Author Topic: A Mano Ridgewood NJ  (Read 23692 times)

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Offline David

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A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« on: May 17, 2007, 07:46:44 PM »
Had the chance to get to this new Neapolitan today and was very happy.It is everything that a great Pizzeria and dining establishment should be IMO.Fresh,focused and comfortable.No pseudo Italianesque cliches here in the design,just a refreshingly clean,modern approach.The Classic Neapolitan pizza is as good and better than many I've had to date in the US.
To top it all they serve homemade Pear gelato.(Pear Gelato for some reason is difficult to find...and happens to be my favorite.) and know how an espresso should be served.I had the chance to chat with Roberto for a while in between ,and it is a pleasure to meet such a generous and modest host.
I'm sure he'll be extremely successful and deservedly so.......Try it.
If you're looking for a date... go to the Supermarket.If you're looking for a wife....go to the Farmers market


Offline scott r

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2007, 01:44:11 AM »
He is a great guy.   You can tell within 2 minutes of meeting roberto that he is totally dedicated to pizza.

Did you get to meet his visiting pizzaiolo David?

Offline tonyp0387

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2007, 04:55:15 PM »
I did not think it was that good, They had stupid 16 year old waitresses and there pizza was way to watery its definitely authentic but does not taste that good. luzzo's or Una pizza is way better in my opinion . I think the place is all hype just because it naples style pizza but its just not that good. The gelato is very good and the owners are very nice though.

Offline David

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2007, 12:05:32 AM »
 General Topics / Sauce Ingredients / NEED A GREAT COMMERCIAL SAUCE  on: April 05, 2007, 11:18:33 PM 
Hi Fellows, I just bought a pizzeria in NJ and trying to find a great sauce recipe.
 
Where is your place Tony,i'ld like to check it out?
If you're looking for a date... go to the Supermarket.If you're looking for a wife....go to the Farmers market

Offline David

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2007, 12:07:53 AM »
Did you get to meet his visiting pizzaiolo David?

No,he was off yesterday.
If you're looking for a date... go to the Supermarket.If you're looking for a wife....go to the Farmers market

Offline scott r

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2007, 01:38:13 AM »
I did not think it was that good, They had stupid 16 year old waitresses and there pizza was way to watery its definitely authentic but does not taste that good. luzzo's or Una pizza is way better in my opinion . I think the place is all hype just because it naples style pizza but its just not that good. The gelato is very good and the owners are very nice though.

I just wanted to say that on both visits I had excellent service, and one time it was a very young waitress. She was very attentive and I was actually surprised (for a brand new restaurant) that she knew all 10 or so pastries that were in the case behind here without looking at a cheat sheet. 

I think that the pizza at A Mano is just as good as, but different than Luzzo's or UPN.   I find it difficult to compare UPN and A Mano because UPN does not offer toppings at all. Even though all three of these pizzerias are Neapolitan style the dough at each of them couldn't be more different.  Roberto seems to use dough that is fairly early in the fermentation process, and that combined with his hydration/dough thickness/fork mixer creates a slightly dense dough with a texture that is unique to his restaurant. Even though he is using Caputo flour the crust at A Mano actually hints a tiny bit at NY style pizza, which should be welcome in the Ridgewood area.  I think Roberto is a very creative chef even though he is following in the footsteps of the traditional Neapolitan techniques.

I have said this in another thread, but anyone that visits this pizzera should think about trying one of the calzones. What is really special about this place are the toppings, and the calzones allow roberto to really exploit this strength.  I have been finding that I crave his calzones on a regular basis.   The seasoned ricotta is beyond compare, and all the meats and vegetables are honestly as good as the best I have found in the US (Pizzeria Bianco and Il Pizzaiolo).  If you are nice to Roberto he may even make you one of his "house special" calzones that are not on the menu.  I wish I could remember what the 4th ingredient was, but I know one of the calzones he made me had some of the best artichokes I have ever tasted, mushrooms that were of the absolute highest quality and flavor, and salami from Academia Barilla that was just as good as what I had in Naples. Each topping was given a separate section of the calzone instead of piling them all in on top of each other. One thing stands in my mind after two visits, Roberto is not afraid to season and flavor his more creative pizzas and calzones.  Do yourself a favor when you try this pizzeria and don't just order a marinara or margherita.

I am excited to try your pizzeria tony, and compare.  In my opinion Roberto is one of the top Pizzaiolo's in the country.  I just wish I lived close enough to frequent his establishment.

