Cooking Channel's Best in Chow Brought the Pizza War to Fort Lauderdale
If you caught the Cooking Channel's Best in Chow Season 2 episode last night, "BBQ Wars Miami," you'll know that yet another TV show has rolled through our tip of the state looking for picturesque backdrops and culinary drama. The BBQ episode pitted Downtown joint Sparky's Roadside Barbecue with North Miami's Bo Legs BBQ and Biscayne Corridor eatery Bulldog Barbecue & Burger. The premise is simple and not entirely unlike other food shows that showcase similar cuisine by area and creates competition out of thin air.
Host Cris Nannarone, a standup comedian with a large appetite, opens every segment of the triptych by engaging people on the street and asking them where he can find some good "(insert thematic food here)." He then does a small intro to the restaurant, meets the chefs/owners, witnesses the creation of a signature dish and samples it. At the end of the show, the people he spoke with on the street are invited to each restaurant to sample the food and tally up points. Those points are then added up and a winner is declared.
In Miami, Sparky's and Bo came down to a tie in the tally and Nannarone broke it in favor of Bo Legs BBQ. This episode was filmed in January of this year and while they were here, they also used it as an opportunity to film a Pizza War in Ft. Lauderdale.
Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza
Airing immediately after, the "Pizza Wars Ft. Lauderdale" show put the challenge on Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza's Meatball and Ricotta pie against kitchenetta's Bianco di Parma and Dough Boys' Margherita with Seafood. All three pies sound like fun but what is certainly not fun is Nannarone's demeanor and slight "having it his way" attitude. If you're going to judge someone's creation, shouldn't you let them create? Nannarone's insistence that his pies be "well done" was kind of annoying.
At Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza, he introduced owner Anthony Bruno and pizzaiolo Michelangelo Mozzicato who spoke about their chain of stores and their meatball guy while poor Pepe worked the oven in the background, looking a little sad at the mention that he had not had a day off since he started at the oven in 1999. Small talk was also made with longtime business partner Dan Marino in the parking lot and when the beloved Dolphins quarterback mentioned the cauliflower-topped pizza, Nannarone made his disgust known.
This man also seems to hate vegetarians.