I am a third-generation pizza Chef, who has spent a lot of my childhood around pizza makers in my father and grandfather.
My great-grandfather and great-aunt arrived in Australia from Italy and this is the beginning of the pizza journey. Their love for food and creation expanded within their family and soon my grandfather had opened a pizza shop with his best friend, using the recipes passed down from his father.
I would spend afternoons and evenings in the pizza shop helping my grandfather with simple tasks like rolling the dough balls, or stirring the sauce. Watching my role model work as hard as he did was the beginning of the fire in my belly.
Not long after, my father opened many other pizza shops around the Sydney area. I completed school and worked through an apprenticeship before realising that my true dream was with pizza.
I left my trade and worked with my father in his pizza shop and it was here that I was able to learn the true art of pizza making, using the recipes that were passed down through the generations.
My passion grew even stronger until I was given the opportunity to open my own pizzeria in Earlwood.
This was a big milestone in my life and I was ready to face any problem that would come my way. We started with one oven and a few small fridges in the shop, within a few months my demand grew so large that we required a second oven and put in a cool room to cater for the large amounts of fresh produce we were going through.
In our first year, we won the local business awards for best take away and this also boosted the popularity of the pizzeria.
By our second year of opening we were achieving more goals and working towards the bigger picture of being the best service and product in Earlwood.
Our history is always important to us and that is prominent when you enter the shop as we keep a record of our business achievements and family members on the wall to remind us every day why we do what we do.
always wanted to be a Chef?
Growing up with my role models being my father and grandfather has really helped me understand that my passion was always cooking and pizza making. The smells from entering their shops always transported me to a place of happiness and it was from then that I knew I was going to follow in their footsteps.
How would you define your style?
Thin and crispy slow-cooked base, layered with homemade flavours.
What is your feature flavour these days?
Slow-cooked Napolitana sauce, homemade olive tapenade, lime leaf and lemongrass satay sauce.
Keeping true to my family recipes and traditional flavours that I have been shown but also innovating and adding my own style in the food I produce.
Your greatest culinary influence:
What do you love about this business?
I love that I can bring happiness to customers, family and friends. My team is my second family and this makes every day as enjoyable as the last!
An ingredient you can’t live without?
Vine-ripened tomatoes from Italy.
Most ‘eyebrow-raising’ menu item?
25-inch pizza available with four traditional flavours.
Pancetta, ricotta cheese, sun-dried tomatoes garlic and roasted pine nuts, garnished with freshly sliced Italian pancetta, homemade black olive tapenade and fresh basil.
Generations of pizza making are on the menu at Dani and Fiori’s Gourmet Pizzeria on Homer Street in Earlwood. This Italian eatery proudly displays the family history with a black and white photo gallery on one wall, as third-generation pizza maker Fiori is behind the counter, using fresh local produce to tempt all who enter with tantalising aromas from the oven. On warm days, sit alfresco and watch the world pass by while devouring a starter of garlic King prawns, Napolitana sauce, chilli and garlic bread. Pasta lovers can twirl a fork around traditional spaghetti Bolognese and meatballs; or pick up a slice of gourmet pizza like Lucky’s Special – Italian sausage, onion, feta, grilled eggplant, roasted garlic, olives and oregano. Finish with chocolate mousse, or Nutella pizza for dessert.