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Monday, October 28, 2013

Good Fellow's, Culver Rd.

A helpful reader recently alerted me to new place, Good Fellow's on Culver Road, near Parsells. I stopped in for a couple of cheese slices last month.
They looked pretty good, with a thin crust, narrow lip and a thin but proportional layer of sauce and cheese.
From their outward appearance, I would've thought that these were New York style slices. A peek underneath, though, showed otherwise. The underside was docked, i.e., pockmarked with holes (not a problem in itself), and ranged from deep to very dark brown. It was soft, and smelled of cooking oil.
Nor did things get much better when I took a bite. The crust was lifeless, with little evidence of rising, and chewy but uninteresting. The sauce was OK but basic, like an average canned sauce. The cheese was likewise serviceable, but covered in spots with a thin layer of orange-colored oil that had exuded during the baking process. Like the sauce, it wasn't bad, but it didn't do anything to elevate this slice or compensate for the poor crust.
This is a short review, but that's about all there is to say about this pizza. It wasn't that good, and it wasn't as good as it looked. I had the feeling that there was a good pizza lurking in there somewhere, if it had been prepared a little differently, but as it was, this was just a thinner version of the pizza that you tend to find at a lot of quick, inexpensive places. The crust needs work.
I'll refrain from grading this one, since this is a pretty new place. Maybe things will get better. But this was a below-average slice of pizza.
Good Fellows Pizza & Deli, Culver Road, Rochester
1157 Culver Road
Rochester, New York 14609
(585) 482-1977
Hours unknown at this time

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Amore (Wegmans East Avenue)

When I first read about Wegmans opening an Italian restaurant, offering pizza, adjoining their revamped East Avenue store, I was both intrigued and skeptical. Wegmans gets a lot of things right, but I'm not sold on them where full-fledged restaurants - or pizza - are concerned.
But I did want to check out Amore, the Italian restaurant attached to the remodeled East Avenue store. You can read about the details of the pizza, and the oven it's baked in, here. As I said, I took a wait-and-see attitude.
I went for lunch with two friends, which gave me the opportunity to try three pizzas. I went with my usual Margherita. One of my companions got a diavolo, and the other ordered a butternut squash pizza topped with shaved Brussels sprouts and roasted leeks.
Each pizza measures eleven inches across, making it about right for one hungry person, or just enough to take a slice or two home with you. The crust on all three was quite thin; not paper-thin, but thin. Think of several sheets of paper.
My Margherita was generally good The underside of the crust had a few char spots, and was reasonably crisp. I'll get to the toppings in a moment.
My friend with the butternut squash pie complained that her crust was not good, and at first I assumed it was just a matter of personal taste. Then I tried a slice. It was heavily coated underneath with flour, giving the underside a pasty texture and a flavor of raw flour. It's common to find some flour on the underside of a pizza, as it helps keep the raw dough from sticking to the pizza peel. But this was too much.The crust was also very blackened - burnt, in fact - along part of the edge.
The diavolo, topped with sopressata and roasted peppers, had a decent crust, similar to the Margherita's, and we all agreed that it was the best pie overall of the bunch. The combination of peppery sopressata, sweet roasted peppers and melted mozzarella made a very nice combination. Despite the name, it wasn't especially spicy, but it did have a little bit of kick. It also came with a small cup of hot oil for dipping, something I hadn't seen before. I tried it, but it didn't seem to me to add a whole lot to the experience.
As for the other pies' toppings, the Margherita wasn't bad. It was topped with a basic tomato sauce, scattered dollops of melted, fresh mozzarella, and torn basil, which were added after cooking. It was rather salty but tasty, and I liked it, even if the components didn't quite come together like the best Margheritas I've had.
The butternut squash pie was likewise not bad, but not quite as good as I'd hoped. It's usually unwise to have preconceptions, but I was expecting something along the lines of the butternut squash pizza that I had at Fiamma. That pie was topped with a squash puree, which made for a nice sauce.
This pie, on the other hand, was topped which chunks and bits of roasted vegetables, including diced butternut squash. They tasted good enough, but overall I found the pie rather dry.
The opinions expressed here are mine alone, of course, but one nice thing about sharing pizza with people is getting their input. And on this occasion all three of us agreed that if we were to rank these pies from best to worst, it would be:  (1) diavolo; (2) Margherita; and (3) butternut squash. I'm not going to grade them individually, because part of the issue with these pies was the crust, which can vary from one pizza to another. In other words, just because the crust on the butternut squash pizza wasn't so good doesn't mean that Amore's butternut squash pizza has a particular problem with the crust; the problem is not with that variety, it's a problem with consistency.
I'm giving these a C. There were some issues, as I've described. Overall this was pizza worth trying, and there were things I liked about it, but it wasn't great, and at $12 for an 11-inch pie, I expect a little better. A C just seems right to me.
Amore, 1750 East Ave., 14610
(585) 452-8780
11:30AM - 2:30PM, Sunday - Saturday
5:30PM - 9PM, Sunday - Thursday
5:30PM - 10PM, Friday & Saturday

