Foodies With Benefits

Don’t Put Down That Fork, Now L.A. is Having a Pizza Festival

Pizzeria Mozza
Pizzeria Mozza Photo: Arnold/Inuyaki via Flickr

Since the start of last summer, L.A. has been stuffed with tasting and food events, practically to the point of combustion. Most people figure this procession of small plates would taper off in November after Suzanne Goin brings back her L.A. Loves Alex’s Lemonade fundraiser. But not so fast! Just when you think you may be able to drop your Knork and make a return to a normal life (you know, one that doesn’t involve gobbling down every edible animal under the sun in one three-hour period), news drops that L.A. is having its own pizza festival on November 12th.

The Los Angeles Pizza Festival kicks off on November 12th, as part of a national pizza festival hitting 15 cities in a benefit for Saint Jude’s Children’s Hospital. Organizers promise to rally “the best chefs and pizzerias in Los Angeles” to go head-to-head in a variety of categories. Might this mean our city will get the chance to redeem its long bashed pizza scene? Unfortunately, no one is telling just who these competing pizzamakers will be, but sponsors include San Gennaro Cafe, Fresh Brothers, and Maria’s Italian Kitchen, with nary a mention of Casa Bianca, Mozza, Pitfire, or Stella Rossa’s involvement. Red flag?

The event will kick off that Saturday from 1:00 to 5:00 P.M. with a $25 ticket buying guests unlimited pizza, beer, and wine, along with demos from so-called “celebrity chefs” (could they mean “artisan pizza” shill Fabio Viviani). Actress Julia Perri, an Aussie of Italian descent, will lead the proceedings for some reason, while Joe Pesci is all over the website, but probably won’t make this one.

So far, it sounds like the festival still has a lot of organizing to do and names to put in place, though we’ll reserve serious judgement until we see the list of pizzerias who are duking it out. Hopefully, organizers (Pizza Magazine, L’Italo-Americano, and CBS Outdoor) highlight L.A.’s strongest selection of pizza makers and don’t just throw a bunch of chains at us and hope our stereotypically pizza-impaired town doesn’t notice.

VIP and general tickets for the L.A. Pizza Festival are available online.

L.A. Pizza Festival
Saturday, November 12, 2011 1:00 P.M. - 5:00 P.M.
Olympic Collection 11301 Olympic Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90064

Don’t Put Down That Fork, Now L.A. is Having a Pizza Festival