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Offline scott r

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #980 on: September 14, 2020, 11:24:05 AM »
I hope you do, but at the same time its so easy to make this kind of pizza at home you might be let down.   Not that its bad, but just because you have done it.    A lot of these places have oven set at 450 degrees, so no need for special oven.   Its kind of the ultimate home pizza to make along with detroit/sicilian

Offline RHawthorne

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #981 on: September 14, 2020, 12:57:13 PM »
I hope you do, but at the same time its so easy to make this kind of pizza at home you might be let down.   Not that its bad, but just because you have done it.    A lot of these places have oven set at 450 degrees, so no need for special oven.   Its kind of the ultimate home pizza to make along with detroit/sicilian
Thanks for the informed perspective. I'm definitely going to get down to business very soon making some pizzas like this. But while we're on the subject, there's another question that's been on my mind lately, since you're apparently a pretty knowledgeable pizza guy from the American northeast: how is Greek pizza related to bar pizza? Some people talk about the two styles interchangeably, but it seems to me there are at least some cosmetic differences. My understanding of Greek pizza is that it's a pan pizza, but it's a tad thicker than average, it's usually not a small pizza, and it's dough is fermented in deep pans lined with a good amount of olive oil; where bar pizza is thinner, and is baked in shallow pans lined with butter, and is usually sized for one eater. I could pose more conjecture here about the "two" styles (if they are indeed two different styles; I don't know for sure, but it seems to me that they are), but if you wouldn't mind informing me a bit more on this topic, I'd be much obliged.
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Offline scott r

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #982 on: September 14, 2020, 02:07:16 PM »
They are different.   I think I remember writing about this way way back at the beginning of this thread many years ago, but here is my take on it 15 years later after meeting a few old timer pizzaiolos from the area and eating a lot more pizza.  I happen to live in the epicenter of bar pizza south of Boston.   

Bar pizza is only found south of Boston.  Only just in the past year has a place in Boston showed up making it (Hot Box in Somerville MA). I assume it will move north and west eventually.  As far as I have been able to tell it was invented by the Lynwood Cafe in Randolph (still my favorite) and then copied by Cape Cod Cafe, Town Spa, and then many others.   It was very much influenced by Greek style pizza but its not exactly the same.   I will attempt to make some generalizations but as with any regional style that has been around for decades, you see some greek with bar attributes and some bar with greek attributes.  In my opinion bar pizza is better than greek pizza, but its all up to the individual.

Bar pizza is only found in 10-12 inch format.  Greek pizza can be any size (including 10-12)

Bar pizza almost always has some sort of fat in the pan... often vegaline buttery cooking spray, sometimes oil, sometimes crisco. Greek pizza almost always is cooked in a dry pan... both are always cooked in a pan.

Both Bar and Greek pizza use white cheddar in the cheese blend if not 100% white cheddar. 

Bar pizza almost always has cheese and sauce to the edge of the pan creating a crispy burned awesomeness, Greek pizza never has this, and always has an area of crust at the edge- a cornicione.

Sauces can run the gamut of thickened paste to crushed tomatoes.

Greek pizza often has a sweet sauce and a varying amounts of sugar in the crust, where bar pizza seems to be less that way (usually).

The crust on both styles can have fats/milk/eggs in it, but in general bar style pizza is a little more biscuity and flaky, while greek pizza is more pan risen and lighter/fluffier.

Throughout New England Greek pizza is found in every town North, South, and West of Boston and is often called "xxxxx house of pizza".  Just about every town has a house of pizza with the town name in it.  You will additionally find someones first name and then house of pizza as the competitor.  There are of course places making Greek pizza with a different type of name, but I love that there is a house of pizza standard... you are away from home and you see house of pizza in the name... you know what you are getting.  Greek pizza has started to disappear in Boston over the past 20 years, but at one time it was as present as Italian pizza. 



Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #983 on: September 14, 2020, 03:42:26 PM »
Scott,

Can you tell us how the bar pizzas are cut? That is, are they cut in normal triangular slices or are they family cut? And is the term "tavern" used instead of "bar" in some cases, even for the same style of pizza?