Friday, October 18, 2013

Papa Roni's, Pavilion

PapaRoni's on Urbanspoon
During the course of my travels, I recently ran across a pizzeria in Pavilion, which is on Rt. 19 a few miles south of Le Roy.
Papa Roni's is at the corner of Routes 19 and 63.
I'd link to the website, but my computer is warning me that it "may harm [my] computer," so if you want to risk it, just do a web search. Here's a link to their Facebook page.
From the looks of it, I thought it might be one of these convenience-store operations, with just some prefab pizza sitting on a warming tray, but no, it is a "real" pizzeria, with hand-stretched dough and handmade pies.
Alas, my pepperoni slice wasn't so great. The crust was thin, with a medium-brown underside that was crisscrossed by screen marks. It had a rather soft surface and a chewy, uninteresting texture.
The pie from which it came seemed reasonably fresh, but a tad overdone on top. The cheese was rather browned, and not very smooth; a bit too chewy for my taste. Underneath it lay a moderate layer of basic tomatoey sauce, and up top, the thin-sliced pepperoni was nicely distributed and a little crisp. The toppings weren't bad, then, but didn't really do much to improve on the crust.
On the plus side, the pie was well made, in the sense that it was evenly thin, with a thin lip and, as mentioned, evenly distributed toppings. It just didn't add up to a particularly good slice of pizza.
Papa Roni's also does wings, subs, and ice cream.  There are a few specialty pizzas as well.
I like independent pizzerias, and every small town should have one. But I have to be honest. This pizza was OK, but below average, and so it gets a D from me.

Papa Roni's, 11090 Lake St., Pavilion, NY 14525
Phone:(585) 584-3170
10 a.m. - 10 p.m. daily, till 11 p.m. on Fri. and Sat.

Book Review: The 250 Best Cookie Recipes and The 250 Best Brownies Bars & Squares

I have been consistently impressed with the cookbooks I've gotten from Robert Rose, and here are two more winners:  the 250 best cookie recipes, and the 250 best brownie bars & squares.
Sure, you can go online and find recipes; I do it all the time. But it can be time-consuming to sift through them, and often the comments and reviews aren't very useful--somebody is sure to say that they substituted one ingredient for another and changed the oven temperature and cooking time, and then they base their review on that. And for me, if you do a lot of a certain type of cooking, it's nice to have a book handy in your kitchen.
What I like about these books is that they're well-organized, concise, easy to follow, and well illustrated. One trend these days is cookbooks that are dominated by the chef/author's personality, like a cross between a recipe collection and a group of essays. That's fine, but sometimes I just want good recipes. And that's what these books deliver.
The cookie book includes an introductory section on making cookies, with tips on ingredients, mixing, baking and storing. The bulk of the book is taken up by recipes, organized according to cookie type:  drop cookies, sliced, sandwich, and more. The recipes are concise and easy to follow, and though not every recipe is illustrated, there are two sections of excellent color photographs. In addition to the introduction, baking tips are interspersed throughout.
The same format is found in the 250 best brownie bars & squares. The introduction covers how to melt and store chocolate, troubleshooting baking problems, and other basics. The book goes on to cover bars and squares based on chocolate, coconut, fruit, and nuts, plus frostings and glazes and no-bake varieties. You want a basic brownie? It's here in four steps. Want something a little more impressive, if just as easy? How about spicy oatmeal bars with citrus glaze? You'll find them here. And again, the book is well-organized and helpfully laid out with easy-to-follow recipes.
Most of my baking is centered on bread and pizza, but I do like to bake the occasional dessert for family or guests, or a batch of cookies or brownies to share with coworkers. I am pleased to add these volumes to my bookshelf, to give me ideas and simple instructions next time I'm feeling like baking some sweet treats.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Faro's, Canandaigua

