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Updated: Dec 2, 2020

A taster of some of our pizzas

Yes, you read correctly, PF Closter now has pizza! With nights-in very much on the menu right now, pizza nights with friends and family are the perfect way to jazz up an evening at home. In case you're wondering, yes, we've got delivery covered, we work with Menufy, GrubHub and UberEats, but if you do like to stretch your legs, store pick up is also available!

Our pizzas are made to the same high PF standard you're used to, all ingredients fresh, locally sourced and made from scratch, our pastries authentically French and our pizza authentically Italian!

I asked Chef Tomer, why pizza? And where did his interest in pizza come from?

Assisi, Italian town in Umbria

''In the summer of 2018 during my Italy trip to Assisi, Umbria I left my hotel room at 3 a.m. to meet Alfio Scarponi of "Antico Forno" bakery. There I witnessed old world Italian mixing techniques of the focaccia and other Italian classics. The sensory experience inspired me to share high-hydration Pizza crust, which comes in many different styles. I have dedicated the last 5 years developing my understanding of fresh-milled flour application and the scientific microbiological structure of sourdough through nationwide visits to fellow bakers in the Carolinas, Washington State, Arkansas, Colorado and Vermont. I am proud to share the result of this adventure, in the form of a hospitable culinary experience. The menu itself is inspired by the Neapolitan and Roman approach, while including the classic NYC "everyday" pie - all of which are made with a 4-day fermentation, allowing a crunchy crust with open cell structure. The pizza is baked on Volcanic stone at 600 F before ladling our cooked Pomodoro Filletto sauce onto the pizza''.

So now you know the inspiration. Many thanks Chef Tomer for sharing!

Like our pizza menu, the history of pizza is very exciting....

Italy, home to the pizza

A Slice of History

Did you know:

The first pizza is thought to have been invented in Naples in the early 1500s the lower-income people of Naples would put slices of tomatoes on dough and top it with cheese to make a cheap and easy meal for their families. In Europe, during this time, tomatoes were thought to be poisonous, which is why pizza was considered a cheaper food (turns out it wasn't the tomatoes poisoning people after all, but the lead content in the richer folk's plates!).

Foods similar to pizza have been made since antiquity. Records of people adding other ingredients to bread to make it more flavorful can be found throughout ancient history and all over the world, to name a few examples: In the 6th century BC, Persian soldiers serving under 'Darius the Great' baked flatbreads with cheese and dates on top of their battle shields.

In Ancient Greece; citizens made a flat bread called plakous which was flavored with toppings like herbs, onion, cheese and garlic. There’s even the pizzarelle, which were 'kosher for Passover' cookies eaten by Roman Jews after returning from the synagogue during Pessach, there were also other Italian paschal breads Abba Eban writes "some scholars think [pizza] was first made more than 2000 years ago when Roman soldiers added cheese and olive oil to matzah.

In China; 'bing' (a wheat flour-based Chinese food with a flattened or disk-like shape), in Indian there is paratha and naan, a flatbread made throughout India, South Asia all the way to the Caribbean.

Chinese flatbread 'Bing'

Pizza's History in the US... With the arrival of Italian immigrants in the late 19th century pizza was popular among large Italian populations in New York City, Chicago, Philadelphia, Trenton and Saint Louis. In 1903 Giovanni and Gennaro Bruno came to America from Naples, Italy and introduced the Neapolitan pizza to Boston. Later, Vincent Bruno (Giovanni's son) went on to open the first pizzeria in Chicago. However, most maintain that the first US business to sell pizza was Lombardi's, which opened in 1897 as a grocery store at 53½ Spring Street, selling tomato pies wrapped in paper and tied with a string at lunchtime to workers from the area's factories (they were not labelled as pizza until 1905).

Despite pizza being around this long pizza only really took off in America after WWII, when former World War II soldiers stationed in Italy grew a heavy liking to pizza and upon their return to the US helped make it the popular dish it is today. By 1950s pizza was a global phenomenon and in the 1960s, it was popular enough to be featured in an episode of Popeye the Sailor.

10 Pizza facts:

1 - Nobody knows how the word Pizza originated, but it was first documented around 997 AD in Gaeta, Italy.

2 -The first pizzeria in the world was opened in the late 1800s in Port'Alba in Naples.

3 - Margherita pizza was named after Queen Margherita of Italy.

4 - Pizzas in Italy were originally square-shaped.

5 - 350 slices of pizza are eaten each second in the U.S. which is a whopping 21,000 slices eaten nationally in just one minute! Imagine the number consumed on Super Bowl Sunday when pizza delivery sales go up 35%

Worlds largest pizza

6 - The most expensive pizza is tastefully called Louis XIII, it is designed by Renato Viola and costs $12000! It is made with some of the most exclusive and rare ingredients you could think of!

