PLY - Art Space / Pizzeria in Manchester, UK

A brand new art space is opening in Manchester next week and it’s going to be amazing! Why? Because when you’re exhausted from looking at amazing art, you can relax by the Stefano Ferrara oven and order yourself a pizza. 

Following Neapolitan tradition, the pizzas at PLY will bake in about 90 seconds! To celebrate their opening, PLY asked a bunch of people to submit 90 second films, each of which will play on loop at a pre-opening exhibition. I was honored to receive the invitation, so if you’re in Manchester and want some pizza with your art I strongly you suggest the masterpiece I shot in my living room in about 15 minutes. It’s a classic.It may or may not feature pizza boxes. 

PLY | 8 Stevenson Square | Manchester | M1 1FB
www.plymcr.co.uk

EVENING VIEW: Thursday, August 7, 6pm – 8pm
EXHIBITION: August 8-17, 6am – 11pm daily

I tasted a bunch of different frozen pizzas for BuzzFeed in an effort to answer one of the most common questions I get on pizza tours: WHAT’S THE BEST FROZEN PIZZA ON THE MARKET? 

Of course videos like this are made to be funny, but I want to clarify some technical questions that might pop into some of the more inquisitive pizza minds:

1. We baked each pizza according to the instructions on the box, so if a pie looks funky you can blame the pizza company. 

2. This does not represent every brand on the market, so don’t freak out because we didn’t try Tombstone or Freschetta or whatever your favorite frozen pizza may be. BuzzFeed brought 8 pies but one was microwave only (we only had an oven) and one got cut for time (Amy’s Organic, which I usually like but did not on this tasting). 

3. I grew up eating Ellio’s so I enjoyed it during this taste test even though I would never go out of my way to eat it.

4. I gave each pizza a rating out of 5 stars but none made it over 3.5 so they didn’t include them in the edit. 

5. Obviously frozen pizza should be judged on a different scale than fresh pies but since some these companies claim they deliver quality comparable to pizzeria products we really should hold them accountable. 

Brazilian Pizza Boxes will Blow Your Mind

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I recently spent a whopping 40 hours in São Paulo, Brazil and my brain almost exploded from excitement. São Paulo has had pizza for over 100 years and there are so many pizzerias in town that nobody really knows the exact count (it’s in the thousands). I ate some pizza, but my biggest takeaway had to do with the pizza boxes. They are insane. 

You can see in the photo above that Brazilian pizza boxes don’t look like normal pizza boxes. First of all, they’re not square. I get the question all the time “Why does a round pizza go into a square box?” Squares are easier to deal with in manufacturing and assembly. It takes much less time to assemble a standard American pizza box, but what’s the fun in a boring square box when you can get octagons like they have in Brazil!?!?

Once you recover from the shock of octagonal pizza boxes, take a closer look at the artwork. All three boxes in the above photo contain funny die-cut shapes on their lids. The one all the way to the left becomes a soccer field, complete with goal posts that pop into place and a two-piece soccer ball that snaps together for gameplay. But the other two boxes get even crazier.

Here’s what the box all the way to the right looks like when you snap out and assemble all the pieces:

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The box all the way to the right is even more incredible. This photo shows the same box construction with a different pizzeria’s design:

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Mind = blown. 

But Brazil doesn’t stop there. Before the octagon appeared on the scene, Brazil was all about the round pizza box. Very few pizzerias still use these due to their high price point (molding the lids and bases is extremely expensive and takes up LOADS of space inside the pizzeria) but I managed to get my hands on a couple for the collection

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Let’s recover from the shock of all these crazy shapes and get to the really exciting part. The city of São Paulo has a unique feature on their boxes I have never seen anywhere else. Box bases have side tabs that lock into the lid. The concept is that this feature will prevent the delivery guy from tampering with (ie eating) the pizza. I’m not kidding.  

Here it is in action:

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According to Pizzerias Unidas, a trade association for Brazilian pizzerias, a city council member once found that his delivered pizza was missing some olives. He was obviously upset and did what any great politician would do: he pushed a law to protect others from similar pizza fraud. As of May 2008, “Restaurants and other companies that are delivering food for immediate consumption are required to use a warranty seal or seal on packaging for delivery.” A delivery with broken locks gets sent right back and the violation can incur a R$500 fine (about $225 US). Want to read the law? Check it out here. The law applies only to delivery pizzas and only in São Paulo.