I stopped not long ago at Faro's in Canandaigua.  I posted about Faro's before, in 2012, but they've moved since then, from East Lake Road to Main Street. So I wanted to see if the move had made any difference in the pizza, which was good enough before to earn a B+.
I got a cheese slice and a pepperoni slice. They could be described as NY style slices, with a thin crust and narrow lip. The undersides were dry to the touch, and reasonably crisp, though somewhat weirdly cracked horizontally, i.e. perpendicularly to the pie's radius (I knew geometry would come in handy someday).
The crust was good, but not exceptionally good. It didn't have quite the outer crisp, crackly, slightly charred surface that I look for in NY style pizza. But it had a nice chew, a medium-dense crumb, and some breadlike flavor.
The components of these slices worked well together, and the toppings were added in good proportion to each other and to the crust. The cheese was slightly browned, not as smooth or creamy as last time, but not dried out either. The thin slices of pepperoni were pretty basic, but OK. Below the cheese, the sauce added just enough tomatoey sweetness, and was well bonded with the top surface of the crust.
These slices were a little different from what I got from Faro's last time, not radically, but a little. On the plus side, the cheese more evenly covered the slices, and had not migrated toward the center of the pie. But the cheese was a tad more brown, without the semi-liquid texture that it had before. The crust was decent, and the sauce was pretty good.
So some things were a little better this time around, some things a little worse. All in all, I liked this a little less than before, but not enough to bump them Faro's down a full grade. This was reasonably good pizza, and since I've mostly stayed away lately from pluses and minuses, I think it deserves a B.
Faro's Pizzeria, 395 S. Main St., Canandaigua, NY 14424
(585) 396-2840
Mon. 11 am - 9 pm, Tue. - Thu. 11 am - 10 pm, Fri. & Sat. 11 am - 11 pm, Sun. noon - 9 pm

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

We Have a Winner

Of the $50 gift card from Salvatore's. Our winner is Adrian. Adrian, you said you were due, and I guess you were right! Please email your postal address to me at, and I will pass it on to Salvatore's. They will mail the card to you. Thanks to everybody for participating, and look for more giveaways to come!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Cafe Sorelle at Nazareth College

Not long ago, I published a post about the pizza at the University of Rochester's "Pizza Pi" operation. I wasn't too impressed, and gave it a D.
But I figured that the U of R couldn't be the only local college trying to boost its pizza offerings (I did review RIT back in 2010, but I haven't been back since), so I started looking around local college websites. And I discovered that Nazareth College's Cafe Sorelle features Portabella's, which offers "handmade wood-fired pizza and panini."
Hmm. Wood-fired pizza? At Nazareth? Really? I was a little skeptical, but this was obviously worth investigating.
I hate to say it, but my skepticism was justified. First off, take a look at that oven. Do you see any wood in there? Neither did I. Maybe the oven is capable of handling wood, and maybe, at times, it does house a wood fire, but on this visit, it was nothing but a gas fire.
OK, well, I'm willing to overlook that if the pizza's good. False advertising issues aside, a gas oven is certainly capable of turning out excellent pizza.
But this pizza was far from excellent. There were three slice pies available. One of them was a pepperoni pie (pictured), but although I often go for a pepperoni slice, this one didn't look so good. It resembled a typical convenience-store pizza, kind of thick, with dried-out cheese along the edge, and, well, just not very appealing.
So I got a plain cheese slice and a "Greek" slice, both of which seemed fresher, as well as thinner. The "thinner" part wasn't decisive for me, but they did look thinner than the rather stale-looking pepperoni pie.
The top side of these slices didn't look half bad, but the bottom was a different story. They had that oily look and medium-brown color that signals to me that this is not going to be a great slice of pizza. It's the difference between dough that has baked on a hot surface, and dough that has almost fried in the presence of oil. Maybe some people like it the latter way. I don't. Especially with a thin-crust pie.
The underside showed that the crust had been docked, i.e., punctured with small holes to prevent big bubbles from forming. The crust varied in thickness, from very thin near the tip to medium-to-thick closer to the edge.
Things didn't get better on top, I'm afraid. The cheese was leathery. It had melted and congealed, and lost whatever melty smoothness it previously had. The cheese slice had a thin layer of tomato sauce underneath the cheese, but it added little other than some red color.
On the positive side, the toppings on the Greek slice were quite good, with tangy feta cheese and salty kalamata olives. But this was a case of good toppings on a bad crust. And good toppings can never save a bad crust. Contrary to what you would expect from so-called wood-fired pizza, even the edge on this slice was underdone; no charring, crackling or crispness whatsoever.
One of the sad aspects of this pie is that even without a true wood-fired oven, they should be able to turn out a better pizza than this. I've had better slices from convenience stores. I give this a D.
Oh, and while I was there, I stopped by another food location at Nazareth, The Roost, which advertises "focaccia pizza." Their website states that the Roost is "most renowned for their pizza."
On walking in, I didn't see any pizza available, until I noticed  a few cold squares sitting on a counter off to one side. They looked even less appetizing than what I'd just had, so I passed. Maybe they were left over from the day before, although it's hard to believe that they wouldn't toss them at the end of the day. The Nazareth website does state that the Roost is "a great place to stop by in the evening," but it opens at 11:30 a.m.; if pizza isn't made until later in the day, they should say so.
For students, Lourdes Dining Hall also has the Hearth Stone Oven, offering "homemade pizza," but obviously I couldn't try that. I wouldn't expect much, though.
Understandably, colleges are trying to boost their food offerings. I suspect that students today are more likely to have transportation and to live off-campus, and that there are more and better eateries around college campuses these days. And pizza is a must. So I get that colleges want to offer better pizza.
The problem is, it seems like some colleges are just offering better-sounding pizza. "Wood fired," "artisanal," "gourmet," "handmade," "homemade," and so on ... how about just good, basic pizza?
If you're in between classes, and you've only got a half hour to grab something to eat, you're pretty much stuck with what's available on campus. That's probably enough to keep these kinds of operations in business. But if you've got the time and the transportation, there's better pizza to be had, not far away.
Cafe Sorelle, Golisano Academic Center, Nazareth College
Mon. - Thu. 7:30 a.m. - 8:30 p.m., Fri. 7:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Closed weekends.

