Corey Shapiro is a Montreal-based entrepreneur, fashion historian, and director of several global brands, including Notorious Barbershop and Vintage Frames, supplier of designer eyewear to an elite clientele that includes The Kardashians, Lady Gaga, and Jay-Z.
Have you eaten a lot of pizza in your life?
My stepmom is Italian and she used to make her own homemade pizza, so I grew up eating all sorts of Italian food, including pizza.
What will you be looking for as a pizza judge?
I think the sauce is a major factor. I’m not necessarily big on pizza with a lot of cheese, for example. I prefer basic tastes, something that’s really fresh, the right ratio of sauce-to-dough, but I don’t necessarily have a favourite style of pizza. I really like to try different people’s interpretation of pizza. It’s always interesting to see the way that different cultures have their own cooking style. I kinda like people to rock on their own so I can just taste whatever their position is.
What are some of the more interesting experiments you’ve come across?
I tried this 24-karat gold and truffle pizza in New York. That was kinda ill. They brought it in to the hotel for us during an appointment with a musician. I’m obviously into gold and it was heavy on the truffles so you couldn’t really go wrong. My favourite pizza is from a place here in the city though. They have this hamburger pizza. I don’t normally eat very many hamburgers or a lot of meat and cheese, but for me that’s the best combination of those ingredients.
Do you have any great pizza memories?
My grandfather, when he had a successful week, on Sundays, he would bring home pizza for us. That was how we knew that there was something to celebrate. So the idea of celebration is almost always associated with pizza in my mind. I do much more extravagant things than buy pizzas when I celebrate with my employees, obviously, but pizza is always going to be connected with my grandfather and with my success in some way.