Peter

Offline scott r

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #984 on: September 14, 2020, 04:06:47 PM »
all triangles. all bar pizza or bar pies up here

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Offline RHawthorne

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #985 on: September 14, 2020, 04:29:07 PM »
Thanks a lot for the detailed info, Scott R. Some of this is info that I already knew, or had more or less guessed. Some of it is news to me. I really like learning about regional pizza styles and their evolution through the decades. I have one dough ready to go that I will probably make a bar style pizza with tomorrow, but it doesn't have any oil in it. We'll see how that plays out. Incidentally, I also posted today in the cracker crust pizza section about bar pizza and it's similarity to the cracker crust style, and I strongly feel that bar pizza is a topic that desperately needs to have it's own forum category, as it's clearly a well established and distinct style, and there are more than enough knowledgeable people on this forum to get it going. Maybe you could chime in on that one, and give a little support, if you agree?
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Offline scott r

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #986 on: September 14, 2020, 04:33:15 PM »
It may be  tricky to have a bar style category because I think there are a number of regional pizza styles that call themselves bar style or tavern style simply because they were first introduced in pubs to keep people drinking.   The one we talk about here is the one developed in the south shore MA area, but I think there are a number of others that dont have similarities (like that Chicago cracker style).  Where I live there is no question that everyone knows what a bar pizza is, and they are expecting what I have described. They are also always shocked when I tell them that these white cheddar topped small round thin crust pan pizzas are not available all over the USA!  If your from southern MA its almost like this IS pizza.

I always found it interesting that friends from other suburbs to the north and west of Boston had no idea what I was talking about when I mentioned bar pizza, and they would assume I was talking about a small Italian or greek pizza served in a pub.  Now with so much press and national recognition I think more people know about it. I honestly think pizzamaking.com was a big part of this pizza becoming known outside of the area. 
« Last Edit: September 14, 2020, 04:44:23 PM by scott r »

Offline RHawthorne

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #987 on: September 14, 2020, 05:16:56 PM »
It may be  tricky to have a bar style category because I think there are a number of regional pizza styles that call themselves bar style or tavern style simply because they were first introduced in pubs to keep people drinking.   The one we talk about here is the one developed in the south shore MA area, but I think there are a number of others that dont have similarities (like that Chicago cracker style).  Where I live there is no question that everyone knows what a bar pizza is, and they are expecting what I have described. They are also always shocked when I tell them that these white cheddar topped small round thin crust pan pizzas are not available all over the USA!  If your from southern MA its almost like this IS pizza.

I always found it interesting that friends from other suburbs to the north and west of Boston had no idea what I was talking about when I mentioned bar pizza, and they would assume I was talking about a small Italian or greek pizza served in a pub.  Now with so much press and national recognition I think more people know about it. I honestly think pizzamaking.com was a big part of this pizza becoming known outside of the area.
Good points made. Yeah, I think it's safe to say that the bar pizzas made in the American northeast region are sufficiently unique to distinguish them from pizzas made in other areas that might also be called bar pizza. But I would also say that that's all the more reason why they should have their own category- but just call it something like Northeast American Bar Pizza, or something like that. Problem solved. We have categories for NY style pizza, Neapolitan pizza, Chicago deep dish pizza, and California pizza (which barely has any distinguishing characteristics besides the toppings that go on it), so why not have a regional style classification for this one?Other areas may have their own versions of bar pizza, but from what I can tell, they're not nearly as popular, nor as clearly defined. And as you said, bar pizzas of the type we're discussing here have become far more well known and recognizable over the last few years outside their original homes, so isn't it about time for a new and distinct classification on the forum? I think so.
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Offline amolapizza

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #988 on: September 15, 2020, 05:46:06 AM »
FWIW, I asked about getting more Italian thin pizza categories, but it seems like the moderators are loath to add too many categories.  So the Italian Tonda Romana (the thin crispy round Roman style), and the normal Italian round pizza (which is distinct to the Neapolitan and found all over Europe) currently also lack dedicated boards, which makes it hard to know where to discuss them.  It probably also means that they remain relatively unknown and that users often mistake the normal Italian pizza for Neapolitan pizza.

