It’s about the heat. With temperatures between 750° and 800°F a wood-fired pizza oven delivers an exceptional pizza that simply cannot be matched by a regular oven. High heat creates flavors and textures that cannot be duplicated when pizza is cooked more slowly. A pizza cooks in under three minutes right on the oven floor. The crust is crisp on the bottom, the cheese is exquisitely melted and slightly browned, and the toppings are cooked to perfection. A thing of beauty, pure pizza bliss.
Our dear dear longtime friends, Chip & Pat, invited us all over for a pizza party. My nephews were thrilled to go swimming in their pool and hang out with the world’s most adorable dogs, Sophia & Luca. We brought along some pink wines to taste as well as ingredients for some pizzas. Chip had already prepared the dough and the pizza oven was heating up. We were looking forward to Pat’s caramelized onion and feta pizza, a perennial favorite…
~ THE WINES ~
It’s about the heat. Summertime is the time for pink wine. Summer and rosé are an unbeatable combination. Refresh the palate. Quench that thirst. Dry pink wine pairs wonderfully with our pizzas.
Domaine de la Fouquette Cuvee “Rosee d’Aurore” Cotes de Provence 2010 – Salmon hue, tropical fruit aromas of pineapple and grapefruit, flavors of strawberries, watermelon and citrus. Balanced acidity, a good quality rosé from Provence. Made of the classic cépages Grenache and Cinsault, but accented with Rolle (called Vermentio in Italy and other Southern France appellations), which adds citrus aromatics, crisp acidity and a touch of minerality. $17
Domaine Le Galantin Bandol Rosé 2010 – A complex rosé, aromas hint of watermelon and rose petal. Medium-bodied, lively with crisp acidity. A classic Provencal rose with delightful fresh berry fruit flavors. It is composed of 50% Cinsault, 25% Mourvedre and 25% Grenache. 10% of the wine is saignée (bled from the must), the rest come from grapes treated as for making white wine. Médaille de Bronze Paris 2011 $20 (Lori Lynn’s #1 pick).
Pascal Jolivet Sancerre Rosé 2009 – The Pascal Jolivet Rosé is a blend of direct press and saignée production method rosé wine made from 100% Pinot Noir grapes. This Sancerre rosé had forward aromas of red fruits, it’s full of elegance and subtlety. $25 (Pat & Kristy’s #1 pick).
Domaine de Jarras Gris de Gris Languedoc 2010 – The Gris de Gris is created from a blend of Grenache (80%), Cinsault (15%) and Carignan (5%) varietals coming from the vineyards raised on the Lion Gulf Sands. The Lion Gulf Soil, comprised of sandy sediments transported by the sea and winds along the Mediterranean Coast, is very unique. Light fresh flavors, especially strawberry jam. $10
~ THE PIZZAS ~
~ THE POOL ~
It’s about the heat. We’re goin’ swimmin’ first.
~ THE OVEN ~
It’s about the heat. Chip begins the process of firing the oven about four hours before the party.
He lights almond wood in the center of the oven and progressively adds more wood as the hours go by.
Chip’s giant toothbrush, called a spazzola, is a fireproof brush used to
sweep ashes away from the cooking area.
When the temperature is 850°F, Chip moves all the wood and embers
to a corner of the oven with an aluminum ash stick.
He uses the spazzola to sweep the ashes from the cooking area.
A long handled wooden pizza peel, buccia di legno pizza, is used to transfer the pizza into the oven.
At this point the oven has cooled slightly to 800°F.
Pizza is placed on the buccia di legno pizza.
Chip, our master pizzaiolo, positions it in the cleaned area of the oven.
With a short forward jerk, he slides the pizza onto the hot oven floor.
A quick pull of the paddle backward completes the maneuver.
Our pizzaiolo watches the pizza, moving it around and turning it with the palo di infornare,
which is made of aluminum, to help it cook evenly. In three minutes, it’s cooked to perfection!
~ PIZZA RECIPES ~
Lightly brush pizza dough with olive oil. Spread a thin layer of pizza sauce.
