The story of the wood fire Pizza Oven.

So most of you know me as JC, the French Chef in Grand Lake. I have been here in and out since 1991. As most of you know, all my love is in the food and the industry. The restaurant is my entire life!

I own a house in Ventimiglia Liguria, not far from the French border. Most my family is from there and Perugia Umbria. I was raised on Italian food and tradition. Several years ago I was lucky to meet Augosto, the Chef owner of Augusto Vesuvio Via Trossarelli 14 in Ventimiglia! He makes four hundred Pizzas a day–his world, his passion is Pizza. Many morning in my house, when I am there with Augusto after a strong expresso, I go the market and do the shopping for the restaurant. The market is incredible for a Chef, just to see the fresh seafood and vegetable Italy has to offer! It’s a special trip for me just to go there!

So one day I thought, I have to do the same Pizza in Grand Lake at Stillwater Grill.

It took Jim and me, Jim is my business partner, two years to develop the idea and the concept–The blue print! Dealing with local and state authorities! The dream of the Pizza was coming real in January 2017. Big Kevin our general contractor made the dream come through! With patience dedication, days of doing and redoing some of the details, finally in late May the wood fire oven was ready! But turning the oven on doesn’t make a great Pizza, with my Sous Chefs we started to make Pizzas. The first day the Pizzas were free. Just to train ourselves! We needed help.

The first smoke was coming out of the oven, Augusto was on Skype day after day after day, doing that Special Dough, and the secret he gave me was his secret!

After all I always say there are no secrets in the kitchen. I always give my recipes away, but what differs a lot is the technical aspect! So after many days of trying we finally got the fire at the right temperature and the dough to be as soft as we wanted, since we do not use a roller and the dough is spread by hand!

Thank you Augusto, you should be proud to know that we do now share some customers and that your special recipe for Pizza is in Grand Lake.

We had some customers who came back from your place and loved our Pizza!

We live in a small world.

Grazi Mille,


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