Welcome to Point Of View 005 by DR DENIM. The point of this editorial is to give space to the thoughts and views of our community. To open up new conversations, invite new perspectives and build relationships with friends, old and new. The most recent guest to POV is Alen aka Big Grizz. Grizz lives in Sydney’s Eastern suburbs with his dog Bernie, he makes pizza with his family for a living, and he generally just has a good vibe and outlook on life. We spent an afternoon discussing it over a couple of pizzas and non-alcoholic beers at his place. Warning, this one might make you hungry...
D: Who are you?
A: Hey I’m Alen Nikolovski some know me as Big Grizz or just Grizz. I’m 34 and a half years old, a Pisces and have the best dog in the world called Bernie.
D: What do you do?
A: I make pizza (I’m not a chef tho). It’s the best! I work in my family business, we have a restaurant that we’ve had for 16 years and also a Woodfired pizza food truck. Working side by side with your family is super rewarding, it’s made our relationship really great. We are all super close, which is nice as it’s only us here, the rest of our family lives in Macedonia other than my uncle who lives in NZ with his fam.
D: Where do you live?
A: I live in Rose Bay with my little Dog Bernie. We have a 2-bedroom apartment that’s kind of quirky, the bathroom has this 70’s Miami porn chic vibe to it and the kitchen has this cool mafioso Italian touch to it, it’s all red with a black and white checkered floor, I love my apartment, it just works!
D: Do your values inform your relationship to clothing?
A: I think so... my most important value is to be happy, and when I dress nice, I feel happy! I was going to try and come up with a profound answer to this, but I couldn’t because as I said, I like to dress nice because it makes me happy and sets my mood for the day, it’s pretty simple.
D: How do you find your life shapes your expression through clothing?
A: This is a bloody good question btw. The older I get the better I’m dressing I think, I don’t know if that’s because I’ve been around longer and have made and seen some awful fashion choices, so I try to avoid them or it’s because I’m caring more for my appearance. I’m pretty damn happy now and my life is going well so I like to dress nicer. I’ve always kind of worn what I like, I’m lucky I can get away with some more risqué things due to my colourful appearance. I also draw a lot of influence from my friends and other interesting and well-dressed people in the world, I don’t do it as well as most of them but I like what I wear and occasionally get told I look nice, that part helps haha
D: What are you working towards now?
A: Currently focusing a lot on the food truck and big events. We have done a few festivals and they are really fun. The vibe is great, heaps of people and loud music, plus it’s super busy which I love. The food truck business is a whole other world, you meet some interesting cats that have been doing it for ages but everyone is so nice and really helpful and full of advice, I love it, it’s kind of like a well-organised circus of interesting characters that make delicious food. Plus our truck looks great, and people are always blown away that we have a Woodfired oven on there.
D: How important is creativity in your routine?
A: I think it’s really important. I love routine, I never used to because I thought it was lame, but now I can’t live without it. I’m super lucky that all my friends are creative, either at work or with their hobbies which inspires me to be even more creative. I always ask for advice from them and they always help with little projects whether it is with photos, festivals, food ideas or just life stuff. I’m so fortunate I have amazing friends in my life and I love them all very much.
D: What is your Dr Denim go-to?
A: The Omar jeans!!! I love this fit I have 2 pairs, one in Worn Black and one in pebble super light retro. They are the perfect fit, can either wear them casually with a t-shirt or singlet or jazz it up with a nice shirt and some dress shoes, they rule.
D: What are you listening to?
A: A bit of everything tbh. On rotation atm is Sonic Youth, Fugazi, Gang of Four, The strokes, Black Lips, Soulwax ( my fave) Sebastian Tellier and lots more. I listen to music all day, always something in the background.
D: What are you cooking/eating?
A: Umm well I cook for a living so on my days off I try and eat out at places. I love pasta though, if I do cook it’s always some sort of pasta dish. I could eat pasta all day, if I got stuck on an island and they said bring 3 things I would bring garlic, pasta, and olive oil. But I love going out and eating pasta too, fave spots are Albertos Lounge, Paski, 10 William Street, and continental deli to name a few. I also love going out for pizza even though I make it, Bella Brutta and Dimitris are a must. Sydney's food scene is popping off these days, so many good restaurants are opening all the time, it’s great.
PASTA ALLA GRIZZ (it’s just a marinara sauce pasta lol)
⁃ Anchovies (optional but you really should)
⁃ Capers (optional)
⁃ Cherry tomatoes or any type you like
⁃ Lemon zest
⁃ Olive oil
⁃ Spaghetti (or any long pasta because the sauce sticks to it better)
Put olive oil in a pan and let it heat up for a min, chuck the garlic in and let it cook on low heat, so you don’t burn it. Put a few anchovies in (these are for flavour as they will break down when cooking) and slowly simmer and squash the anchovies. Add your tomatoes and on low heat simmer for a little while till the tomatoes break down and get saucy.
Put your pasta on the boil (you’ll need the pasta water which is full of starch to put in your sauce to thicken it up, little trick). Put capers in (optional) and add some pasta water to lengthen the sauce and make it thicker. When the pasta is ready (Al dente always) drain it but keep some of the water to finish off your sauce. Add some more pasta water to the sauce and when it’s nice and consistent and thick and looks like it’s ready add some Parmesan so it dissolves and makes it creamy and also some lemon zest (gives the sauce a nice oomph and makes it delicious and tangy, and a kiss of lemon juice too not too much though).
Add your cooked pasta to the sauce and give it a nice mix so it looks good and is consistently spread out and serve, add some Parmesan when serving on a plate and thank me later. Oh, and add salt as you’re cooking obvs, you should always be tasting it as you’re going.
Shot by @andreaveltom on Gadigal land. We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land, and pay our respects to elders past, present and emerging.