Sprinkle with shredded mozzarella and cooked bacon pieces. Top with sliced roma tomatoes.
Cook for about 3 minutes, turning as necessary.
Toss chopped romaine lettuce with buttermilk ranch dressing. Top pizza with lettuce.
Enjoy a slice of BLT Pizza by the pool!
PAT’S CARAMELIZED ONION & FETA PIZZA
Put about 2 T. olive oil in a skillet with a teaspoon of sugar and two large Vidalia or Maui onions, sliced, over medium low heat for – really about 30 minutes. Move them around as they begin to soften – do not let brown quickly – cook very slowly for best results. If you cook them fast they will brown or burn as you well know and loose their plumpness and shape. Make 2 batches for one large pizza.
Brush dough with olive oil then cover completely with caramelized onions.
Top with feta cheese, then hand the pizza off to the pizzaiolo!
HALF MUSHROOM & BURRATA, HALF SMOKED SALMON & CREMA
Sauté mushrooms in a bit a olive oil, add fresh thyme leaves and season with salt and pepper. Brush pizza dough with a small amount of olive oil. Spread rough chopped burrata on one side and Mexican crema on the other. Top burrata with mushrooms and fresh thyme sprigs. Top crema with slices of roma tomato then smoked salmon, caperberries, and brined green peppercorns.
White-hot: inside the wood-fired oven.
Don’s #1 pick – smoked salmon & crema pizza.
KIDS’ CHEESE & JUST A FEW PEPPERONI PIZZA
Brush pizza dough with a small amount of olive oil. Spread pizza sauce over the dough.
Taking the job of pizzaiolo seriously.
Kids’ cheese pizza, gets a few pepperoni, but “not too many.”
Don & Jett learning the pizzaiolo skills.
Big hit: Kids’ Pizza.
What’s better than made-from-scratch wood-fired pizza after a swim on a hot summer day?
When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, that’s amore.
When the world seems to shine like you’ve had too much wine, that’s amore.
5 STAR MAKEOVER COOKING GROUP
Natasha, the 5 Star Foodie & Lazaro of Lazaro Cooks! host the 5 Star Makeover Cooking Group, an outstanding monthly event for “sharing ideas and creating gourmet makeovers of selected classic dishes or flavor combinations.”
August’s theme is pizza and as a result there are some of the most creative pizzas in the blogosphere being posted this month. Thanks to our dear friends Chip & Pat, my contribution to this month’s Cooking Group Event is the WOOD-FIRED PIZZA. Natasha and Lazaro will be posting a round-up on Friday – pizza aficionados must stop by!
That’s amore! Grazie Chip & Pat!
40 thoughts on “Wood-Fired Pizza & Pink Wine POOL PARTY”
Grazie, LL, for the very interesting, informative and eye-tasty post!
I’m uber jealous of three things in this post. 1. The wine. 2. the brick oven. and 3. Those pizzas! They all look amazing!!
I’m also jealous of the wine, the pizza oven and that carmelized onion and feta pizza! Great post LL!
That pizza oven is unreal! Beautiful pies!
Take out can go out of business now.
These look fantastic! When we lived in Sicily – nothing could beat the wood fired pizzas! How wonderful that your friends have a pizza oven!
All looks good. I like the pizza oven.
what a gorgeous oven!! how lucky! the pizzas look beautiful and I’m sure they tasted amazing
It is a wonderful thing to have friends with both a pool AND a pizza oven. What a fun, delicious time you all had.
I wish! The pizza all look nice.
Those little puppy dogs are adorable! But I digress… there’s something special about a wood-fired pizza and these look wonderful. I shouldn’t read your blog when I’m hungry, Lori Lynn.
I have a friend in Seattle that has a woodfure oven. The best pizzas come from that oven!!!
I have one word: jealous! I guess I need to make better friends, or at least ones with pizza ovens!!!! I love wood fired pizzas and everyone of those looked great!!!!! Buzzed ya!
What a great post! That wood-fired pizza oven is incredible! I love all the different pizza variations…I would definitely have trouble deciding which one to start with!
