Giovanni Barbieri fell in love with New York three years ago, while he was visiting the Big Apple to practice his English. He soon realized that NY was the place to be, and decided that he wanted to open a pizzeria there.
However, before leaving Italy, Giovanni attended the Università della Pizza, the pizza-making course organized by Petra Molino Quaglia. Thanks to this course, Giovanni was able to create the exact idea of pizza he had in mind. He started serving his pizza in the family kiosk in Schio, a town in the Veneto region. The pizza was a great success and it gave him the right boost of confidence to make his dream come true. The BIGA pizzeria was opened on 13th November 2018, in Lower East Side, New York, and Giovanni decided to take Petra flours along with him in this new adventure.
Giovanni has clear ideas about the product that he wants to offer his customers. His pizzas owe their unique textures and flavors to the biga technique used to prepare the dough. The pizzas he produces are very different from other pizzas on the market. The pizza base is fragrant, light and crispy. With this technique, Giovanni prepares three different styles of pizza. The first is a traditional round pizza, prepared using Petra 3 flour or a mix of Bonsemì, Petra 3 and 9, for a whole grain version. The second is a peel pizza, and the third is its filled version. Both of them are prepared using Petra Unica or Panettone flour. All these flours ensure a higher content of fiber and proteins, allowing each bite to be tasty and healthy at the same time. The hydration rate of both doughs is very high, 75% for the round pizza and up to 90% for the peel pizza. The biga rests for 20 hours at room temperature, and then the dough leavens in the refrigerator for another day.
Giovanni, following his family tradition, is proud to offer a high quality service: “The best part of my job is to make other people happy. I love seeing their happy and relaxed faces while they are enjoying a pizza at BIGA.”
The menu at BIGA is young and dynamic, just like its owner. Customers can choose both the pizza base and their favorite toppings. Giovanni is always on hand to give precious advice on the perfect match. The ingredients are mostly sourced from Italy. However, the young pizzaiolo decided to include fresh local products: “After a long search, I discovered a high quality mozzarella cheese produced in a farm close to the restaurant, in New Jersey.” It seems like Giovanni has been able to create the perfect combination between Italian and American ingredients, with top-quality as their main leitmotif.
And customers really appreciate the high quality pizzeria. Sempre Bona is the most popular pizza, topped with hand crushed tomato sauce, sun dried tomatoes, fresh burrata and San Daniele ham. La Parmigiana is the choice of many vegetarian customers, with its characteristic eggplant and Parmesan cheese topping.