar (1%)
3/8 tsp yeast

Bulk fermentation:

Move Dough to counter, or cutting board
Cover and let rest 10 minutes
Complete 2 stretch and folds (opposing directions)

Let rest 45 minutes
Complete 2 stretch and folds (opposing directions)

Let rest 4 hrs
Ball out bulk dough
Fermentation of 4 hrs

I ball out the dough to 400gs for a 16 inch pizza.  The thickness factor works out to .07. (I think my math is not all that great)  This should end in having very litte extra dough with this recipe.

I'll be backing these tonight.  I will post pictures when I complete them. 

I am going to bake these indoors on my steel.  I would try half steel/ half BS, but its currently snowing and this I am sure would lead to lots of flames and not many pizzas hitting the stone in tack. 

« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 10:08:49 PM by pdog »

Online TXCraig1

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #13 on: December 08, 2013, 02:39:43 PM »
I think what goes on top of this pie may be as key as the crust. I look forward to reading your recon.
"We make great pizza, with sourdough when we can, commercial yeast when we must, but always great pizza."
Craig's Neapolitan Garage

Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #14 on: December 08, 2013, 02:56:26 PM »
I agree;

Here's my plan for topping:

From bottom to top;

sliced mozzarella:

From judging Johnny's and there building, service, and attitude;  I went cheap as I could find at the deli. Had them slice the cheese just shy of an 1/8 inch. 

Sauce:

I bought a # 10 can of whole peeled Sogno Toscano Selection tomatoes.  I am going to crush these to a fine/thin sauce with salt and olive oil.

Top Cheese;

I am going to used shredded Moz, and Pov with fine grated Romano.  Again cheep cheeses...... nothing fancy for this pie. 

Condiments:

Black pepper


Thoughts??
« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 02:58:33 PM by pdog »

Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #15 on: December 08, 2013, 03:32:40 PM »
here is the bulk Dough from the dough recipe I started with:

I added no bench flour to shape.   I find that I do not need any bench flour for any dough hydration under 63-65% depending on flour.


Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #16 on: December 08, 2013, 03:34:35 PM »
These pictures show the starting dough balls:

I shape again without flour for this level of hydration.  The only flour I add is a light cover over the balls to prevent the clear wrap from sticking to the balls.  I have moved to a bench rise in place of a container rise for non-cold ferment rise doughs.  I believe this aids in keeping the balls inflated during shaping.

« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 06:07:13 PM by pdog »


Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #17 on: December 08, 2013, 08:26:24 PM »
Well the results were not great.

Those tomatoes are not good!  I will not buy them again.  They had a hint of dirt taste to them, and were not sweet in the least.

Pic one:

Top shot of the pie

Pic two:

crumb shot

Pic three:

bottom shot.


Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #18 on: December 08, 2013, 08:32:32 PM »
more photos:


scott123

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #19 on: December 10, 2013, 12:51:45 PM »
Pdog, that is a very respectable first attempt. One temperature tweak and you should be almost there.  What temp did you pre-heat your steel to?  Assuming Jeff's quoted 4:30 bake time is correct, then you should be shooting for 525 or maybe even 500.

Some reconnaissance will definitely help.

Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #20 on: December 10, 2013, 04:58:36 PM »
Thank you for the kind words:

I agree Scott.  The bottom was cooking to fast. 

I throw the screen under the crust after the initial toss onto the steel (roughly 2 mins) and still the crust was too dark for my taste.

Next steps:

Ditch the tomatoes...... they were awful!!!!  To the point I thoroughly checked the can to be sure it was not punctured. 

Reduce temp to 525.

Have the Mozz cheese sliced half as thick.

I am also going to reduce the dbw by 30gs.  The cornice, I can not believe I am saying this, was to puffy, and had to much spring compared to Johnny's.  This could be due to the first stage with the rolling pin of their dough as reported by others. 
« Last Edit: December 10, 2013, 05:03:55 PM by pdog »

Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #21 on: December 10, 2013, 05:10:11 PM »
Pdog, that is a very respectable first attempt. One temperature tweak and you should be almost there.  What temp did you pre-heat your steel to?  Assuming Jeff's quoted 4:30 bake time is correct, then you should be shooting for 525 or maybe even 500.

Some reconnaissance will definitely help.

What does your keen eye tell you a thickness factor is for this pizza? I think .07 was close, and my handling skills somewhat messed it up.  I am curious to see what your thoughts are on the matter.

Next time I go I am going to get a large to go, and I am going to bring it home and take measurements and lots of pictures.

Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #22 on: December 13, 2013, 06:38:41 PM »
Another attempt tonight.

I was fairly happy with the dough performance so I did not make any changes.

I did however reduce the dough balls to 380.  I also reduced the temp to 525. 

The pizza came out very thin for 16 inch pies.

Here are the results. 

Toppings: From bottom up;

Mozzarella sliced 1/8 of an inch
Provolone cheese sliced 1/8 of an inch
Tomato sauce 7/11  - I hit them with a stick blender to smooth them out
Romano cheese large grated
Pepper
Olive Oil

Picture of how I topped the pie. 
« Last Edit: December 13, 2013, 06:44:06 PM by pdog »

Offline pdog

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #23 on: December 13, 2013, 06:39:33 PM »
The results. 

Offline Johnny the Gent

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Re: Johnny's in Mount Vernon.
« Reply #24 on: December 13, 2013, 07:30:03 PM »
That looks very good. Did you use a rolling pin at all?
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