Wild Rise brings you authentic Neapolitan pizza a lot like what you would have eaten in 1800s Naples, when everything was handmade with wild, fresh, natural ingredients. Because we want you to know what’s so special about what you’re eating, here’s the lowdown on what goes into the pizza:
The dough: Flour, salt, water, and wild yeast…only.
Our unbleached, unbromated flour is stone-ground and imported from Naples with no additives. Into that is blended whole grain flour that we stone-grind in-house. The salt we use is mined from untouched primordial seabeds and contains so many natural essential minerals that it tints the dough the same reddish hue as natural mineral spring waters. Then we bring out the wild yeast.
Eating dough made with wild yeast versus commercial yeast is like eating wild-caught sushi versus factory-farmed salmon. The difference in taste is profound.
Our wild yeast is a constantly propagating culture with a dozen organisms including different species of wild yeasts and bacteria that live in a happy symbiotic community. This culture is meticulously fed a careful diet and kept at optimum conditions in a scientific incubator. Each organism adds a different note to the crust resulting in a subtle orchestra of flavor.
From raw ingredients to finished pizza crust, our dough undergoes a 2-3 day journey of elaborate mixing procedures, precise temperature control, and careful handling culminating to produce the unique flavors and texture of Wild Rise pizza.
Not to mention health benefits. In earlier times, the natural leavening and laborious manual methods of baking used preserved and enhanced the nutrient content of food including neutralizing phytic acid, minimizing oxidation, and supplying a panoply of nutrients. Because we replicate these same techniques at Wild Rise, our pizza is more healthful than any other you’ll find. You can even feel the difference – unlike other pizza crusts, ours will not leave a heavy feeling in your stomach.
The cheese: As goes the milk, so goes the cheese. Imported from Campania, our fresh Bufala mozzarella is made from the milk of a particular species of Italian water buffalo. Historians argue over how exactly these water buffalo were brought to Italy in the 12th century—whether from Asia or Arabia—but it is known that production in Naples was interrupted during World War II, when Nazis slaughtered the area’s water buffalo herds, making them scarce. Today, these gentle, friendly, inquisitive creatures live in small farms complete with massager brushes for back scratches. Their milk has a high fat content, with a taste reminiscent of cream. And the natural lactic cultures used to make the cheese harmonize with the natural lactic cultures used to make our dough.
The Sauce: Only one kind of tomato: San Marzano, which takes its complex, mineral flavor from the volcanic soil surrounding Mount Vesuvius. Pure, crushed tomatoes and sea salt—that’s all. Frequently labeled as the heirloom variety, San Marzanos are thin and pointy with thick flesh, few seeds, and are strong and sweet with a less acidic taste.
The Basil: Pure whole leaf and as fresh as possible. And importantly, added before cooking, not after, so the basil oil infuses the rest of the pie as it cooks, integrating itself into the pie. Soon, we’ll be using a hydroponically grown true Neapolitan Basil otherwise not available in the States.
The Extras: Hardneck garlic, house-cut pepperoni, Crimini mushrooms, Shiitake mushrooms, fresh oregano, each has its own story about how it’s the best we can find and why it works so well with our pizza. Just ask any Wild Rise team member, and taste for yourself.