Chains Jumping Into Fast Casual Pizza
Once the fast-casual giant Chipotle bought into the Pizza Locale fast casual pizza concept many foodies took notice, then came Wetzel Pretzel’s with Blaze and Sbarro’s with it’s new concept called Cuchinova and the floodgates for many franchise holding groups were open. They began looking for new concepts and started creating new concepts such as Revolve with namesake revolving brick ovens from The New York Brick Oven Company The revoving brick ovens are pumping out brick oven pizza faster than they can be assembled. What is the attraction? Why is fast casual pizza exploding across the US? What defines the category and who are the real players behind it?
Well, the pizza segment has always had its share of the market with giants such as Pizza Hut and Domino’s. Yes, they are till dominating, but what is the attraction to fast casual pizza concepts and the Chaind jumpng into fast casual pizza ? Fast casual is cool! its hot , fast, and fresh and usually served in a cool trendy atmosphere at a reasonable cost. Factor in the entertainment value of watching your pizza prepared and cooked in under 5 minutes and you get the picture.Another very important part of the equation is lunch. What does that mean you may wonder since pizza was always available for lunch in most sit-down restaurants with table service or slice shops dominated by players such as Sbarro Pizza in a mall near you. Speed is the answer, most busy towns and commercial areas with a working clientele could not wait for a conventional pizza place to take an order, bake a pie and then serve it in the limited lunch break customer’s had. Once you factor in getting to a location you can see how pizza, especially gourmet pizza did not fit the equation.
The Revolving Brick Oven
Then came the brick oven revolution with pies under 3 minutes and then the revolving brick oven revolution which made it possible to be even faster but more importantly to able to make a consistently perfect pizza without a highly skilled workforce. This high-speed production combined with a low food cost was the ticket to a successful model along the lines of a Chipotle or Panera bread.
Now take this model and add a reduced labor cost with a reduced labor force. Since table service is not needed and fewer pizza men with the skill to operate the revolving brick oven your set to crack the fast casual pizza code.
Another big factor behind the scene has been the training has been Pizza School of New York helping set up franchises, conversions, new concepts, brew pubs, pizza trucks and traditional mom and pop pizza places all over the United States and the world with tremendous results.
Whatever your part in this brave new world of fast casual pizza is, you are in for a big treat. From new contenders with dreams of bringing their concepts to the foreground. To the small town mainstay looking to mix it up a bit there is plenty of room for everyone and the biggest winner will be the consumers with the ever widening choices being offered and a super healthy dose of competition to keep everyone on their toes and the pizza fresh.