In 2009, after a decade of experimenting with bread-baking, Pizzeria Caldera owner Chris Hansen began experimenting with pizza-making. “When people ask me how I learned how to make pizza, I half-jokingly say, ‘From the Internet.’” After a year of experimenting with dough, sauce and topping combinations, Hansen knew he had a recipe that could fill a niche in Jackson Hole that was big enough to haul a pizza oven through.
Pizzeria Caldera opened in December of 2011 after two years of research and searching – soul and location. The rest is history in the making.
We describe our pizza as thin-crust, Napolitana-style pizza, and we bake it in a gas-fired, stone-hearth Woodstone brand oven — one of the best oven manufacturers in the US.
Do you take reservations?
Yes, for parties of 6 or more. Our dining room is small, so if you have a larger group, please plan ahead and try to be as flexible as you can with your timing. Large groups are more easily seated earlier or later in the evening. And sorry, no reservations on the deck in summer. You can call us at 307-201-1472 or book your reservation or use the Open Table widget on our home page.
What size are your pizzas?
Our pizza is best experienced in the 12” size of a traditional Napolitana pie. The crust is crispy on the bottom, chewy on the inside and made flavorful by a long, cold proof. That said, we recognized early on that downtown Jackson was missing a good by-the-slice pizzeria. Based on the size of our restaurant, kitchen and oven, we’ve had to make certain business decisions around 18” pizzas.
We sell slices out of 18” pizzas from 11am through 6pm. But at night we can get very busy and our oven is often full with 12” pizzas. Putting an 18” pie in the oven at night slows down production and affects all our customers. So we only make enough 18” dough balls for our slices during the day and stop selling slices at the end of happy hour, at 6pm.
Will you sell me an 18” pizza?
No. And yes.
As stated above, we sell our 18″ pies by the slice and we only make enough dough for what we expect to sell by the slice each day. If you’d like to order 18″ pies, we do that for what we consider our catering orders. There is a minimum of 6 pies per order and we need to know at least 24 hours in advance so we can make enough dough for the order and anything else that might be requested, such as salads, soups or appetizers. When we’re not slammed, we can even deliver these orders!
Will you sell me some dough balls?
Yes. We’ll sell you either a 12” or 18” dough ball. But if you want quantity, please order ahead. The dough we make today won’t be ready until tomorrow. But we really recommend 12” dough balls for home use because they’re easier to work with and will better fit in your home oven.
How long does it take to make dough?
Not only is our dough the most important aspect of our pizza, and not only is our dough what makes our pizza so good, but like all good things, it takes time. Making a batch of dough only takes about an hour. But the critical aspect to our dough is that it needs to “proof” overnight. For this reason, we need to make sure we get it right every time. And if for some reason we don’t, we need to make new dough right away. There is no making of a “quick batch” of dough if we run out, so what we call “dough management,” or planning ahead for the right amount of dough every day, is a critical part of prep every day at Caldera.