Joe Beddia makes “America’s best pizza”, according to Bon Appétit magazine. The chef/owner of Philadelphia’s Pizzeria Beddia has also been referred to as Pizza Jesus and the Jiro of Pizza. He shrugs off what he does as “just pizza”, but people would line up many hours (sometimes even arriving before Joe got to work!) just to try his pies. He only made 40 pizzas a night – and he produced each one from scratch over the restaurant’s five-year run.
Joe is currently on a world tour that he hopes doesn’t make people hate him – he’s been to France, Italy, eaten at Noma, and he’s currently in Sydney to do a week-long pop-up at Bondi Beach Public Bar. So locals can find out whether his work can be downgraded to “just pizza”. Given that sommelier James Hird (who helped tee up the pop-up) describes eating at Pizzeria Beddia as one of his favourite ever food memories, you won’t want to miss Joe’s Australian-inspired versions of his pies while he’s here.
Joe also talks about life-changing pizza experiences in Tokyo, how he ended up spending his 40th birthday with comedian Eric Wareheim and how he essentially produced his Pizza Camp cookbook using his home oven. Oh and he also memorably recaps the time he attempted a stunt with a blindfold, razor, shaving cream and no pants in the hopes of winning $10,000 and a trip to the Playboy Mansion.
You can check out Joe’s Sydney pop-up (from July 22 to July 28, 6pm until late at the Bondi Beach Public Bar) before he opens Pizzeria Beddia 2.0 in Philadelphia at the end of the year.
You can listen to this episode on Apple Podcasts or download it via RSS or directly. You can even find it on Stitcher and Google Podcasts nowadays. And thanks to everyone who has left a nice review in Apple Podcasts or has spread the word about this show – especially Roger, who said hi at the Good Podcast, Crap Drawing launch (the exhibition is still on for another week at New Moon in Lewisham, if you want to check out my collaboration with Anna Vu)!
And here’s Joe’s menu for his pizza pop-up, if you’re curious (or need to pre-plan your ordering)!
- Tomato, whole milk mozzarella, aged cheddar, extra virgin olive oil (available with spicy salami or mushroom)
- Rainbow chard, cream, garlic, lemon, chive
- Tomato pie, anchovy, garlic, oregano, aged cheddar
- Pizza arrabbiata
Photography courtesy of Pizzeria Beddia/Bondi Beach Public Bar.