Wednesday, 30 January 2008

The Best Pizza in Chicago

Chicago City Search carried out an online poll among its subscribers to find the best Pizzeria in the City.

Here are the results

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Where's your Domino's Pizza? Track it Online

domino's pizza tracker

In the next installment of our occasional series about Pizza Gadgets we bring you this story from USA Today.

"After ordering pizza for the gang on Super Bowl Sunday, many folks will be able to go online and track the progress of their pies.

Domino's, the pizza-delivery kingpin, on 30th January 08 unveiled a technology, Pizza Tracker, that lets customers literally track their pizza from the moment they place the order until it leaves the store en route to them. What's more, Domino's vows that its online tracking system — for phone or online orders — is accurate to within 40 seconds.

"We're filling that black box of uncertainty — 'Has my pizza been forgotten?' — with information and entertainment," says Chris McGlothlin, technology chief at Domino's.

The system goes up Wednesday at 3,400 Domino's outlets and will be in all stores by June 30, he says. It even gives folks the first names of the workers who take their phone order and deliver their pizza — and asks customers to rate them.

Any customer comments about inappropriate behavior by order takers or delivery staff will be investigated, spokesman Tim McIntyre says.

In a nation ever eager to track delivery of everything from FedEx padomino's delivery driverckages to Amazon.com orders, it's now come down to tonight's pizza. The move by Domino's is aimed at its youthful target: consumers under age 30 who spend gobs of time online.

Sadly, there are probably a bunch of people who will be enamored of this, says Christopher Muller, director of the Center for Multi-Unit Restaurant Management at University of Central Florida. "I guess they'll sell a ton of pizzas to people with no social life who are sitting in front of computers."

But not everyone's so sure.

"It's technology in search of a problem," says Brian Kardon, chief strategy officer at Forrester Research, a technology researcher. "I don't know how many consumers are twisting and turning over the state of their delivery pizza."

Domino's says plenty are. "It's an emotional roller coaster when you order," McGlothlin says. "Customers wonder: Did they get my order? Are they taking care of me? Will it show up?"

With the new system, after an order is placed, the customer can go to http://www.dominos.com/, click on the Pizza Tracker icon and follow the progress of the order. The site confirms that the order has been received, when the pizza is in the oven, when it's been boxed and when it's left the store.

Alas, a key part of the pizza's journey cannot be pinpointed: the drive from Domino's to your home. But Domino's can tell folks when their pizza left the store, and officials say it should arrive within nine minutes of that time.

Rival Pizza Hut is unimpressed.

http://www.pizzahut.com/ already provides an estimated time when customers will receive their orders, says Bob Kraut, vice president of marketing."
Sounds like the words of a guy who wished he'd thought of it first!


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Tuesday, 29 January 2008

California Pizza Kitchen Expands in Mexico

California Pizza Kitchen, Inc. announced opening of its second location in Mexico on Tuesday. The new restaurant, which was opened by CPK franchise partner Grupo Calpik, S.A. de C.V., is situated in the Santa Fe area of Mexico City.

The new restaurant in a 4,300 square-foot area could seat about 220 people and is located at the Santa Fe Shopping Mall, one of the major shopping centers in Mexico. The mall has more than 300 retail stores including both Liverpool and Palacio de Hierro department stores.

The company said the new CPK restaurant would be open Monday through Saturday from 1:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m. and on Sundays from 1:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. A special menu is also available for children aged 12 and under

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Pizza Delivery Companies Prepare for Superbowl Sunday

Like baseball and hot dogs, pizza is forever linked to football _ a fact not lost on some of the nation's biggest pizza chains as they gear up for Super Bowl XLII.

With the big game just around the corner, businesses like Domino's Pizza Inc., Papa John's International Inc. and Pizza Hut are bracing for a flood of orders and huge sales.

Domino's said in a statement that it expects to deliver more than 1.2 million pizzas across the country on Super Bowl Sunday _ a third more than its usual Sunday total. The Ann Arbor, Mich.-based company predicts it will deliver approximately 250,000 pizzas every quarter.