Offline tonyp0387

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2007, 04:00:43 PM »
I am under attorney review right now for my pizzeria i am buying in Phillipsburg NJ it is called Stephens I am buying the whole building and the business, the pizza there now is  horrible. I am pretty critical when it comes to pizza, but my pizza is going to be diffrent then A Mano its a NY style pie I plan on using All trumps High Gluten flour Non bromated and unbleached its comparable to the KASL flour.I am getting a good deal on my tomatoes LaValle San Marazano tomatoes $22.00 a case 6 # 10 cans mixed with some 6 in 1 tomatoes which i believe are better then the 7 11 by Stanislaus I am not using Full Red or Bonta pizza sauce which i think just stink. I will not use Grande Cheese because i plan on sealing a 16" pizza for $9.50. Phillipsburg is a very blue collar community and i would like to use the best Cheese which is grande in my opinion, but I'm not seeling a pizza for more then $10.00 there for I can not, but i will be using very premium toppings nothing canned, fresh sausage with fennel which i make my self no casing/ fresh mushrooms and fresh peppers nothing canned. As for A Mano maybe i had a bad experience But i doubt it. They cook a pizza in  1 minute i timed it. But its just a soupy mess. they have to change the tomatoes in my opinion which i think are not good. But they are very nice people I talked to the owners for about a half hour they even gave me some free Gelato. I have to say its the only authentic Neapolitan pizza in NJ. But it just does not come together nicely. Maybe I'll give it another try but i doubt it, its about 45 minutes away from me and i would rather go to Luzzo's because at least i know what I'm getting. Has anybody ever tried Scroritino's they use to be in Perth Amboy NJ, they moved to South Amboy I've been meaning to try it out. The one in Perth Amboy use to make the best Pizza in NJ. The sauce was out of this world. I wish i knew what they used.

Offline ilpizzaiolo

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2007, 12:18:35 AM »
la valle san marzano tomatoes in the quantity of 6 # 10 cans should be $ 18 to $18.95.... You might want to check around with some other distributers  on the tomatoes as well as all of the other products you intend to buy. As far as the tomatoes they are using at a mano pizzeria, He is actually using a very good tomato, its just that when baking a pizza in one minute, alot of things need to work together for it to come out right. A true neapolitan pizza is less forgiving the regular pizza... It is posible when you had the soggy pizza that any one or all of the following things could have happened...  the dough was under or over proofed, the dough was not at room temp, the cheese was to watery, the oven temp was too high, the oven temp was too low, it may have been a few inconstant cans of tomaotes that made the sauce watery, the pizza maker may have applied to much sauce or cheese.... etc.... overall, it is the most authentic neapolitan pizza in the tri-state area because he gets more things right than luzzo's or una pizza napoletana.... my big gripe with luzzo is the salt level, it is just to low....

Offline tonyp0387

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #8 on: May 20, 2007, 12:56:12 AM »
Illpizzaiolo Do you mind me asking where you can get LaValle for $18.00 a case.

Must Stanislus or Escalon products go for $20 when i heard $22 directly from the company  LaValle USA in Teterboro NJ I thought it was a steal, Its a much better product then any tomato grown in California in my opinion. Thanks

Offline ilpizzaiolo

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #9 on: May 20, 2007, 09:23:35 AM »
penn mac sells them wholesale for $18.95 (also, to clarify,these are not D.O.P.) I do buy alot of stuff from them, but regardless, if they can be freighted from new york/new jersey to PA and be sold to me at that price, you definitely should not pay more. The $18 dollar quote was from a pittsburgh company called jimmy and nino who was trying to undercut penn mac's price. Which is never a reason to switch companys because they will just raise the price of something else when your not looking to off set their minimized profit margin. Also you may want to sample the tomato products that orlando foods sells.. in a recent conversation with them, i was told that their tomato product was very similar to la valle...

-  ron


Offline David

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #10 on: May 20, 2007, 05:53:42 PM »
Has anybody ever tried Scroritino's they use to be in Perth Amboy NJ, they moved to South Amboy I've been meaning to try it out. The one in Perth Amboy use to make the best Pizza in NJ. The sauce was out of this world. I wish i knew what they used.

Sciortinos was mentioned to me before by a few people.I believe it was a victim of 'eminent domain' and they moved to a location opposite the railway station at S.Amboy.
I seriously hope this is not the best Pizza in NJ,or I shall have to stop  eating Pizza or have a frontal lobotomy.It's what I would loosely describe as a Greek / Bar style pie.The sauce to cheese ratio is well balanced,but the sauce is undoubtedly ( overly) artificially sweetened,to the point that any natural flavor from the toms is killed and the Pizza tastes primarily of sugar.This is particularly noticeable and prevalent when the pizza has cooled down.No other additions (if any) could be recognized - usually a good point IMO,as nothing can beat the bright,fresh taste of a quality slightly acidic sauce. The crust I found to be overdone ( slightly burnt ) and bread like.This didn't surprise me for this style though.Didn't someone once say something along the lines of ..."No one went broke underestimating the taste of the general public" ?
If you're looking for a date... go to the Supermarket.If you're looking for a wife....go to the Farmers market

Offline BenLee

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2007, 02:21:41 PM »
Sciortino's isn't any where near the best pizza in NJ.  I recently went there and it was packed.  We started off with soup, I got Pasta Fagioli and my gf got a seafood chowder.  Both were amazing.  The salads were really good too.  And, unfortunately, the pizza looks 100 times better than it tastes.  My mouth started watering as I saw everyone else getting their pies.  Their toppings looked amazing.  I totally agree with the sauce.  They must use 50% tomatoes, 50% sugar.  Overall, from the appearance of the pizza, it looks like one of the best tasting pies ever.  But I wouldn't even put it in a top 50 in NJ as far as taste goes.

