3-Day Intensive Professional Class

Start Smart! – The Fundamentals of Opening and Operating a Pizzeria with John Arena, Giulio Adriani and Scott Wiener

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Class Overview

This 3-Day exploration covers the essentials of managing a pizzeria professionally. If you are an aspiring amateur or an owner/operator in the first 2 years of operation, this series will help you to prepare and avoid the pitfalls that could derail your success. In this course you will study the fundamentals of Menu Planning, Equipment Selection, Restaurant Design, Ingredient Selection, Dough Formulas and Management, Public Relations and Marketing, Restaurant Math Principles, Exploring Industry Trends, and the Essentials of Hand-Crafted Neapolitan and New York Style Pizza. The class will consist of both theory and hands-on guide practice.

Meet The Instructors

Pizza university instructor Giulio Adriani profile image

Giulio Adriani

The Naples native Giulio Adriani is redefining Neapolitan Pizza in America. Giulio’s 30 years of experience began in his grandmother’s kitchen in Rome, though he later traveled to Naples to learn from master pizzaioli Gaetano Fazio and Antonio Starita. Certified as an authentic Neapolitan Pizza Master by the Associazione Pizzaioli Napoletani, Giulio has owned and operated restaurants all over the world; in Italy, New York, Atlanta and most recently in Washington, DC. A stickler for authenticity, he focuses on developing the perfect crust and insists that the mozzarella be handmade at each of his restaurants. Widely considered one of the world’s leading pizza experts, Giulio travels across Europe, Asia, and Latin America to instruct aspiring pizzaioli and teach proper Neapolitan techniques.

Pizza university instructor John Arena

John Arena

Chef John Arena is a Brooklyn-born pizza maker with over 5 decades of experience. As the creator of America’s first 3 credit university-level course for aspiring pizza entrepreneurs, he has traveled extensively around the world as a student, guest lecturer, and consultant to the pizza industry. John has introduced thousands of pizza makers of all experience levels to the joy of making pizzas. His students have gone on to open successful pizzerias across the US and around the world. His top pupils have even been awarded dozens of medals in pizza competitions, including 3 world championship medals at the International Pizza Expo.

scott wiener instructor profile image

Scott Wiener

Calling Scott Wiener a professional pizza enthusiast would be a massive understatement. Since founding Scott’s Pizza Tours in 2008, he’s educated thousands of pizza lovers and professionals about NYC’s top pizzerias. He judges pizza culinary competitions, writes an award winning column for Pizza Today Magazine, and hosts Thrillist’s web series Really Dough (available on YouTube). Scott is the founder of Slice Out Hunger, a hunger relief nonprofit that supports hunger relief and prevention through pizza-related events and campaigns.

(Photo by: Michael Desmond/Hulu)

Although his pizza making is usually restricted to his popular online classes, he recently celebrated a victory on an episode of Hulu’s pizza competition show “Best In Dough.” As if that wasn’t enough pizza content for one human, he also holds the Guinness World Record for largest collection of pizza boxes with which he shares an apartment in Brooklyn, New York.

Class Curriculum

8:30AM-9:00AM – Arrival at Pizza University & Culinary Arts Center – Light Breakfast
9:00AM-9:30AM – Introduction by Pizza University Founder and CEO Francesco Marra
9:30AM-10:00AM – Instructor Intro and Course Overview
10:00AM-10:30AM – Pizza Dough Science & Mathematics
10:30AM-12:00PM – Neapolitan Dough Making (Direct & Biga)
12:00PM-12:30PM – Lunch Break
12:30PM-2:00PM – American Dough Making
2:00PM-2:45PM – Pizza Business Basics
2:45PM-3:30PM – Understanding Equipment
3:30PM-4:00PM – Scaling and Rolling Neapolitan Dough                                      4:00PM-4:30PM – Q&A

8:30AM-9:30AM – Meet at Marra Forni Elkridge Facility – Marra Forni Factory Tour
9:30AM-10:00AM – Drive Back to Pizza University & Culinary Arts Center
10:30AM-11:15AM – Neapolitan Oven Technique
11:15AM-12:00PM – Tomato Cutting
12:00PM-12:15PM – Break
12:15PM-1:45PM – Neapolitan Pizza/Lunch
2:00PM-2:30PM – Partner’s Presentation
2:30PM-4:00PM – Sauce Production
4:00PM-4:30PM – Q&A