Pizza Hut said most of its locations are historically 60 percent to 70 percent busier the day of the Super Bowl compared with a typical Sunday, with 80 percent of its deliveries and takeout orders occurring before halftime. The company, which is run by Louisville, Ky.-based Yum Brands Inc., receives 2.5 million calls at its 6,200 restaurants on Super Bowl Sunday, making it the busiest day of the year.

Both Domino's and Pizza Hut said pepperoni is the favorite topping for Super Bowl Sunday, with sausage coming in second.

Papa John's, also based in Louisville, predicts selling almost 750,000 pies on game day.

All three companies are preparing for the onslaught of customers by allowing football fans to place advance orders for their pizzas online. The businesses also accept text message ordering.

Sunday's game in Arizona between the New England Patriots and New York Giants is expected to be the most-watched program of 2008, with advertisers paying $2.7 million for a 30-second commercial. Last year's Super Bowl pulled in 93.2 million viewers, slightly down from the Super Bowl's all-time record of 94.1 million viewers set in 1996.

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Testing Online Pizza Delivery in Time for Superbowl Sunday

With Super Bowl Sunday coming up ... you might be thinking pizza. Many big chains now allow you to order online. Local 12's Paula Toti put a couple of them to the test.

Imagine my excitement when one of our managers said ... hey check out all those pizza places that now offer on line ordering. I have visions of eating free pizza every day for a week. Imagine my disappointment when I struggled to get just two.

Day one ... I started with Donatos online. I wasn't able to put in an order when the store in my neighborhood was closed. It was ten in the morning ... so I tried ordering from Local 12 and was told delivery wasn't available in the downtown area, even though we get Donatos delivery all the time using the phone.

Pizza Hut also told me no delivery downtown. Surely a Local 12 employee just out of college would have on line success. "I've heard of the on line, I've used them a couple times .. Usually they make you call anyway to confirm the order. So it's never made much sense to do it like that."

Well remember I'm highly motivated ... I get free pizza. At last success .... Papa Johns was easy to order on line. I got the half and half I wanted ... but it came 25 minutes early. The delivery person told me ... the phone in orders seemed to be more time specific then on line. I was able to use an on line coupon.

"I rarely use coupons, I wish I would, I could save some money that way."

I got frustrated ordering La Rosa's on line. You have to use a phone number that you have used before and that was linked to an address where I no longer live. When I tried Local 12's phone number ... it was already being used by another employee.

Finally, I did remember the Donatos website said pardon our dust ... this system is new. I tried ordering from home and did get a pizza. It came on time ... I brought it to work .. it was delicious ... but something got messed up ... and I wasn't able to use my on line coupon. I didn't care ... I was hungry.

Bottom line ... sometimes you don't need to reinvent the wheel. Call me old fashioned ... I like picking up the phone and talking to a real pizza person.

If you're having a big party of Super Bowl Sunday ... most places tell me if you've got four or five pizzas you want delivered just call about two hours ahead. Ssome things are just too important to leave to chance.

And don't forget the tip. One former driver told us at least $3. For a big order be more generous .. especially on a busy or cold night.

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Domino's Pizza Readies Itself for Superbowl Sunday

Dominos pizza logoSuper Bowl Sunday is historically the top day for pizza sales and delivery. Cornelius Thomas, manager at Domino's Pizza on Office Park Drive in Jackson, will have all 17 of his employees working at some point Sunday. His store will make 500 to 700 pizzas that night, with probably 90 percent of them for delivery.

It's a good thing, then, he can make a large pepperoni in 40 seconds. Yes, 40 seconds. Sometimes less.

"They take eight minutes to cook, and we deliver 80 percent of our pizzas in less than 30 minutes," he said. "I give a perk. I bring a TV in and set it up in the back. So many of my team members are football fans, and you want them to enjoy it. If you've got five seconds, you can run and look at the score."

