I had an amazing opportunity a couple weeks ago with my fellow food friends of CLT Food Bloggers. We were given the chance to learn how to make our own pizzas! Tavolo, located in uptown Charlotte at the corner of 6th and College, is an Italian restaurant focusing on fresh, local ingredients that fit right in to our modern and traditional expectations of great Italian food.
General manager Anthony Cardone and Executive Chef Deacon Ovall and his team show us their pizza making ways at Tavolo. They were all very proud about the quality, sourcing and preparation of not only the pizzas but their entire menu.
Their menu is full of classic plates like Eggplant Parmigiano, Chicken Francese and Shrimp Fra Diavolo. There are more modern options like Charcuterie Boards as well as a Bar Bites Menu featuring items like Meatball Sliders, Fried Zucchini and Fried Dough Bites. It was clear they really enjoyed and valued their process of pizza making, so let’s get right to that.
Only the Freshest Ingredients
Their dough is a 50/50 flour and semolina and shaped into 8 ounce rolls. Once risen and pounded, they’re ready for toppings. Although the pizza dough is made in house, their table bread is baked by Libretto’s Pizzeria.
Tavolo uses a cheese mixture of mostly whole cow’s milk with a bit of buffalo milk shredded mozzarella blended in for that extra punch of flavor. If you’ve never tried buffalo mozzarella, put it on your to-do list! The have three sauces: marinara, alfredo and garlic oil, which are all made from scratch in their kitchen.
Ranging from house-made balsamic and cherry soaked figs to 4 inch diameter Board’s Head pepperoni and spicy sausage, all of their toppings are of the highest quality.
Fun Fact: Boar’s Head was the only company who could accommodate their request for such large pepperoni, high fives!
As a final touch, they dust their pizzas with a spice blend made special for them by Motown Spice Provisions in Mooresville.
Wood Fired Oven
Tavolo uses hard wood cherry and white oak for their wood-fired oven. At a temperature between 700-800 degrees, the pizzas only take about 6-8 minutes to cook. We almost burned the demo pizza, so it’s obvious their pizzas require a lot of attention to make sure they come out perfectly.
The pizzas start off in the very back of the oven where the embers are hottest. Then, they are turned slightly and moved along the sides for equal distribution of heat. Once all the turns are made and it reaches the front of the oven, voila!
My Personal Pizza
Since I couldn’t decide on just a few toppings and didn’t want my pizza to weigh 5 pounds I decided to create a half and half. One half just had to be those 4 inch pepperonis and nothing else because they are simply impressive. For the other half, I also chose spicy sausage, portabella mushrooms, fresh tomatoes and buffalo milk mozzarella. Then I doused my edges with their house-made garlic oil.
Great company, strong cocktails and amazing pizza, what a fantastic evening. See more about my friend’s Allie, Jess, Chrissie, and Tanya and their experience at Tavolo!
EatDrinkCLT | SliceofJess | OffTheEatenPath | MyForkingLife | CLTFoodBloggers