Jeremy New is an early riser. Just after dawn, he arrives at the cozy, whimsically decorated dining space that is East Village Bohemian Pizzeria and kindles the logs in the oven, whose fire will eventually reach 900 degrees. That done, it’s time to make the dough.
Made fresh daily from flour imported from Italy, the dough requires time to rest so that the yeast and sugars can do their work. New then makes the sauce by hand-crushing the finest Italian San Marzano tomatoes. That’s it.
At 5 p.m. the kitchen opens. New has already put in a full day’s work, but still bursting with energy, he begins making a Pizza Margherita. He shapes the dough in his hand, flattening it but leaving an outer ridge. Then he puts it on a wooden peel, already dusted with flour, and presses it into a thin flat circle. Carefully, he spreads sauce on top, drizzles extra virgin olive oil and sprinkles sea salt and cracked pepper. He adds a handful of marinated cherry tomatoes and a few roasted garlic cloves. Then comes mozzarella imported from Naples. A few artfully placed sprigs of basil complete the picture, and then, the long, shovel-like peel is placed in the oven. New positions the pizza in the hottest part of the oven, and slowly, using the peel, rotates it to crisp each section of the crust. Then he shifts it to a cooler spot and rotates it again. Finally, he raises the peel so the pizza almost kisses the roof of the oven to sear the cheese. Then out it comes.
Each pizza is unique, an individual work of art: Asymmetric, dappled with char marks and big, doughy bubbles, oozing with sauce and melted cheese. With years of training at a culinary school in Los Angeles and work at various Tulsa fine dining establishments under his belt, New has designed a long menu of innovative pizza choices, including a red potato and goat cheese pizza and a decadent S’more dessert calzone. But order the simple, traditional Margherita, because it’s perfect. 818 E. Third St., Tulsa. www.eastvillagebohemian.com