Monday, October 7, 2013

$50 Salvatore's Giveaway - Enter Here

Just to avoid confusion, if you'd like to enter the giveaway for a $50 Salvatore's gift card, please leave a comment after this post. Any comment will do.

Interview with Sam Fantauzzo, and a $50 Giveaway

Let me start this post by being up-front about one thing:  I haven't always had good things to say about Salvatore's. Some pizza I've gotten there in the past, I wasn't too impressed with. And I'm frankly not a big fan of chain pizzerias generally, although I do try to judge each pizza on its own merits.
But if I am going to try to cover the Rochester pizza scene, I have to recognize that Salvatore's is a major player. Regardless of what I've thought of their pizza over the years, they have been very successful. And they wouldn't be that successful unless a lot of people liked their pizza. So I thought it might be interesting to sit down and talk some time with Sam Fantauzzo, the owner of the Salvatore's chain.
A couple of email messages later, I was able to set up an interview with "Soccer Sam," so named for his love of, and involvement with, local soccer. He proved a gracious and engaging host at his Culver Road "Donuts Delite" location. Sam and I were joined by Nick, who manages that location, Chuck, a "quality control guy" who oversees the entire chain, and Ashley, who's in media relations and who seemed to be Sam's all-around assistant, or what used to be called a girl Friday (which I assume is now a politically incorrect term).
Sam had previously been unaware of The Rochester NY Pizza Blog (what!?!), but after I contacted him, he took a look at it. Not surprisingly, he wasn't entirely pleased with my reviews of Salvatore's pizza. So he clearly wanted to set the record straight about some facts concerning Salvatore's.
And he did. I'm not going to transcribe, verbatim, all of Sam's talking points. Nor am I going to recite the full history of Salvatore's, which is well documented on their website. But I did come away impressed by Sam's dedication to his business and to his pizza.
Like a lot of other local pizzerias, Salvatore's has its roots in Sicily. Sam got headed down the pizza path in high school, when he chose pizza as a home economics project (he got to take home ec? I was forced to take wood and metal shop, where I had to struggle through making stuff for my mom that she would never use). From there, he found a place on East Main Street that he chose for his first store, and developed a pizza recipe based on his grandmother's homemade pizza.
Sam also learned the ropes of the pizza business from his brother-in-law, who ran Celino's, which at the time was apparently a big player in the Rochester pizza market. (Celino's eventually folded, but I'd like to find out more about them, so if you have any memories of Celino's, please share them in the Comments section.)
That first location was a hit, and as individual employees gained skill and confidence, Salvatore's began to expand.  In terms of the pizza, there have been some changes over the years, but they've been relatively minor and incremental. The crust is a bit thinner than it used to be, in line with current customer tastes, but not by much. Salvatore's also now offers a ultra thin crust, but their regular pizza remains medium thick, as that's what the local market wants. Sam considers his pizza to be within the parameters of "Rochester style," which means a relatively thick, airy crust, topped with a generous helping of thick-bodied tomato sauce and mozzarella.
More than once, Sam emphasized that when he started Salvatore's, he wanted to get away from the stereotype of the "sweaty guy in a T-shirt" making your pizza. Sam envisioned a "classier pizzeria":  stores would be clean, customers would feel comfortable going there, and they'd know that they could rely on Salvatore's for a consistent, well-made product at a reasonable price. He described Salvatore's at one point as the "Wegmans of pizza," which seems like a reasonably apt analogy.
Consistency is important to Sam, as it is to most chain operations, and to that end, all Salvatore's pizza dough is produced at Palmer's, by Salvatore's employees. From that central location, thousands of pounds a day are sent out to Salvatore's various locations. The recipe is essentially the same as the original, in line with Sam's if-it-ain't-broke-don't-fix-it philosophy; he made a point of telling me, for example, that Salvatore's uses the same brand of whole-milk mozzarella today that they've used from the beginning.
