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Regional Pizza Styles of the Near-Distant Future
Alex Beggs delivers some hot and sizzling pizza prognostications
[The following in an excerpt from Pizza Futures, a forecast of pizza’s future by Nobell Foods. You can download your copy here.]
In the near- and far-distant future, when all the possible versions of your name have been claimed on Gmail, there are some certainties amidst the foggy unknown. Our climate will never be the same, well, duh. And pizza will definitely still exist. No vitamin-filled milkshake or chewy nutrient pill can compete with hot lava rivers of cheese and puffy, leopard-spotted crust. But as our regions transform with the doomed weather patterns, how will our regional pizza styles? A look into our pepperoni grease-covered crystal ball…
Submerged Miami-Style Pizza
When Miami is slowly submerged by rising Gulf waters, the view will still be too beautiful to leave. All of the new luxury high-rises, designer retailers, and fine dining establishments will install submarine infrastructure to keep their vibrant city alive and bumpin’ underwater. Submerged Miami-Style Pizza will be renowned for its waterproof crust made from locally sourced kelp flour, lobster pepperoni, and solar-powered slow-cooked sauce. Like everything about the submerged Miami lifestyle, this pizza is extremely expensive—and delivered by domesticated dolphins.
In the rough and tumble years after the devastating Tesla Wars, communities will flee their rental homes owned by tech monopolies and form new communes in the wilderness of Vermont where there is no WiFi, but plenty of puzzles. Off-the-Grid-Style Pizza is a humble pie with an imperfect oval shape made with regenerative ancient grain dough (it has a speckled look and nice chew), organic dandelion greens, and foraged mushrooms of questionable poison content, which adds an air of mystery—and umami. It’s served in a handwoven jute pizza box that can be repurposed as a bathmat.
Santa Ana Wind-Style Pizza
As desert conditions and drought intensify in California and the western states, and water imports become prohibitively expensive, a new style of low-moisture pizza will emerge like a cactus in a foundation crack. Santa Ana Wind-Style Pizza will have a thin, cracker-like crust made from tumbleweed seeds and old Amazon boxes (edible in small amounts, high in fiber), topped with powdered mozzarella (eat quickly before it flies off during wind gusts), spent wine grape balsamic drizzle, and spicy coyote jerky. Some locals like to sprinkle on crushed longhorn beetle flakes for added crunch and protein. But that’ll cost extra.
Detroit Bowling Alley-Style Pizza
When the electric car market finally takes off and property taxes decrease in the temperate city of Detroit, a new pizza style will reflect the region’s burst of optimism. Detroit Bowling Alley-Style Pizza is still square, like Detroit-style pizza, but it’s only available in crowded bowling alleys, an old sport that will be renewed in popularity when communities realize how damn fun it is. The sauce is made from local greenhouse organic tomatoes grown by one of the thousands of community farms in the state, the cheese is imported from Wisconsin in exchange for good Michigan beer, and the pepperoni is either sustainably-hunted venison or soybean-based (and quite tasty). After spending years as a contentious political and ideological battleground, Bowling Alley pizza will be the thing that unites this once-divided state, and when the pizza’s popularity spreads, maybe even the entire country.
We’re foretelling that the makers of cozy fleece pullovers will inspire a generation of idealists who will form a new political party (called the Good Guys), and Patagonia-Style Pizza will take the nation by storm. Not only is the pizza made with entirely sustainable, kind of fuzzy vegan ingredients, but it’s delivered by bicyclists whose pedaling charges portable heaters that keep the pizza warm and powers speakers that blast the Grateful Dead. Every pizza ordered sends another pizza to a person in need, even if they don’t like vegan pizza or the Dead.
Pocket-sized and actually tinned, Meta-Style Pizza will be a unique invention, really a last straw, from the tech company that once tried to take over the world. In a final grasp for relevancy, their personal-sized pizza will be designed to be as addicting as possible, with toppings acutely targeted to the eater based on blood reports the company bought from your primary care physician in a legal loophole. The crust tends to shatter when it comes into contact with surfaces, any surfaces, but its blend of 14 cheeses and flavor powders is almost irresistible and definitely not FDA-approved. Those who purchase a two-week warranty can replace it once consumed, while others will learn to miss it when it’s gone, but only just barely.
Alex Beggs is a writer and copywriter based in Ann Arbor, Michigan.