The Rise of Specialty Pizza

Of all the cooking tricks we love, there is nothing like the sight of a Pizzaiolo tossing a ring of unmade pizza dough high in the air with all the agility of a circus juggler. The pizza maker then adds some tomato sauce, cheese and pepperoni or sausage and place it in the oven.  Today, that Pizzaiolo is as much a gourmet chef as he is a simple pie maker, catering to more educated and adventurous customers.

The world of pizza has changed. Already among the top foods we eat regularly, pizza has expanded its audience by becoming gourmet and healthy. The emphasis is on top quality ingredients and innovation – urged on by a move into more upscale serving environments.

The trend is spurred on by the burgeoning number of food television shows, celebrity chefs, as well as the desire to cater to an elite group of adventurous diners, health-conscious eaters and those looking to expand their pizza experience. (more…)

The Undeniable Influence of iPhones on the Restaurant Business

A few weeks ago yours, mine and just about everybody’s favorite accessory/necessity celebrated a big birthday: the iPhone turned 10.

There’s no arguing that the iPhone has transformed our lives. Ten years after the first iPhone entered the market surrounded by unprecedented hype, Apple’s seemingly untouchable innovation just keeps steamrolling past barriers. (more…)

Grilled Pizza is Hot!

It’s a hot debate whether grilled pizza began in Memphis or Rhode Island. Some say, owners Johanne Killeen and George Germon served the first at Al Forno restaurant in Providence, RI. Others swear it was Coletta’s in Memphis.

Whether Northern roots or Southern, what is true is that the flavor and smokiness from grilling pizza on real charcoal cannot be beat. If you then add pepperoni on the pizza, you will double the smoky flavor of both the pizza and the pepperoni. Fire roasted bacon will also add tremendous flavor and a bacon-goodness smell to your restaurant. (more…)

All Natural and Organic Options Emerging for Pizzerias

When people picture the perfect pizza, they might imagine a deep-dish Chicago slice covered in various meats, a thin crust Margherita slice straight out of Italy, or a massive folded-over slice of Brooklyn pie. Regardless of personal preference over the ideal pizza, most consumers can agree that they’d appreciate their slice to contain quality ingredients. Which for today’s pizza lovers means natural or organic ingredients.

European consumers have always associated fresh and natural with quality; Americans are slowly learning as demand for organic products has skyrocketed in recent years. Organic food sales reached $47 billion in 2016, an increase of 8.4 percent over the previous year. Although organic food sales account for about five percent of the total U.S. food sales, the growth is very different from the stagnant 0.6 percent growth rate for the overall food market.  Recent studies indicate the market for organic foods will rise to $320 billion by 2025. (more…)

Loyalty Programs: Creating and Maintaining Long-term Customers

Pizzerias are neighborhood fixtures, serving the community as a friendly hotspot to dine in or to order take out. People tend to select a favorite pizza place and stick to it for a variety of reasons: preferred pizzas and toppings, convenient location, speedy delivery, the atmosphere of the restaurant itself, or for the excellent loyalty program.

Every pizzeria strives to have loyal customers as they are the building blocks of a sustainable, profitable business. Capturing loyalty is the initial feat of making programs lucrative, but maintaining that loyalty can be rather difficult. (more…)