I met Sandi Stoyan at a networking event last June with the Women’s Culinary Network. Deep in conversation with two other members, I see the passion and animation of how she expressed her love for food. It was like a magnet that drew me into the circle of banter. I later learned that this kindred spirit owns a pizza place, Mickey’s Pizza at Oakville. We traded insights on how we love our pizza and even if we just met, the conversation just spilled naturally. That night I left with a smile on face, in awe about being around people who loves food as much or even more than I do.
Fast-forward to winter, I received a very welcome surprise in the form of an invitation. Sandi has asked me to join her in her pizza kitchen for a night with hardcore foodies just like her and me. I had to read the email twice as I was in a disbelief how her memory of our conversation was so vivid as if it were yesterday. I felt giddy at the thought of being set loose in a pizza kitchen. My mind just went on a monotonic nom nom nom chant.
That night was yesterday. When I arrived Mickey’s Pizza, the party has already started. I walked into a brightly painted space whose walls were amassed with testimonials of how customers love feeding their dragons. Designed to have pizza for take-out, most of the space dedicated to the massive slow turntable of a pizza oven. The oven, encased in a protective see-through glass, allowed everyone to gawk and see how the cheeses bubble and melt as it goes round and round. Right beside the turntable was another tower of ridiculously high temp ovens to bake their deep dish pizzas. I sought out Sandi first and saw that she was in the midst of all the foodies she invited for the night. They already have a head start prepping pizza’s in the kitchen.
We were invited to create a pizza of our dreams, letting us take command of the assembly station. From the counter, I see the freshest of ingredients and an array of meats and cheeses. I oohed and ahhed at the pizzas I see take form. I have lost count how many combinations I tried and I really felt full to the brim. From deep dish style pizzas to thin gourmet ones, both with meat and vegetarian, were a joy to bite into. There is nothing like fresh, steaming pizza with such a satisfying crunch from the crust and a long stringy cheese as you pull the piece that you bite. After an hour of taking pictures and trying different pizzas, I was still lusting to try another one but knew I cannot consume anymore. There is that point all you can do is look longingly and sigh.
Thank you for the hospitality, Mick and Sandi. It’s a food event that I would be raving about for a long, long time.