“Mangia bene! “ [Eat well] -Chef Anthony Russo. The Russo’s Dalma Mall “Grand Launch” was a private event, as guests are welcomed by CEO himself along with Marketing team and during the event there is a free flow on Pizza and appetizers via attentive hostesses. You won’t miss the store at this location in mall because it is located right near the Cinemas. This restaurant displayed a Russo’s board at the entrance and there is a strong aroma indication to guide to further !
Had an incredible time at the festive cooking demo at Russo’s by none other than the man himself, founder and Chef Anothony Russo. The variety and colors are so fresh and yummy. It can literally turn an adult into a child in a pizza world. Today, you can find Russo’s New York Pizzeria all around the world. Yet, it is no typical franchise. No matter which location it is, almost everything is made in-house, from the pizza dough to the gnocchi and mainly handpicked and exported from their sorted locations.
All in all it was great evening I simple loved the menu of the night in Starters my favorite were Caprese Salad, Pomodora Brushetta and Fried Portobello Mushrooms. Of course you can’t beat their originals Cheese and Chicken Rustica Pizzas !! Lasagna Al forno was indeed a great touch and how can I not mention very tempting Panna Cotta & Tiramisu. I am not a huge fan of Risotto however did taste their Porcini one with drizzled Truffle Oil and it is indeed very delicious! One could smell the oven baked pizza while you are just passing near cine royal on the same floor. I’m normally not a fan of the thin crust, but this is the right blend of crisp and juicy with each slice covered with fresh toppings. Russo’s is worth a visit. The quality of food and service definitely won’t disappoint! Russo is the story of a chef with immense dreams and have done it in grace, someone who was able to take a winning perception and wrap up it in a way that, in the hands of the right people, can be replicated over and over again. Anthony Russo has developed one of the first New York-style pizzeria concept in Houston, after Mastering his family’s recipes for his own restaurants, he took the idea and started franchising it. That concept was Russo’s New York Pizzeria. I loved the opportunity to taste some of the finest Russo’s creation customized that day and to know about him and chat over some desserts in late evening on same day. We break it down our cluster conversation with him into below main Q & A: Where do you source your ingredients from? Some from Italy and some from US. What about the local market, do you think it’s readily available or is it the procedures and policy of the company/ management decision? It involves a lot of items about 60-70 and in most of the cases we usually bring it from abroad. You have a lot of Arab based and UAE restaurants? Do you adjust/alter your recipes to meet the demand of the customers in this region? The recipes do not change much, except recipes where it’s pertaining to the nature of ingredients and meat (halal) to be replaced others which do not involve any such obligations remain same and as healthy and full of taste as I have inherited and created some hence It’s a family recipes which we are making for years. What sort of R&D is involved, as you have to make sure it shall be liked by the residents here and matches to their taste buds? Indeed. We want clients & foodies in every market to suit the liking for our food, whether locally or internationally, to enjoy their experience at Russo’s. A big part of that is integrating local gastronomy and ingredients into dishes. Luckily in case of UAE it’s quite Mediterranean and this is a plus for us and a lot of material like egg-plant, veggies cheese and sauces are rich in such tastes and help us win over the hearts of locals and other nationalities in the region. What about the chefs at different outlets of Russo’s , are the only from particular region? No, they vary however all of them are being trained for one month to six weeks under an extensive program, even in some locations I’d come in to train them and show them how to do it. I teach them how to cook and carry on the family recipe, I won’t mind doing it as I love my family recipes and treasure them. I wanted to make sure when I handed it off to someone who pizza was going to taste really like New York-style pizza. We make sure that the recipes are ideal. That, no matter who maneuvers the restaurant, the food is going to taste the same as I would make it from our family recipe. What is the reason behind Russo’s being distinctive? It’s the ingredients that you use. Also the simplicity which goes in making this Italian cuisine, the beauty of compatibility and adaptability of its taste by different customs and regions. It has to be high-quality and you need to know what kind of flour to use, back home I pick all the ingredients from flour till veggies on my own. I use high-gluten flour with the highest protein. It’s milled in a certain part of Illinois. The flour, the cheese and the sauce is significant. How many branches in region? We have 6 units in total, and are planning to have 10 more in the coming year. However, in the next month we will be opening a branch in Riyadh. What is the biggest challenge you face here in this region? To maintain the quality, as I have been to some place here in UAE and it was really different from the US, in terms of quality, I found it that it is quite challenging to keep the same level of quality that we find in the US, although it is improved over the years, as you can find the best category of Parmesan over here due to export. We also have to bring in ingredients from abroad to maintain the quality of food and that is the only challenge we face. What is the biggest strength you have and what advice you want to give to my readers? My biggest strength is food off course, cause if not, we would not be successful. The only food advice I can give to your readers is if they require pizza and pasta, only go to russo’s 😉 Disclaimer & Notes: A huge Thank you to CEO, host Marketing team at Russo’s, Prime Hospitality, Mutaz (for coordination), charming Layal, Suzzane & most Importantly my favorite Chef Anthony RUSSO! from NY Pizzeria. We were guests there however it did not influence our thoughts and reviews, all opinions content are our own. You can not use any pics without prior permission.