Offline tonyp0387

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2007, 04:20:20 AM »
I haven't been there in years but when i was eating there a lot I use to eat a whole pepperoni pizza i thought it was great.  Do you know if they are still using a coal oven like the one in Perth Amboy? That was propably a big part of it.

Offline Barry

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #13 on: June 17, 2007, 06:19:40 AM »
Quote from Scott r

Quote
I think that the pizza at A Mano is just as good as, but different than Luzzo's or UPN.   I find it difficult to compare UPN and A Mano because UPN does not offer toppings at all. Even though all three of these pizzerias are Neapolitan style the dough at each of them couldn't be more different.  Roberto seems to use dough that is fairly early in the fermentation process, and that combined with his hydration/dough thickness/fork mixer creates a slightly dense dough with a texture that is unique to his restaurant.

I have to agree with you Scott - Roberto's base was a little denser, buy still great.

After overcoming my disappointment at travelling all the way to the USA to visit Phoenix and finding Pizzeria Bianco CLOSED (apparently to collect an award in NY), I finally made my way to New York, and visited 5 of the best. The whole dining experience at A Mano was great. I introduced myself to Roberto, and he did everything he could to ensure that we enjoyed ourselves. He also invited me into his kitchen and showed me his (fabulous) fork mixer. Once the restaurant became quiter, he invited me behind the counter, and we made a few pies together. We also enjoyed some great ice cream which he is very proud of.

Roberto is a great guy and a real gentleman. He answered all my questions about his dough preparation, and techniques.
He does battle a little with his English, but we understood each other well enough. I wish him much success !

Kind regards.

Barry in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Offline scott r

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #14 on: June 18, 2007, 01:38:31 AM »
Barry, I couldn't agree more.  He is a wonderful person, and his passion for food is electric.  I can't wait to get back there myself!  I am really really craving one of his special calzones.

Offline scott r

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #15 on: July 15, 2007, 11:59:35 PM »
mano has been blowing my mind with the fair prices, fried dough, TOP notch ingredients and this crazy 4 section calzone/pizza thing that is hard to describe.  Roberto it taking a piece of dough and folding ricotta and either ham/salaumi/artichokes/or mushrooms into each corner.  The middle which is left unstuffed is still sauced and cheesed like a normal pizza.  what you get are 4 mini calzones and a normal margherita all in one pie.  The flavors are amazing. He is also making pinweels, stuffed pizzas, and calzones in addition to the normal pizza and the 4 section calzone.  On top of all this his gelato is just as good as what I had in Positano Italy.  I don't think it can get any better.  Last night I had a spicy chocolate gelato and it was outstanding.  Amano definitely gets the most creative pizzeria award!

Offline Barry

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #16 on: July 16, 2007, 10:58:37 AM »
Hi scott r,

Am I right in assuming that Roberto makes his "stuffed pie" by placing a mixture of ricotta cheese and one of each of artichoke, salaumi, mushroom and ham, and places a bit of each mixture in each "corner", and then folds the "corner" over towards the centre ?

This would mean that the base would now be about half the original size, and sort of square in shape ?

This half size (folded double) base is then dressed with sauce and mozz, and baked normally ?

If my assumptions are correct, it sounds very tasty !

BTW, I did 10 awesome pizzas last night for family and friends, after my return from a visit to the Taj Mahal in India.

Kind regards.

Barry in Johannesburg, South Africa

Offline scott r

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #17 on: July 16, 2007, 11:20:27 AM »
yes, you are correct.   He has to cook the calzone/pizza in the mouth of the oven and also on the peel to slow the cooking time, otherwise the thicker parts of the pizza would be underdone while the outside would burn. 

Offline Barry

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #18 on: July 19, 2007, 05:22:52 AM »
Hi scott r,

Thanks for the tip on "cooler cooking".

By thicker part, do you mean the sauce and mozz and the cornicone folded into the centre ?

I am definitely going to try this one soon.

Kind regards.

Barry

Offline scott r

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Re: A Mano Ridgewood NJ
« Reply #19 on: July 19, 2007, 07:29:10 PM »
yes the folding over of the dough on the edges creates an unusually thick (for neapolitan dough/oven temps) crust in spots.


 

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