Domino's Corp. estimates it will sell 1.2 million pizzas Sunday, an increase of 42 percent over the average Sunday.

"It's always better for us if it's a tight game. Then, we'll deliver until it's over. If it's a blow out, we're done by half-time," said Glenn Mueller, president and chief executive officer of Gulfport-based RPM Pizza.

Mueller, who owns the most Domino's franchises in the country with 132 stores, said his locations are prepared either way. Most stores are preparing with additional staffing, supplies and are opening earlier.


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Friday, 25 January 2008

Local Pizzerias Gear Up for Superbowl Sunday

rolf wilkin eureka In Lafayette, local football fans gearing up for the biggest football game of the year can expect local pizza places to be ready for their biggest sales day of the year. Eureka Pizza expects to make and bake over 1,000 pizzas at each of their 12 stores on Super Bowl Sunday.

“It’s pretty cool to have 1 day out of the year that you know will be absolutely, insanely busy” said Eureka Pizza owner Rolf Wilkin. “It’s our Black Sunday,” said Wilkin, making a reference to the fabled “Black Friday” or the day after Thanksgiving that is traditionally the busiest day of the year for shopping malls and retailers. “I’ve been in the pizza business 16 years and the Super Bowl keeps getting bigger and bigger” Wilkin said.

This year should be an exciting game featuring two great teams like the New England Patriots and the New York Giants and top quarterbacks like Eli Manning and Tom Brady. Wilkin said that it doesn’t hurt that Brady dates Brazilian Super Model Gisele Bundchen, adding that the romance adds a bit of extra flair to the big game.

Just like a football tailgate party- the Super bowl is all about food. Pizza is so popular because it's cheap. It's easy. It's social. Wilkin said that the Super Bowl is such a giant event in pizza that for the past several years Eureka Pizza has dubbed it “Super Bowl Week” with week long specials all built around the Super Bowl. According to Pizza Today Magazine, the average attendance at a Super Bowl party is 17, which plays right into pizzerias’ hands since pizza is food that is easy to share.

According to Advertising Age Magazine, 68.3% of the pizza market is controlled by local pizzerias, not the national brands. Wilkin said pizza is one of the only industries where local players are the undisputed kings of the business.

Super Bowl parties are so important to Eureka Pizza that they have even set up a special web site to help people order the amount of pizza for their Super Bowl parties, www.largepizzaorders.com, that has been getting hundreds of hits daily, from all over the nation.

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Papa John's Pizza Superbowl Promotion - Text to Get 75% Off?

America, may we have your attention: Papa John’s pizza is calling for another record-setting performance during this year’s “Big Game,” and the benefit to you could be substantial.

Already the “Official Pizza of American Football Fans,” Papa John’s now wants to be the “Official Pizza of American Football Fans Who Want to Win 75 Percent Off Their Next Savory Pie” as part of the company’s “TEXTra Points 4 Pizza” promotion.

Here’s the deal: Papa John’s is offering 75 percent off the average national regular menu price of a large, 3-topping pizza if the teams competing in the Big Game combine to score 75 or more points. That means a large 3-topping pizza for only $3.99.

Is this just another hair-brained marketing idea from corporate America that has no chance of happening? On the contrary, consider the following:

75 or more points were scored in six regular season games this year (and in the 1995 championship game between San Diego and San Francisco).
February’s Big Game features the highest scoring team in professional football history.
And, a game between these two teams earlier this season netted a total score of 73 points.
Fans can register for the promotion by either texting “POINTS” to 47272 (4PAPA) or by opting in to receive text offers from Papa John’s via an online account at www.papajohns.com.

“This is Papa John’s way of asking all football fans out there to root just a little bit harder and cheer just a little bit louder for touchdowns…because when time expires, everyone in America can scream ‘WE WON!’” said Nigel Travis, Papa John’s president and chief executive officer. “We pride ourselves on concocting promotions tied to major sporting events that really offer our customers a reason to want to get engaged.”

