Pizza Today - July 2022 - 14

MAN ON THE STREET SCO TT WIENER
until Patsy's (now called Grimaldi's)
opened under the Brooklyn Bridge in
1990. Th at's when rumors swirled about
coal ovens being illegal, that one must
have been built before restrictive laws in
order to be " grandfathered in " for use.
While it's entirely legal to build a coalburning
oven today, most business owners
don't want to deal with the confusing
regulations of the Department of Buildings
and the fi re commissioner. Building
owners fi nd the old ovens to be more of
a liability than an asset. Th ey can make
much more money by ripping out the old
structures and enhancing their buildings'
living spaces. When a coal-fi red pizzeria
closes, the oven's fate is sealed.
Just a couple months ago, a worst
Losing NYC's Coal Burning Ovens
W
e've all had that moment when
it feels like the rug has been
pulled out from beneath our
feet. It happened to me last week in the
form of a text message: " Luzzo's has
closed. " Besides having some excellent
pizza and a staff that had been there for
decades, Luzzo's used one of the few
remaining coal-burning ovens in New
York City. Since Luzzo's didn't own the
building (it's extremely rare to fi nd pizzerias
that do), the fate of the oven remains
in the hands of an East Village landlord.
So it's essentially doomed.
New York's coal-burning ovens have
become things of legend. Th ey were
the fi rst ovens used for American pizza
making in the early 1900s because coal
was cheaper than wood. Since coal needs
a constant fl ow of oxygen to burn, the
ovens have to be built in a way that takes
up lots of space. Th e oldest ones are built
directly into the foundation of the building
or as extensions from the fi rst fl oor.
Once natural gas became available
in the 1930s, owners retrofi tted their
coal-burning ovens with fl ame throwers.
When the stainless steel pizza ovens
entered the picture in the 1940s, coalfi
red ovens became relics. After Arturo's
opened on MacDougal Street in 1957,
there were no new coal-fi red pizzerias
case scenario played out in Little Italy.
Lombardi's paid rent on two neighboring
properties, one at 32 and the other at
30 Spring Street. Th e pandemic crippled
their business, so they decided to step
away from one of the two leases and
shrink the restaurant. Th ey chose to ditch
32 Spring Street, which just so happened
to house an old coal oven built in the
1910s. Lombardi's moved to this space in
1994 specifi cally because of the old oven
and within a year of them relinquishing
the lease, the building was sold and the
new owner demolished it. It's gone. Every
last brick.
Coal-fi red ovens represent the earliest
version of pizza in the United States. On
one hand, we see chains like Grimaldi's
and Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana
spreading the gospel with new locations.
On the other, we're losing the physical
pieces of history that connect the present
with the past. Change is inevitable,
especially in the face of an industry that's
embracing the effi ciency and quality of
new technology. Still, I think it's important
to respect history and it makes me
feel helpless to witness the loss of such
beautiful pieces of our industry's past.
SCOTT WIENER is the founder of Scott's Pizza Tours in New York City and SliceOutHunger.org Instagram: @scottspizzatours
14 / PIZZATODAY.COM / JULY 2022
http://www.SliceOutHunger.org http://www.PIZZATODAY.COM

Pizza Today - July 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pizza Today - July 2022

Commentary
Digital
Conversation
Mike's Monthly Tip
Man on the Street
Building Blocks
On Deck
Knead to Know
Destination
Makeline Efficiency
Consistency Through Turnover
St. Louis Style Pizza
Summer Cocktails
Inflation Tactics
Rising Stars
Product Showcase
Pizza Today/Yellow Pages
The Marketplace
Reader's Resource
Expo Spotlight
Pizza Today - July 2022 - CT1
Pizza Today - July 2022 - CT2
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Cover1
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Cover2
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Commentary
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 4
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 5
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 6
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 7
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Digital
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 9
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Conversation
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 11
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Mike's Monthly Tip
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 13
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Man on the Street
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 15
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Building Blocks
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 17
Pizza Today - July 2022 - On Deck
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 19
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Knead to Know
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 21
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 22
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 23
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Destination
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 25
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Makeline Efficiency
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 27
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 28
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 29
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Consistency Through Turnover
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 31
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 32
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 33
Pizza Today - July 2022 - St. Louis Style Pizza
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 35
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 36
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 37
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Summer Cocktails
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 39
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Inflation Tactics
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 41
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Rising Stars
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 43
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 44
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 45
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 46
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 47
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 48
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 49
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Product Showcase
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 51
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Pizza Today/Yellow Pages
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 53
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 54
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 55
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 56
Pizza Today - July 2022 - The Marketplace
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 58
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 59
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 60
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 61
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 62
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 63
Pizza Today - July 2022 - 64
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Reader's Resource
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Expo Spotlight
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Cover3
Pizza Today - July 2022 - Cover4
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202211
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202210
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202209
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202208
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202207
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202206
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202205
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202204
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202203
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202202
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202201
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202112
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202111
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202110
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202109
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202108
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202107
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202106
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202105
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/pizzatoday/202104
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202103
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202101
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202009
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202008
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202007
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202006
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/expo_2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202005
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202004
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202003
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202002
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/202001
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201912
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201911
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201909
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201908
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201907
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201906
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201905
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201904
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201903
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201902
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201901
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201812
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201811
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201810
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201809
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201808
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201807
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201806
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201805
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201804
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201803
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201802
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201801
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201712
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201711
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201710
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201709
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201707
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201706
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201705
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201704
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201703
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201702
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201701
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201612
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201611
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201610
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201609
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201608
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201607
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201606
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201605
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201604
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201603
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201602
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201601
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201512
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201511
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201510
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201509
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201508
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pizzatoday/201507
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com