Rolling Stone Mobile Pizza at the Albany Farmer's Market

(Not sure if Rolling Stone is still operating. Their website isn't working and there has been no action on their FB page for over a year.)

In my book, pizza is a major food group all unto itself. Complex and complete, it either delivers peak-experience gustatory pleasure, or devastating disappointment. This spring's pursuit has been for the best wood fired pizza available. Salem proper is lacking in options, but the hills and valleys surrounding us are spotted with the comforting scent of a wood fire and the dry warmth radiating from the bricks beneath it that will cook a pizza in short order, delivering a light char that makes tomato sauce pop and cheese bubble.

Today, a new winner came to the list, and is far out ahead! We toured area farmer's markets (Salem, Independence, Albany then Corvallis), taking in the rich colors of the valley amidst dappled sunlight and the occasional raindrop. In Albany, I squealed with delight as I saw a mobile wood fired oven, having read of the phenomenon online. Running up to the table, a few happy smiling faces of pizza makers greeted me, along with a clear menu board that listed toping options and whether they were (L)ocal, (N)atural or (O)rganic. They serve a breakfast pizza with egg, sausage and cheese but I wanted to try my favorite: pepperoni. Scot, who was more interested in breakfast fare at first, perked up a bit when he saw the yumminess emerging from the oven.

Chatting with the ovenmaster, he invited me back to take a peek inside at the bubbling goodness, and we talked a bit about the design and build. I asked whether what we were seeing was the result of a few rounds of concept development or instant divine inspiration, and one of the makers looked over his shoulder and kindly said that this concept has been refined for thousands of years, they just made one.

(That's the universe kicking me in the ass so that I'll stop TALKING about making a tiny one in my back yard and JUST DO IT.)

Out came our pie, perfectly sized for one (or for two to share as they eat their way through the Willamette Valley, as we were). The ingredients are PRIMO. The cheese is creamy and plentiful, the sauce is a light, chunky tomato marinara with fresh bits of herbs. The pepperoni was tasty without being greasy, and it all mingled together atop a medium thickness crust that was the perfect mix of soft inside and crisp outside, with a light char in parts. Just enough on the edge to give you a good taste of the flavorful dough, and to hold on to it. Totally edible without utensils.

We both christened it, after we consumed it, The Best We've Ever Had. And I'm a total pizza slut... I've had pizza from MANY different places. And I'm not afraid to admit that in a pinch, I won't be picky. But... experiencing this level of pizza perfection just might make it impossible to settle for less.

They are mobile, so check out their web site to see where they are and when!


d. davis said...

That sounds awesome, makes a trek to Albany an easy sell.

Speaking of pizzas, here's a tip for mourners of the Apizza sized hole left in the valley's New Haven style pizza options: If you are up for a drive, Double Mountain in Hood River serves up pizzas with a great char and no Apizza Scholls attitude. We stopped there after a long hike and it was amazing.

Unknown said...

Just an FYI. THANK you oregon! and thanks for this wonderful review. I and a good friend-brother were the owner/operators of Rolling Stone Pizza. We had a blast, but family constraints required us to move on. Thanks much for the experience.


KandN said...

Thanks for the update, Dan. I noticed that someone was unsuccessfully trying to access your old website today. When I checked your FaceBook, I had a feeling you needed to move on. Let us know if you're able to craft that pizza again.