My Pizza Oven: Dave Konstantin
Dave Konstantin is the rep for Forno Bravo in the DC area. As you can imagine, he's also a huge pizza obsessive. As the ringleader of DC Elite Pizza, a club for wood-fired pizza enthusiasts in the Capital region. We put him in the hot seat here. —The Mgmt.
When did you put it in? Did you build it yourself or have someone build it?
I've had my Forno Bravo Casa 110 oven for about three years. It was expertly built by Bright Masonry of Falls Church, Virginia.
How often do you use it?
About twice a month spring through fall, and once a month during the winter if weather permits.
Do you cook anything besides pizza in it?
I roast chicken, meat, and vegetables, and also bake Italian bread.
What style of pizza do you normally do?
What's your favorite topping or topping combination to make?
I have a huge fig tree right next to my oven, so in season I make a nice pie with fresh figs, mozzarella, mascarpone, prosciutto di Parma, and mint.
Do you cook for friends/neighbors?
Absolutely. When you build a pizza oven, suddenly everyone is your friend—even people you were sure hated you!
Our neighbor's kids come to the fence with hungry looks and usually go back in with a couple of pizzas.
What does your family think of your pizza madness?
No complaints as long as the pies keep coming.
The Pizza Cognition Theory states that "the first slice of pizza a child sees and tastes ... becomes, for him, pizza." Do you remember your first slice? Where was it from, is the place still around, and if so, does it hold up? On that note, has your taste in pizza evolved over time?
I don't remember my very first slice, but I had many great New York–style pies at Venezia Pizzeria in East Norwalk, Connecticut (now long gone) while growing up. I compare every NY pizza I've eaten since to their sausage-and-mushroom. (No Coke, only "Pep-a-si" available.)
Where do you go for pizza in your area (when you're not making your own)?
What one thing should NEVER go on a pizza?
Who would you like to see interviewed next?
Paul "Fio" Fiorino.
Awesome! Thanks for playing along, Dave.