Drawing: DeFazio University pizza or pasta class

DeFazio's veggie pizza TOP final 2014

One of DeFazio's pizzas from this year's TOP final, the shop's second overall tournament win.

Drawing's closed! Winner's been emailed!

Two-time Tournament of Pizza champ DeFazio's is bringing back its DeFazio University pizza and pasta classes in 2015. Rocco DeFazio and his family started teaching the classes this year, and they've become pretty popular.

DeFazio University Shirt.jpgIf you've wanted to give them a try, this could be your chance. AOA is giving away a pizza or pasta class for four at DeFazio University. You and three friends can join one of DeFazio's upcoming pizza classes on February 8 or 22, or their pasta class on March 1.

Here's how to enter the drawing:

DeFazio's is a two time winner of the AOA Tournament of Pizza trophy. If you could give someone/something in the Capital Region a trophy, to whom/what would you give it and why?

Maybe it's a favorite food, or place to go, maybe it's a person or organization that should be recognized for doing good work or just somehow being worthy of praise. Tell us who you think should get a trophy and why and you'll be entered to win.

We'll draw one winner at random.

DeFazio's pizza and pasta making classes are being offered on Sunday afternoons from 1-4 pm for $60 per person. You can bring your own bottle of wine to enjoy while you're cooking, and everyone who takes a class leaves with a DeFazio's pizza or pasta kit so they can get started making their own pies and pasta dishes at home.

Important: All comments must be submitted by 5 pm on Friday, December 12, 2014 to be entered in the drawing. You must answer the question to be part of the drawing. (Normal commenting guidelines apply.) One entry per person, please. You must enter a valid email address (that you check regularly) with your comment. The winner will be notified via email by 5 pm on Monday, December 15 and must respond by 5 pm on December 16.


I'd give trophies to people who actually clear their sidewalks of snow.

If I could give anything/anyone in the capital region a trophy, I would give it to the Albany loyalists. Those individuals who truly believe that this a great and worthwhile city in which to live, work, and play. The people who get excited about new exhibits at the State Museum, new restaurants on Lark, ice skating in the Plaza, summer festivals . . . and encourage those living in and out of the area to feel the same way!

My trophy goes to Capital Roots (formerly Capital District Community Gardens) for its amazing vision in developing and expanding its mission to bring healthy, fresh produce to underserved people, as well as education about eating, growing, cooking, shopping for healthy food.

Dedicated Capital Region neighbors who get up early to shovel show from their sidewalks before they leave for work. As a walking commuter, I'm always impressed to see cleared sidewalks in the morning!

If speaking seriously, I'd definitely give a trophy to Capital District Community Gardens for all the amazing work they do. They've managed to accomplish so many different goals.

Less seriously, to the Egg, for still standing. Albany is still Eggcellent.

I'd love to give Vic Christopher and Heather LeVine a trophy or gold medal for so positively impacting Troy. Their enthusiasm and respectful attention to previously neglected historic buildings is inspirational.

If you could give someone/something in the Capital Region a trophy, to whom/what would you give it:

Any person who is willing to endure local bureaucratic policies to open and run a small business in this town.

and why:
It takes the patience of a saint to do so.

I would donate to the Regional Food Bank because it just isn't right or good or acceptable that 1 in 7 people in NY struggle with hunger.

All Over Albany, of course! This is the first place I go for news around the area. It's fresh, relevant and brings together people in a way the traditional media can't. (Do I win the prize now???)

Seriously, you all are great. Thank you for everything!

I'd give my trophy to Rocco Defazio for always making us feel welcome and opening up the import shop next door for when we were there with a large dining aprty!

Honest Weight Food Coop! Coming from a small city without a coop, I can tell you we are so lucky to have a place to so well curates the selection of amazing local food producers. I take everyone who visits there!

My trophy goes to the Troy BID for sure. I've lived in Troy for 8 years now and the transformation has been incredible, due in no small part to their efforts!