But though the recipe may not have changed much since the 1970s, that doesn't mean that Sam is sitting idle. He's a regular at trade shows ("I love that stuff," he said) and keeps up with industry trends. Under his direction, Salvatore's has been in the forefront locally of offering delivery (for which he came up with the slogan, "We deliver everything but babies!"), online ordering, and a mobile web site. The "Super Slice," a Salvatore's trademark item, started as an easier alternative to individual small pizzas. And that "Salvatore's! .. dot com" radio ad? Sam's idea, and his voice.
Sam has also expanded Salvatore's offerings, which now extend well beyond pizza, to ribs, chicken, burgers, and plenty more. As he put it, "We're not just in the pizza business, we're in the burger business, chicken wings, ribs," etc. He added that he doesn't consider his competition to come so much from other pizzerias as from other restaurants generally, like McDonalds, Friendlys, and so on. Ultimately, Sam explained, the competition is for the consumer's food dollar. To that end, Salvatore's has added beer and wine to several locations, in an effort to transform it into more of a restaurant as opposed to simply a pizzeria.
A good 80% of Salvatore's business, though, remains "pizza related," and pizza remains Salvatore's core business. While I'm on that subject, I have to say that the pizza we shared was pretty enjoyable. I'm not going to give it a letter grade, under the circumstances, but its medium-thick crust had just a hint of oil underneath - no more than I would expect with a pan-risen and -baked pizza, the crust had a nice "chew," and the toppings were quite good, particularly the huge, meaty chunks of sausage. I had no problem eating my share of the pie.
Since we were at the Donuts Delite location, we also talked a bit about doughnuts (somebody, I can't remember who, once wrote that they loved Donuts Delite for misspelling both words in its name, and for whatever reason, that's always stuck with me). In some ways, doughnuts are more of a challenge than pizza, because of the number of steps involved:  making the dough, the rise, cutting, frying, and filling, all to turn out a product that sells for about a dollar each. Salvatore's doughnuts are big, visually appealing, and fresh. Sam noted a competing chain's reference to their "baked" doughnuts, which I had wondered about when I saw their ads; in fact, those doughnuts (like nearly all doughnuts that you will find at a retailer) are fried, and only "baked" to reheat them.
In line with Sam's bent for innovation, Salvatore's also offers cannoli doughnuts, which, as the name implies, are doughnuts stuffed with cannoli filling. They also do "cronuts," a croissant-doughnut hybrid that's one of the latest food trends.
Toward the end of my visit, I got a behind-the-scenes tour of Salvatore's kitchen area, which was spotless and well-organized. I also got an up-close look at Salvatore's air-deck ovens, which Sam mentioned more than once. (He also expressed some disdain for conveyor ovens, saying that they produce "microwave pizza.") The kitchen area was remarkably cool, so the heat from those ovens must be very efficiently dispersed; I guess that goes along with Sam's intent to get away from the "sweaty pizza guy" image.
One technical note:  Salvatore's pizzas are baked on trays, which is not uncommon for a pizzeria with heavy volume, like Salvatore's. On a customer's request, they will remove a pizza from the tray and finish baking it directly on the oven deck, once the crust firms up. I'd like to try that sometime, to see what difference it makes in the final product.
As we toured the premises, it was clear to me that Sam is no "undercover boss." Employees recognized him and greeted him. He's clearly a hands-on guy, and among Salvatore's employees, stories circulate about his attention to detail, like the time he tasted the glass cleaner that somebody was using to see if it was the good stuff (it wasn't).
At the same time, I didn't get the sense that Sam is a tyrant, or a control freak in the sense of trying to micromanage each location's operations. He does delegate, and he depends on a reliable team of employees to keep things running smoothly.
But the key word there is "reliable." Sam is quick to admit that he counts on his employees, but they'd better be good, and know what they're doing. Employees who "don't get it" are swiftly shown the door.