8:30AM-9:00AM – Arrival at Pizza University & Culinary Arts Center – Light Breakfast
9:00AM-9:30AM – Final Day Goals Discussion
9:30AM-10:00AM – Cheese Selection
10:00AM-10:45AM – HISTORY: from Naples to America
11:00AM-11:30AM – Partner Presentation
11:30AM-3:00PM – American Pizza Making/Lunch
3:00PM-3:30PM – Final Exam
3:30PM-4:30PM – Certificate Presentation, Photos, Interviews

You Will Receive

Pizza University Certificate

Chef Jacket and Apron

Networking Opportunities

Post-Class Support

Testimonials From Our Students

Play Video

Laura Hayes

“I’ve met a lot of talented people who will go on to do great things.”

Play Video

Omar Saleh

“Everyone in my class came with a passion for pizza and is leaving with an even greater passion!”

Previous Students In Action

Frequently Asked Questions

Pizza University & Culinary Arts is located at 10310-A Southard Drive, Beltsville, MD 20705.

Baltimore/Washington International Airport (BWI)

Distance from Pizza University & Culinary Arts Center: 22 Miles

Ronald Reagan National Airport (DCA)

Distance from Pizza University & Culinary Arts Center: 30 Miles

Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD)

Distance from Pizza University & Culinary Arts Center: 40 Miles

Please check our Terms & Conditions, including our cancelation and refund policy.

We will provide our students with a chef jacket, an apron, a binder with course-related material, and blank sheets of paper and a pen to take notes.

Feel free to wear something comfortable. Closed-toe shoes are recommended.

Please email info@pizzauniversity.org to receive hotel information.

Where Are We Located?

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Ticket Type: Ticket Qty: Per Ticket Price:
Adult Ticket
18 Left:
Quantity: Total
Lowell Taylor
Lowell Taylor
Jennifer Mannelli
Jennifer Mannelli
Emily Lucio
Emily Lucio
This was so much fun. Highly recommend for a group
Mark Brown
Mark Brown
I just finished Pizza University's 3-Day Intensive class “Bridging the World of Pizza from Italy to New York” taught by Maestro Leo Spizzirri, and it was truly something! The facility itself is top-notch, featuring a variety of high-end pizza ovens from Marra Forni, excellent kitchen space, an excellent support staff and all the pizza making materials you could ask for. Most of the students in my class were professional chefs and restaurant owners, but there were also a number of home cooks looking to up their pizza game. We also had a series of presentations and samplings from purveyors of pizza ingredients including manufacturers and importers of flours, tomato products, cheeses, and vinegars. It was something to sample half a dozen mozzarellas, several different ricottas, and a taste flight of more than a dozen Italian imported vinegars! But for me the real highlight was Master Pizzaiolo Chef Leo himself. He says if you were to cut him he'd bleed tomato sauce and mozzarella, and I believe it. He has a huge wealth of experience making pizza, and he really is great at explaining it -- he really wants you as his student to understand the fine details of the art of pizza making. We spent much of the three days just learning about how different flours, dough recipes and ingredients, oven temperatures, and dough mixing and handling techniques all come together to form a unique finished product. This course was pretty intense, but I'd highly recommend it to anyone who is seriously interested in pizza!
Cayton Flippen
Cayton Flippen
Great experience and learned so much from Chef Leo to open the pizza shop the best way I know how! The learning of dough has been great!
David Elo
David Elo
Great class, had tons of fun learning and refining my skills.
Lexington Vazquez
Lexington Vazquez
So much in 3days but the way things are planned it's not overwhelming. Good team to help you and super informative for anyone who wants to learn about pizza or be in the business. Staff is also amazing super helpful, very informative. Looking to be back soon!
Jamie Twing
Jamie Twing
What an incredible experience!!!! We just got back from such a fun and educational day battling coworkers during Pizza Wars! Great to see how far our skills improved over time. Chef Dave and the team were absolutely incredible. My entire team was sooo thankful and appreciative for the opportunity! Would love to visit again! Absolutely recommend!
ray N
ray N
Great experience with a knowledgeable chef and staff at Marra Forni.
Grace Gilbertson
Grace Gilbertson
What a fabulous educational experience! All 3 days were packed with information any pizza maker can use to start their journey or hone their existing crust.