(WKOW) -- At Pizza Brutta on Madison's near west side, Derek Lee begins his day with fresh Wisconsin mozzarella curd.
"This is what we use on all our Caprese salads, we also make a little Caprese sandwich out of it," owner Derek Lee said.
He also uses this hand-pulled fresh mozzarella on his Neapolitan-style pizza. Lee believes the freshness of the cheese makes a definite impact on the taste of the pizza and other menu items.
"When you make it fresh…we literally made it a half an hour ago and its going to go on plates here in a few minutes, uh it's just very different, I can't describe just how much the dairy note in it is just so much more powerful," Lee said. "It's very milky, creamy."
It's a philosophy that Lee practices throughout his business; make it fresh, and keep it local and sustainable.
"We try to do what they do in Naples, the miller is right in town, the cheese is made just right out of town, the tomatoes are right out of Mount Vesuvius," Lee said. "So we try to employ the same principles by using local ingredients."
Although Lee believes in an export agricultural system, he also believes in supporting regional agriculture that puts people in touch with locally produced food.
"That's why we support local agriculture and fresh ingredients. Especially in this great state where we have such an abundance of dairy products, produce, grains, meats. We're really lucky that we have so much local ingredients and it's why I came to this state!"
To lower the restaurant's carbon footprint Lee buys wind energy to power the restaurant and uses sustainable oak wood to heat the oven where he cooks the pizzas. For more information log onto their website pizzabrutta.com.