After a good hour and half of conversation, I took my leave of Sam, Nick, Chuck and Ashley. I came away with a few impressions. First, Sam is a pretty personable guy. Of course, I don't have to work for him, but I enjoyed talking with him.
He also seems like somebody who's carried on his business the right way. What I mean by that is, he's got some integrity. Early on, Sam developed personal relationships in the pizza business, and he's maintained some loyalty and trust with suppliers and other people he's worked with.
I also got the sense that he's not out to screw anybody, competitors or otherwise. I don't know what his competitors think of Sam, but he expressed admiration for several other pizzeria owners, and he told me that he's refrained from opening up new stores next door to existing pizzerias owned by individuals he considers friends.
Sam is also proud of his accomplishments, and justifiably so, but he is not shy about giving credit to others, especially his employees. More than once Sam expressed his belief that he sees himself and his staff as part of a team. When I asked Sam to name the biggest reason for success, he quickly responded that he's been able to surround himself with "great people who are dedicated and committed."
What also struck me is that, as I mentioned earlier, Sam is not one to rest on his laurels. In response to a question about whether national chains had made things harder for him, he said that in some ways, his business has gotten easier, because it's much easier for him to follow industry trends today. Just look at what the big guys are doing.
And Sam does keep up with trends, avidly. Sam is a sponge for ideas, who's always looking for ways to stay ahead of the game. He didn't use the term "fast casual," but that's one of the hotter trends in the restaurant business these days, and in line with that, several Salvatore's now offer beer and wine, and are transforming into casual restaurants rather than simply fast-food slice joints.
I also think Sam is a dedicated, hard-working owner. He's not just sitting back collecting a paycheck while his underlings do the work. I don't know if I'd call him a workaholic, but this is a guy who by his account starts his day around 3:30 every morning, on about five hours' sleep. Every morning he meets with his staff (at a more reasonable hour, I hope), and he's clearly got a passion for detail.
Although Sam's roots will always be in pizzamaking, he also struck me as, in some ways, more of a business man than a pizza guy as such. At one point, in fact, he said to me, "We're business people, we're not pizza people." I don't think he meant that he's not interested in pizza, but that he recognizes that he's in the pizza business. Sure, he wants Salvatore's pizza to be good, but not just because he loves pizza; he wants his pizza to be good because that's good for his business.
I'm not about to say that's a bad thing. The pizzeria graveyards are probably filled, metaphorically, with the remains of places started by people who were passionate about pizza, but didn't have a clue about how to run a business. That's not Sam.
Sam's vision for Salvatore's, from the start, I think, has been to produce good, reliable pizza in a welcoming environment, and to stay on top of industry trends. And judging from Salvatore's success, I'd say he's largely achieved that goal. Some 35 years after that high school home ec project, Salvatore's is closing in on its 30th location, and Sam told me that he thinks the region can support more.
I'll be out there to try them and report on them. I liked the pizza we shared during this interview, but I'll keep checking up on Salvatore's, and Sam, I have to tell you, I won't hold back if I don't like it. But I don't think you'd want me to.
Now - Salvatore's has graciously agreed to give away, to one lucky reader of this blog, a $50 gift card.  You can get a lot of food for $50, pizza or otherwise. So this is a good one. And if you live in the Rochester area, there's almost certainly a Salvatore's near you.
How to qualify? Just leave a comment here (NOT after the blog post that you're reading now.) Sorry for any confusion, but I should have separated the giveaway from the interview from the beginning.
I'll pick a winner at random eight days from today, Tuesday, October 15, around noon. If you win, I'll need your postal mailing address, and Salvatore's will mail the gift card to you. So I will need some contact information to allow me to pass on your mailing address to them. You can do that now or wait until the contest ends.
Salvatore's (multiple locations; order online here)