7 - The world record for the largest pizza ever made was an amazing 26,833 lbs and was 122′ 8″ in diameter, made in Norwood, South Africa on December 8, 1990.

NASA 3D pizza printer

8 - NASA funded & tested a 3D printer that can make pizza for astronauts.

9 - While 61% of Americans prefer thin crust pizza, in Scotland, deep-fried pizza is a common choice & in Australia eggs are a common pizza topping, in Japan squid and mayo and in Cambodia you can get ‘Happy Pizza’ - can you guess the secret topping on that? Marijuana!

10 - Pizza has a bad reputation for being unhealthy, but it can be an amazing nutritional source. Let’s start with the tomato sauce and its high lycopene content, which is high in flavonoids so support your immune system and fight off an array of bad stuff including cancers, cardiovascular disease, inflammation and depression.

So now you know, all that's left to do is sample its nutritious deliciousness and get ordering an all new, freshly stone-baked PF pizza!

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Updated: Mar 23, 2020

These are uncertain times and whilst we are doing the best we can can to stay healthy physically, how are we looking after ourselves mentally? We are all worrying about somebody or something, this chapter in our lives requires us to unite and support each other so we can be strong against this adversity.

Dine-in restaurants have been forced to close their doors to both guests and staff. Our staff have been amazing in this time of uncertainty, demonstrating patience, resilience and support and we continue to make every effort to sustain our Patisserie Florentine family. We continue to offer a curb-side and home delivery service, which maintains some of the team, but in order to support the whole PF family the best we can, we’ve had to get creative. We put our heads together to think of ways we can offer other job opportunities to those whose usual roles are temporarily defunct. We decided on a little home-improvement project; re-vamping our Englewood and Closter stores, this project has proved to be a positive experience, keeping spirits up, we are all actively showing each other we are a community who support one another. Wait-staff and Baristas have become temporary Delivery Drivers, Dishwashers & Cooks have become Painters! We look forward to showing off the good work and seeing you all the other side, dining in our newly-improved Englewood and Closter stores. (see video of Chef Tomer and the kitchen team hard at work)

In the meantime while we endeavour to support our community in all sorts of imaginative ways, we continue to offer a quality fresh food curb-side and home delivery service, we practice social distancing and stringent hygiene measures prioritising health and wellbeing. We hope you will support us by continuing to order!

Thanks for reading 😉

Your home from home,

Patisserie Florentine

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We had an another amazing response to our art competition this year and such great feedback from the families who got involved.

The theme this year was 'The World I Love' which evoked different feelings and thoughts in the young artists. Some artists made personal journeys, their art giving an insight into their private worlds, other young artists had environmental statements to make. One common theme was a love animals in the world, it certainly seems protecting our world and animals is something very important to our youth!

This bold and beautiful self expression can be seen in our exhibition at our Closter store.

The selected finalists ranged from age 5-15, their art can be seen here above, all their art has been framed and features in the exhibition, they will all receive a Certificate of Artistic Excellence, the 6 runner's up will also receive a dessert selection box and the 1st prize winner receives a $100 gift voucher.

Once again we were inspired by the talent of our youth and over whelmed by the community spirit, families have been so supportive of the event, the general consensus is that it has been a positive experience, here are some of our favorite parent comments:

'Thanks for what you are doing!!! It’s so great for kids!!!' Elena

'Heartfelt gratitude. Kudos to all the kids who participated and sincere Thanks to the Patisserie Florentine for promoting the kids masterpieces. Please keep us posted on the future competitions. It means a lot of the kids and parents. The power and discipline that they exercise in creating these wonderful pieces, trains them for their future assignments.' Swati

'So many thanks for the opportunity to take part in this competition, which helps our kids to create and to express their feelings.' Julia

We would like to thank Eleonor Van Gelder School, North Highlands High School, One River School, Palisades Park Jr/Sr School, Rafael De J Cordero School and Stevens Cooperative School for encouraging their students to enter the competition.

We would also like to say a very special thank you to Aleona's Art Studio, Master Art Studio and Paint Zone, these three local art clubs have shown such amazing support, art clubs are so important to young art enthusiasts, they encourage young talents to be confident in their abilities and teach them skills so they can be even brighter young stars!

We are very grateful for the collective support of the schools, clubs, parents and children who entered our competition we look forward to the next competition, until then we will enjoy the richness of the art on our walls! And the winners of PF Art Competition 2020 are...

Our 1st prize winner

George, age 9

Our 3 runners-up (age 4 - 11)

Riddhi, age 7

Shlok, 8

Wendy, age 11

Our 3 runners up (age 12 - 18)

Stacey, age 12

Cameryn, age 12

Satoka, age 15

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