Welcome!

If you’re visiting for the first time, Welcome!

Want to know where the critics eat? [Click Here!]

Check out a list of posts on the lefthand side or [HERE]

Follow me on Instagram at @SLICEofFELICIA
and Facebook at Pizza Lover Chicago

Pizza Expo 2017

My <3 For Pizza Expo in this Acrostic Poem

IMG_8507

Chef Tony Gemignani showing off his grandma pie. #drool

Party with 6400 Friends
Informative seminars
Zero unhappy attendees
Za for days… every style, every way
Acrobatic competitions @World Pizza Games
Exchanging ideas with fellow pizzeria owners
eXcellent pizzas sampled @ Intl. Pizza Challenge
Products galore for all pizzeria needs!!
Only place to learn more and get better

Pizza Expo 2017 was a blast…

I recently returned from my sixth #pizzaexpo in Las Vegas. This expo is a consortium for all independent pizzeria owners to do one or more of the following:
A. Refine their craft to make better pizzas
B. Attend seminars to improve operations and increase bottom line
C. Join competitions to earn #pizza fame and good PR
D. Meet exhibitors to learn about new products, ingredients, & equipment
E. Network with fellow pizzeria owners and exchange ideas

Here are some of my key takeaways!

Charity: I was honored to support a pizza-focused charity called Slice Out Hunger. I worked the booth, answered questions about the charity, and got pizzerias to support the “SLICE OUT SPECIAL” campaign which goes through the month of MAY! FYI: $1 from each pie sold goes to No Kid Hungry.IMG_8461

Gluten-Free: “Gluten free” is bigger and better. With the amount of consumers having gluten-intolerance across the world, it’s a no-brainer to add some gluten-free/gluten-free friendly items to your menu. (If you don’t cook these items in a separate oven/area, it’s important to include a disclaimer). The pizza expo has had a gluten free division of their International Pizza Challenge to highlight the fact that gluten-free can be done quite well… Trust me it’s good. Also loved newcomer Caulipower, which sells shells & dough to pizzerias but has retail frozen pies in grocers and on amazon.com. Quite yum! Returning favorite is always Kiki’s Gluten Free, who improve every year by expanding their product line!

IMG_8743

Online Ordering: This has been around for a while now, but I was intrigued by the pizza-specific ordering site SLICE, and they had some awesome swag… There are so many online ordering options for pizzeria customers but the ideal wishlist feature is to have the site integrate with the pizzeria point-of-sale system, which is the hardest!

Sporting Slice Online ordering gear!

Sporting Slice Online ordering company’s gear!

Press: There were cameras flying around, and it wasn’t just the Pizza Today people. The food network was filming a lot of the compeititive events! Hope that some of our friends get famous! :)

FullSizeRender (1)

Big Names:Pizza celebs were all over the expo show floor… working exhibitor booths, giving demos, judging competitions. And they’re typically open and friendly to new pizzeria business owners and happy to share tips and tricks. #pizza stardom is real, but the #pizza stars are real people, and they’re supportive of newbies.

IMG_8784 IMG_8592

Community: The #pizza community gets stronger every year. Coming to the #pizza expo is a good reminder that although you may be competing with a pizzeria on the same block (or around the corner), there is a whole world of pizzeria owners who want to learn from each other. If those within the community support each other more, we can do a lot more as a community and bring in higher sales across the board!

IMG_8563

Fine Folk Pizza/DeNunzios

IMG_8448

Chef Leo Spirizzi!

IMG_8606 IMG_8719

Looking forward to Pizza Expo March 2018! #COUNTDOWNNOW

Le Sorelle- Boca Raton, FL

The first time Jon and I had seen my parents and his dad was four months after our wedding! Although facetime and phone calls work, it was great to reconnect in person in Florida :). We tried Le Sorelle, a new Italian restaurant that opened just down the street from their house and already had positive pizza reviews. We shared a plethora of dishes, from pizza to pasta to yummy desserts! Greatly enjoyed this spot and my mom loves it so much she plans to make it their new local restaurant! Great work! We appreciated the family-run business and were pleased with the pies.

Top that pie!!

Top that pie!!

IMG_2275 IMG_2268

Be still, my heart

Be still, my heart

 

Ray’s- Times Square, NY

Grabbed a post-theatre slice on my visit to NYC! Not my favorite slice, but had to visit! The crust left much to desire but otherwise was sufficient to satisfy my hunger :)

Photo May 15, 7 25 55 PM Photo May 15, 7 19 59 PM Photo May 15, 7 23 25 PM

 

Ribalta- NYC, New York

Loved walking into this high-ceiling sports-viewing family-feeling restaurant! I visited Ribalta at 12th and 48th in NYC and had a lovely meal at the bar. The restaurant was packed on a Saturday afternoon in advance of a big Italy soccer game. I enjoyed my glass of bubbly and perfectly executed neapolitan pie. Really enjoyed the layout of this place! Would love to go back and seems like a great place to visit and relax with a group!

Cool oven straight back

Cool oven straight back

Big-screen for watching sporting events

Big-screen for watching sporting events

Photo May 14, 3 48 05 PM

Just loving the edges of the pie... oh and the cheesey bits!

Just loving the edges of the pie… oh and the cheesey bits!

Hello beautiful

Hello beautiful

Entrance- Notice Vera Pizza Napoletana Sign. Very important!

Entrance- Notice Vera Pizza Napoletana Sign. Very important!

Prince Street Pizza- SOHO, New York

One of my FAVORITE slices ever was experienced in NY at Prince Street pizza. If I wasn’t trying to have a well-rounded pizza experience, I would have been back for seconds & thirds. The walk-up shop at Prince Street pizza puts out some amazing square slices. The mini cup pepperonis were glorious and it was the best combination of crunchy edges with magical doughy innards :). I cannot recommend this place highly enough. And it’s perfectly located in a trendy area. Walk, don’t run, to this joint.

Pizza prep and a growing line

Pizza prep and a growing line

I'm telling you, this is a piece of art

I’m telling you, this is a piece of art

Me and the godfather

Me and the godfather

Bumped into a scott's pizza tour group !

Bumped into a scott’s pizza tour group !