Just one month after opening, a new sports bar has terminated its partnership with pizzaoulo Jay Jerrier.
As first reported by The Feast, Brackets has replaced Jerrier's Napoletana-style pies with the thicker-crust pizzas its comment card-completing customers prefer. The restaurant's also expanded its toppings menu, so ping pong players can order a pizza with bacon, jalapeños, potatoes and scrambled eggs. But they can't get Jimmy's sausage, which has been scrubbed in favor of sausage made in house.
In a Facebook post this weekend, Jerrier -- who's readying his own Deep Ellum spot for an opening next month -- indicated he wasn't disappointed by the decision:
"We are fine with the direction Brackets is taking," Jerrier wrote. "This is seriously not a big deal. It's frankly better for both of us. They need to sell the kind of pizzas their customers "get"....that's just not our sweet spot."
Jerrier helped train Brackets' staff, coaching them in oven management. But a few fans of Il Cane Rosso wondered if it was possible to produce Napoletana pies in the Brackets oven. Pizza certified by the Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana (AVPN) must be baked in a bell-shaped, wood-burning oven that's heated to at least 900 degrees.
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Peppe Miele, president of AVPN's American branch, says many rogue pizza makers skirt the requirements set out by his organization, often to the detriment of the pizza style's reputation. Although Miele is not familiar with the situation in Dallas, he wonders whether the pie that proved unpopular at Brackets was a fair representation of Napoletana pizza.
"It's like, people, first of all, don't have a good oven," he says.
When they get it right, though, their pizzas nearly always succeed -- a storyline Jerrier's undoubtedly hoping to follow at his new restaurant.
"Now there's a big momentum," Miele says. "Sometimes people, especially in the middle of the country, they don't have familiarity with the product. But for more Slow Food people, people a little more into culinary tradition, they like it now, no question."