“World’s Best Calzone” Made in Upstate New York

Many love a good calzone. Those of us who enjoy pizza’s cousin have probably had some really good ones and some incredibly bad ones. Dough, sauce, toppings, and/or cheese can each make or break the crisp, half-moon-shaped crease. I must admit, when I first read that the winner of the “World Calzone Championship” was created in New York, I immediately thought “Brooklyn, maybe Manhattan”. I really should start thinking west instead of south.

A Syracuse pizzeria owner has won the award for the best “calzone in the world” in an Atlantic City, New Jersey contest sponsored by Pizza Today Magazine. According Don Cazentre from syracuse.com, the Pizza & Pasta Northeast competition featured 25 seasoned entries in the “World Calzone Championship.” Entrees were ranked by “overall suitability of the menu, use of quality ingredients, overall taste, preparation and presentation,” Cazentre reported.

Folded pizza, pepperoni, cheese, topped with a tomato base

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John “Vig” Vigliotti, owner of Peppino’s Restaurant and Catering in Syracuse, won the first place trophy last weekend at the World Calzone Championship. Vigliotti reportedly called his entry Primo Posto Calzone. Toppings were ricotta and mozzarella cheeses, Italian sausages and pistachio pesto. The filling consisted of crushed tomatoes and mozzarella cheese, along with a drizzle of pistachio pesto and crushed pistachios. OUCH! Wait, it’s better.

All contestants must make their own dough. The championship chef used a dough he developed over the years. It ferments for three days and “Vig” describes it as “much more digestible than an average dough”. Champions think of everything. A visit to Peppino’s Restaurant and Catering is now on the agenda.

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