Oh how I would love a wood fire pizza oven! What a great time and some amazing looking pizzas…the mushroom and burrata- smoked salmon and crema is pure perfection!
All your pizzas looks so delicious!!! Thanks for sharing!
I can’t decide if I want a wood fired pizza oven or your friends Chip and Pat!! lol. can I have both? Seriously though, these are just the most perfect pizzas … I actually had pizza for dinner last night but these photos make me want it all over again.
You are too funny Tracey. We can share Chip & Pat with you 🙂
Wow! Great variety of flavors, and your buzz is climbing!
Rosé, pizza from a wood-fire oven in a gorgeous setting, family + friends…what more can anyone ask for?
I don’t know where to start.. except… I so want a pizza oven!!! ALmond wood must make for a beautiful fragrance. The crust looks perfect and the selections of pizzas over the top good… it was like visiting a pizza parlor. Smashing post… great party.
Pizza and Pink Wine Party sounds awesome! All the pizzas look wonderful, definitely loving the half & half pizza.
This looks like an absolutely blast! And the pizzas – they all look awesome! I’m so envious of the brick oven.
wow, Lori! You outdid yourself! What a stunning post. What wonderful variety! Your friends sound divine; the home, the pool, the wood oven, the kids– everything is fabulous! My kinda of party!
scratch that “of” in my last comment! 🙂 i’m so overwhelmed by all the yumminess!
Rosé is definitely the perfect summer pool party wine! We’re all in awe of Chip & Pat’s amazing pizza oven and the perfect, crispy crust pizzas you created – especially love the half & half!
It was such a blast to host this event. the wines with the pizzas were gastronomic.
and yes the pizza oven is well worth the investment. our’s is an earthstone oven which
i highly recommend. Maurice the owner is there to answer any questions and with recipe
suggestions. We also enjoy steaks fish and vegetables when the oven is slightly cooler.
Thank you Lori, the post is beautiful.
Pat – we cherish your friendship. Thanks again.
Looks like a fun day! Making all different kinds of pizzas and wine tasting is such a great idea for company. I’m dreaming of the caramelized onion and feta! That backyard pizza oven is awesome.
Oh my – those pizzas look delicious! I just went out for thin crust pizza and was thinking how much better it would have been in a wood oven. My friend wanted to put a wood oven in his backyard and then I reminded him that we live in Canada (not really worth the cost).
Marvelous post. As per usual. Agreed about the oven, there is no comparison to the high heat generated by an oven like that.
The pizzas look fantastic. Love the BLT concept.
Thank you for continuing to grace our cooking group with your immense talent. we are much better for it.
Hi Laz – you are too kind. It is my absolute pleasure to be a part of the Cooking Club, thank you for inviting me to join in. Your comment made my day 🙂
Anxiously waiting to hear what September’s challenge will be…
Everything about post is awesome. Your friends have my husband’s dream outdoors. He is a pizza fanatic and wants an outdoor oven he can get that hot. All the pizza combinations look great, but the crust looks the most incredible.
Hi Angela – he should get one then! It cooks a lot more than pizza. Chip cooked us a steak after the pizzas, it was phenomenal.
Wow… BLT pizza.. great minds. : ) I love all the pizzas you have done. I wish I had a beautiful brick oven like that…amazing. You must enjoy pizza all the time. Very nice.
I love your wood-fired pizza concept for the challenge! Nothing can quite beat the charred and crusty taste of these pizzas I’m sure. I am especially loving that feta and onion pizza! Look at all their expressions eating the heavenly pizza. Beautiful job!!!
I love how you emphasize the versatility of pizza with this post. Taking it away from the terrible misconcepted fast food image it has today back to the rustic Italian dish it is.
My goodnesss!!! I’m so jealous of you about this post. First, an outdoor fired-wood oven pizza – man, this is a one man dream. Second, variety of pizza toppings – I know I can’t get enough of it. Third, hanging out by the pool with pink wine – I can do this all day!
Oh là là…What am I doing HERE??? I need to be THERE !!! Yes, it is a biological & psychological need…Pleeeease!!