I would give a trophy to Steve Caporizzo. I love watching the Pet Connection every night and its apparent how much he cares about the animals and helping them find a loving home.

I would give it to All Over Albany, for making our region seem so much more interesting that it probably is in reality.

Second prize to Nelson Rockefeller and Robert Moses, for destroying in 5 years a city that took 400 years to build.

My trophy goes to co-owners of the Confectionary in Troy for their significant impact on Troy's night life.

Matt Baumgartner, for making the most of those poker winnings! I would have blown it on jet skis and gold chains!

Hey, I'd probably give it to Stacks on Lark, for purveying delicious "drug".

I would give an award to people who embrace the seasons and make the most of everything we have here.

I would give a trophy to the free ice skating rink in Empire State Plaza. I think it's a wonderful winter tradition for the community that everyone can enjoy. And it (at least for me) really helps spread the holiday spirit!

I know someone else already mentioned AOA, but you guys really are that "smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region."


Belly Cider donuts they are too good, I can"t eat just one.

I would give it to geography. The capital region is A+ for quick trips to amazing cities, towns, and mountains. And we get 4 beautiful seasons (I'm saying that now at the beginning of winter when it looks gorgeous out...before everything turns to grey slush). Perfect location!

Not to pile on with the brown nosing, but I'd bestow All Over Albany with the title of Best Embassador of Capital Region Positivity.

Sometimes we need a reminder that we're surrounded by interesting people, places, events, and ideas. Typically my reminder comes from AOA.

I would give my trophy to the local arms of the Nature Conservancy -- their stewardship of many local natural spots is appreciated.

My writing group for being supportive and tough when I need it.

My trophy would go to the guy that clears my driveway and sidewalk at night. I don't know who you are, or how much of my meager rent money you get, but you are a true angel of the night. I sleep better knowing that you are hard at work making sure that my sidewalk and driveway will be snow free when I wake up. Thank you driveway cleaner.

I'd give a trophy to Ken Screven for best manufactured outrage.

My award goes to all the local law enforcement agencies that do such a great job keeping our City and the surrounding counties safe day-in, day-out. The police are being bashed in media lately, and I believe that our local departments do a great job.

I'd give a trophy to all the small business owners in Albany. I live in one of the neighborhoods flooded with big box stores, and my trips to downtown Troy, Albany and Saratoga are so refreshing!

McGeary's, for being the home of the Bills Backers. That place gets crazy on game day, but they embrace it, and make us poor Bills fans feel like we have a home.

the people who run Things of My Very Own in Schenectady deserve a trophy and lots of donations. They are one very busy organization working late into the night to help families in crisis

I would give it to my sister who has always wanted to make a good homemade pizza. Has tried many times but always feels defeated. This would really boost her morale and give her more tips and focus. She would love lit.

To all the entrepreneurs taking risks in Albany's Warehouse District.

To elementary school music teachers! I admire their ability to take an enthusiastic, if not necessarily talented, group of children and produce something pleasant sounding.

I would give a trophy to the hard working staff at the main branch of the Albany Public Library! I stop there on a nearly daily basis and they're always pleasant even when dealing with some pretty difficult people!

I would give trophies to legislative staffers who put up with ridiculous hours, sexual harassment, and rude lobbyists for a huge chunk of the year.

I am going to second the nomination of the local geography. The region has an amazing abundance of outdoors environments.

nine pin cider for the best cider

Today it would have to be my (brand new) Fiancé. We both love the capital region, and he managed to work all of our favorite stops into a proposal scavenger hunt. Who wouldn't say yes to someone who wrote me my own personal Albany iSpy game?

I would honor the Albany based US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants for their work.

I'd give a trophy to Andy & Sons Imports for making some damn good sandwiches.

If I could give anyone a trophy it would have to go to my wife for "making" me move to the Capital Region 30 years ago (and for putting up with me for even longer)

I'd give a trophy to the many people in the Capital Region who are dedicated to not only keeping this area interesting, but who are dedicated to keeping it thriving. Greg & Mary of AOA would definitely get one!

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