Pizza in teglia, alla pala, pinsa, and foccacia are also all lumped together, and I guess there are some other varieties that would be hard to shoehorn into the existing boards.

On the other hand there are so many varieties of pizza that it would probably be impossible to provide dedicated categories for all of them.  It's such a creative dish that people have taken them in widely different directions since the second world war.
Jack

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Offline RHawthorne

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #989 on: September 15, 2020, 06:36:50 PM »
FWIW, I asked about getting more Italian thin pizza categories, but it seems like the moderators are loath to add too many categories.  So the Italian Tonda Romana (the thin crispy round Roman style), and the normal Italian round pizza (which is distinct to the Neapolitan and found all over Europe) currently also lack dedicated boards, which makes it hard to know where to discuss them.  It probably also means that they remain relatively unknown and that users often mistake the normal Italian pizza for Neapolitan pizza.

Pizza in teglia, alla pala, pinsa, and foccacia are also all lumped together, and I guess there are some other varieties that would be hard to shoehorn into the existing boards.

On the other hand there are so many varieties of pizza that it would probably be impossible to provide dedicated categories for all of them.  It's such a creative dish that people have taken them in widely different directions since the second world war.
I, too have become quite interested in the Tonda Romana style, and either I don't really know how to navigate this site very well, or there just isn't much here on that subject. That's another one that really could use it's own separate board, but like you said, we can't just keep piling on new boards for every different pizza style that exists. I would just really like it if, when I want to research a distinct style, I didn't have to go scouring through hundreds of posts in boards where that style wouldn't necessarily belong. I think some kind of solution could be found, though.
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Offline scott r

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #990 on: September 15, 2020, 10:53:06 PM »
I, too have become quite interested in the Tonda Romana style, and either I don't really know how to navigate this site very well, or there just isn't much here on that subject. That's another one that really could use it's own separate board, but like you said, we can't just keep piling on new boards for every different pizza style that exists. I would just really like it if, when I want to research a distinct style, I didn't have to go scouring through hundreds of posts in boards where that style wouldn't necessarily belong. I think some kind of solution could be found, though.

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Offline amolapizza

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #991 on: September 16, 2020, 05:15:19 AM »
I, too have become quite interested in the Tonda Romana style, and either I don't really know how to navigate this site very well, or there just isn't much here on that subject.

I think there are 2 main threads (maybe some more short ones).  Mine is at: https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=59433

It's based on what I learnt in a thread on the Italian Confraternita della Pizza, which visited Giancarlo Casa at his pizzeria La Gatta Mangiona to learn how to make it.  I really like to make and eat it when I feel uninspired with working on my Napoletana.

In fact it's nearly a relief to make as it's really easy compared to Napoletana.  The exact amount of yeast isn't as critical as you pretty much smash all the air out of the dough. Once I figured out how to stretch and bake it, it feels like child's play to make and it really is very tasty.  Also a hit with my wife, which makes it an attractive choice! :D
« Last Edit: September 16, 2020, 05:18:36 AM by amolapizza »
Jack

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Offline amolapizza

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Re: Greek pizza
« Reply #992 on: September 16, 2020, 05:28:27 AM »
I think some kind of solution could be found, though.

I think possibly the solution for Italian thin crust pizza would be to rename the Neapolitan board Italian Thin Crust, but I don't feel that strongly about it and I don't want to "sabotage" or take away from a very popular board.  Then one could discuss Neapolitan, Tonda Romana, and the normal "Pizza al Piatto" all in the same board.  But I didn't get an traction with this idea so I kind of gave up on it.  I do intend some day to learn more about and to write about the pizza al piatto style which basically is a Napoletana cooked at a lower heat for 2-3 minutes with possibly some fat and/or sugar added to the dough.  But so many things to do, and so little time.. :D
Jack

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