After establishing Adelaide Hills' pizzeria-in-a-church, Lost in a Forest, Charlie Lawrence is bringing a New York icon to the Adelaide pizza scene with New York Fold.
New York Fold brings the New York slice to BRKLYN
Charlie Lawrence, a part-owner and founder of the Adelaide Hills pizzeria-within-a-church, Lost in a Forest, descended into the life-altering world of pizza five years ago, when he built a wood oven in his backyard.
He would make pizzas for family and friends every weekend, until eventually making the substantial leap into hospitality in mid-2016 by converting his home, the aforementioned church, into a restaurant.
New York Slice
Inside BRKLYN, 260-262 Rundle Street, Adelaide 5000
Tues-Thurs: 6pm ‘til 10pm
Fri-Sat: 6pm ‘til late
Perfecting the Neapolitan style became an obsession, but all the while in the lead up to Lost in a Forest, Charlie had the vision of his latest business, New York Fold, opening this weekend within East End bar BRKLYN, in mind.
With a background in graphic design, Charlie had created the packaging for New York Fold – an oven-friendly cardboard tray with tactical perforations, designed with thin, 18-inch pizza slices in mind – even before he built his wood oven.
“I designed the tray that holds the slice maybe five or six years ago, and then I was messing around with recipes when I had my wood oven started up, just doing different bases for that,” Charlie recalls.
“I thought best that I get some runs on the board with a proper busy restaurant, learn more about hospitality industry, learn more about budgeting and costings, and who the good suppliers are in town.”
“It was hard at first, I’m not going to lie. It’s certainly a young person’s job, just with those really long nights, it was hard work.”
With a wildly successful restaurant now established, Charlie is bringing his second style to market, and an entirely new pizza experience in Adelaide.
Charlie uses Laucke’s Kangaroo Blend – a traceable single-origin bread flour – to create the perfect, malleable, foldable slice, which he has based off his experiences touring through New York.
“I jumped on a plane [recently] and flew to New York to research the style again. I think I ate at 12 pizzerias in 24 hours in New York,” Charlie says.
“There’s a place in Brooklyn called Paulie Gee’s, and that’s always been an inspirational place. He was another guy who was from an IT/marketing background years ago.
“He opened a pizza joint, and now he’s got several of them in New York and he’s quite well known in his own little world. He was not a professional baker at the time, and for me, reading those stories going ‘If he can do it, there’s no reason I can’t do it and have a go at that.’”
As for the recipes, New York Fold holds to the traditional approach of its city of origin, with minimal ingredients employed. The Hellboy is inspired directly from slice joints in NYC and features house-made chilli honey and pepperoni; the quattro formaggio uses Adelaide Hills blue cheese, mozzarella from La Casa del Formaggio, parmesan and cheddar; the broccoli and blue cheese pizza was a revelation from Charlie’s latest recon trip (“I couldn’t believe that a slice joint was offering broccoli pizza… but it worked so well. It just does”); the sausage and onion uses a house-made chilli fennel sausage; and the plain slice cheese pizza rounds out the menu. A sixth item will be added next week.
New York Slice will complement the bar’s own food offering, with a new tapas menu launching at BRKLYN just in time for the festival season. Booths overlook Rundle Street, giving diners and drinkers a unique vantage point to witness the Fringe chaos on Rundle Street unfold.
The pop-up pizza joint launches tonight, Thursday, 14 February, and will operate Tuesday-Thursday from 6pm ‘til 10pm, and Friday-Saturday 6pm ‘til 1pm and possibly later. New York Slice is in the space on a six-month Renew lease, and Charlie hopes to expand the business to multiple locations in the future.