Who's using an awesome pepperoni??

I’m still on the hunt for the perfect pepperoni. I suppose it’s going to be a lot like cheese when asking folks to share what their “favorite” is, but I’m still going to ask.

I’d love to find that tasty, peppery, garlicky, not too salty, brand to finish off our pizza.

Another food show coming up next week so maybe we’ll score there, but till then…what’s your fav? We’ve used a private label “Nuccio” and was happy with it in all regards, then after about 6 cases found out it was “seconds”. No std. from case to case and the next couple we received were not what we’d grown accustomed to. I’m trying a box of Doskocil right now but am not impressed with the favor it’s giving us. Tried Hormel from SAMS…bland.

Wanna’ share what you’re using?

I’ve used a brand called Liguria for about 10 years now. I’ve been very happy with it!

sams club is great for pricing but nothing else, I suggest looking in to Fontanini.
What food show is coming up? is it the one in Chicago on navy pear?

@ Rockstar Ron…10-4 on the SAMS, they were what I had available for the couple of years before we opened while I was messing around with the recipes etc. The food show is just the regional show for Hawkeye Foodservice that they hold in Peoria IL. I’m not familiar with the Navy Pier show, do you have more info? I’m not sure if they get over to your neck of the woods or not, I know they have a distribution center in Danville Il though. I’ve been using them for about 75% of my goods currently.

We’re using Sugardale brand 4 our pepperoni…we get it @ RD…pretty consistent…yrs ago used a ‘special’ Hormel brand that was supposed to be "flatter’ (not folded) in the package, & hence easier to place on the pie

   Does fontanini sell pepperoni?  If they do, do they manufacture it or is it made by someone else and rebranded as a fontanini product?

  I would recommend getting samples from hormel, tyson, patrick cudahy, and burke as well as any other regional brands in your area.  Ask them for samples of all of their different products.  You will be looking at over 20 products and you will very quickly be able to narrow it down to the 3-5 that most interest you.  Let your employees, family and friends help you pick out your #1.  Keep good notes about which is your #2 and 3 because if #1 doesn't prove to be consistent you don't want to have to repeat the whole process.

Pepperoni has been a sort of elusive thing for me as well. I find that the key is . . . I gotta bake it on my pie. So many good pepperoni’s I have eaten out of hand tasted fabulous, then didn’t work right on my sauce/cheese. Perfect Pizzas made a great suggestion of keeping notes on three of them. Heck, make a scale of the most important elements of your pepperoni (taste, cupping, oil off, garilc, peppery, salty, char, etc.) and get all the info together.

Bake it on a pizza alone, and with a few toppings. I use hormel, which does pretty well by itself or with mushroom. It tends to disappear a little with ham, sausage, beef and bacon. BUT, my customers like a mild pepperoni.

I have been using Patrick Cudahay code 15430 pepperoni it is the best! It cups tne sides gets crispy, a little spicy and not salty also you get a little pool of that oh so good drop of grease in the bottom of the cupped pepperoni. :smiley:

Completely agree. There are a lot of products that I think are “great” that just do not come out “great” on our pie. i.e. there’s a link sausage we get from a local Italian deli that we use for our pastas and sandwiches that I love but when I tried it in bulk form on our pizzas the flavor was completely lost.

I too used nuccio for a while. My vendors stopped carrying it and that was that. I like hormel as my second option.

I have been using Margherita Fine Pepperoni for about 30 years. It is the 12"" sticks we slice ourselves. In my opinion it is the most flavorful and best you can buy. It our area people love this. In other areas it is different.Bottom line is every area has different tastes Find out what is best for your clientele. In my experience in some areas they like pepperoni that doesn’t have much flavor and just sits there on the pizza. I think its called a pizza sausage. In others it has to have more flavor and be a little more greasy like ours(greasy is not so bad) Thats what adds alot of flavor to your pizza and dough. This works for us may not be right for you though. Just my opinion.

If you are interested in sampling pepperoni from Burke, please contact me or fill our our Sample Request Form.

After you decide which one you like, ask specifically about that brand. A couple of companies we have used were very inconsistent both in flavor and difficulty in use.

Before opening, I spent a lot of time looking for a unique pepperoni that would not be to offensive (Sopresetta is great, but customers at a family style pizzeria would probably be turned off). Volpi out of Saint Louis was fantastic but was a bit expensive. There was also a really good one out of Ohio (sorry, forgot the name) but they did not distribute to Missouri yet. In the end, I selected Rosa Grande (a premium Hormel brand - apparently a sausage company that they bought). It’s small diameter, coarsely ground. It cups up great and gets the right amount of crispy. It imparts a great flavor to my pies and is pretty easy to work with. It’s pretty expensive. But if you’re looking for a product that will help distinguish you, this could be one. We label it as “Old World Pepperoni” on our menu to establish differentiation. It’s been very popular.

Good luck

Fontanini carries a 30 day naturally aged thick random sliced pepperoni that is awesome. Looks like it was hand cut.

@ Rachel, the link to your sample request form directs people to go here: http://info.burkecorp.com/sample-request

I recommend talking with your food rep, that is what you are paying them for. Have them bring you every pepperoni they have until you find the perfect one. Tasting at a food show isn’t going to be the same as how the flavors blend with your sauce and cheese cooked in your oven. FWIW we use Margherita, but you need to find the one that works best for your product.

I think the pepperoni you are referring to is Ezzo. We have sampled it & love it as well. If we ever switch, it will be to that!


I have been very happy with what Hormel has for their pepperoni, It surprised me that it was good, because I typically do not associate that brand name with a higher quality product.

Di Giovanni ,love it , $3.03 per lb