ABOVE: Shadrach's Fiery Furnace's Sweet Stinger pizza (left) and Queen Margarita pizza (right). Mount Dora Buzz photo
After two long years and a lot of red tape, wood-fired pizza is now being served in Mount Dora. The bubbly and slightly charred pies are the trademark of Shadrach’s Fiery Furnace, a family-owned mobile pizza company that now has brick and mortar digs in the heart of downtown Mount Dora. The alfresco dining option serves up about a dozen different Neapolitan-style pizzas, salads, sandwiches and other fare, plus beer and wine. In addition to the outdoor bar and tables, diners can opt to eat at the tables inside Mount Dora Marketplace.
Also known as pizza Napoletana, Shadrach’s style of thin-crust pie originates from Naples, Italy and is known for its fresh and simple ingredients. The airy dough creates pillowy edges and once baked in the wood-fired oven, creates a bubbly, charred crust. Neapolitan pies are generally about 12 inches, an ample size to share between two people with average appetites.
The offerings range from traditional pies like pepperoni, classic cheese and a wood-roasted veggie pizza to more contemporary varieties like barbecue chicken, Hawaiian and four cheese pesto. Shadrach’s also offers a gluten-free cauliflower crust and vegan cheese options.
On a recent visit, Mount Dora Buzz started with the fresh Shishito pepper appetizer that had just the right amount of crunch and heat. That was followed by the flavorful baked herbed goat cheese, which was surrounded by marinara sauce and then baked in the pizza oven to melted perfection. To top it off, it’s served with garlic bread toast points that are perfect for mopping up the sauce and the cheese or just eating alone.
Then we moved on to the main event: pizza! The Queen Margarita is loaded with fresh mozzarella cheese and a four-cheese blend, plus plenty of fresh roma tomatoes and basil. We also tried the Sweet Stinger which will be an all-time favorite for anyone that loves sweet and spicy pies. It was the perfect flavor bomb of red sauce with bacon, pineapple and fresh jalapeno slices and then topped with a light drizzle of spicy honey. The two appetizers and two pies were more than enough for two of us to share, and we had enough to share with others and take home.
Shadrach’s Fiery Furnace, a family-owned business, started in 2011 as a mobile pizza kitchen and eventually traveled through the southern U.S. to back its pies at various events and venues. Mount Dorans would often seek out their mobile pizza kitchen at the corner of Wolf Branch Road and U.S. 441, as well as events at Renningers Twin Markets. The family endeavor is headed by Gary Carney and his three enterprising and friendly adult kids Jack, Sarah and Nate. The Carneys have long roots in the area with Sara and Jack both being Mount Dora High School alumni.
Shadrach’s Fiery Furnace is located at 334 N. Donnelly Street between Fourth and Third Avenues. The company’s mobile pizza kitchens are available for catering and special events.
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It’s déjà vu only better. Over the years, many area residents have fond memories of Yada Yada Pottery, a friendly creative venue that has always exuded a warm and welcoming vibe.
Well, that positive juju is back and seemingly better than ever. Last month the pottery studio and artisan gift shop moved from its second-floor space on Donnelly Street to a larger storefront on the north side of 5th Avenue downtown. The new light and airy location provides more space for a variety of popular classes, plus a boutique area with local artists’ creations and an area for fun pottery painting sessions. Classes are taught by the creative owner, Juliet Davis, a Renaissance woman who also made all of the impressive furnishings at the new location.
Yada Yada Pottery launched in 1999 and over the years transitioned from various locations in Mount Dora and Eustis until landing in its current bright space. Davis, an established potter, offers wheel and handbuilding ceramic classes for students at every level. To gain independent access to the open studio hours, students can take one of the six-week courses available to get familiar with the studio, or participate in a one-time orientation class. To mix things up, Yada Yada Pottery also offers fun macrame classes that start with basic knots and then move on to elaborate projects.
Pottery wheel classes are available for ages 14 and up, however handbuilding classes and pottery painting sessions are available for younger ages. During those sessions, customers pick the piece they would like to decorate and paint it with a variety of available glazes . Pottery painting is available for special parties and group events.
Yada Yada Pottery’s new location is 133 W. 5th Avenue in downtown Mount Dora.
What’s old is about to be brand-new again in historic Mount Dora. After years of romantic horse-drawn carriage rides rolling through downtown, the popular tours came to an end a few years ago. Now a couple of local entrepreneurs are eager to return the nostalgic rides to the area area, but this time with an updated twist. Read more