If 75 or more points are scored in the Big Game, participants will receive a text message from Papa John’s the following day with a unique promo code. All redemptions must be made by ordering online. Complete promotion rules are available at www.papajohns.com.

In November when Papa John’s became the first pizza company to offer text message ordering on a national basis, they were answering a growing trend across America. Currently, 30 billion text messages are sent a month in this country alone, and now through promotions such as “TEXTra Points 4 Pizza,” Papa John’s is finding new ways to get its evolving customer base to become more familiar and comfortable with the text ordering system.

Papa John’s started the TEXTra Points 4 Pizza promotion during the playoff’s Wild Card round, offering 25 percent off if the teams scored 25 or more points. They upped it to 50 percent off for 50-plus points during the championship games.

The playoffs always signal the busy season for Papa John’s. With millions of fans preparing to watch the Big Game, Papa John’s predicts to sell nearly three quarters of a million pizzas on Sunday, February 3, making it one of the busiest days of the year. This year, advance online ordering from Papa John's makes life even easier for football party planners. Fans can log on to www.papajohns.com and follow the online ordering menu to place their order well in advance of the Big Game.

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Thursday, 24 January 2008

Pizza is Healthy - 'Cos the Kids Say So!

Tots at Birstall Pre-School were having an Italian feast this week as they made home-made pizza.
The youngsters had fun spreading tomato sauce on the pizza bases and sprinkling the cheese on top, and had even more fun feasting on them after they were cooked.

The cooking sessions fit in with the group's healthy eating topic which they will be studying over the next few weeks. The group meet at Birstall Methodist Church daily from 9.15am to 11.45am and from 12.30pm to 3pm

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Salem Pizza Boss Rolling in Dough!

We like happy stories and stumbled across this one in The Salem News

"Tomi Gjikuria strolled into the White Hen Pantry on Norman Street on Tuesday afternoon, bought a $10 Lottery ticket and walked back to his pizza parlor to scratch it..... (read more)


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Lancashire Pizza Worker to "Star" in American Idol

Fame beckons for a pizza firm worker from Chorley who is to appear on American Idol as part of his company's sponsorship deal.

Technical auditor Chris Devlin, 36, who works for Schwan's in Leyland, who make Chicago Town Pizza, will feature alongside the ITV2 series in 10-second idents, which appear at the beginning, middle and end of each programme during the first four weeks of the show which began on Thursday, January 17.

Chris took part in open auditions held at the Leyland production plant before Christmas to find the most talented employees.

And his comedic skills which included performing a song with the voice of Donald Duck, won him a place on the show.

This series will be aired Thursday and Friday evenings on ITV2, with repeats over the weekend.
It sees contestants attend a series of auditions in the run up to the live final where the American Idol winner is announced.

As part of his prize, Chris and his partner were treated to an all expenses paid stay at Manchester's leading Lowry Hotel the night prior to filming to make sure they were relaxed and ready for their debut in front of the cameras.


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Boston Pizza Supports Charity With its Heart-shaped Valentine Pizzas

Again this year, Boston Pizza will mark Valentine's Day with heart-shaped pizzas that include a touch of charity.

Those who purchase the pizzas will find $1 of the cost going to support the Boston Pizza Foundation and its charities,

This year marks Boston Pizza's 16th annual Valentine's Day fundraiser, which historically has raised more than $2.1 million dollars for charity.

"Celebrating Valentine's Day with Boston Pizza is a great way for our guests to show how much they care for one another and for charity. It's become a real tradition for many of our guests," said Mark Pacinda, president of Boston Pizza International Inc.

"In fact, we sell more pizzas on Valentine's Day than any other day of the year."

Heart-shaped pizzas can be ordered for dine-in, take-out or delivery. Boston Pizza expects to make more than 50,000 heart-shaped pizzas this Valentine's Day.

Boston Pizza guests can also purchase a red paper heart for $1 and write a Valentine message to someone special. This donation will send two heartfelt messages: one to a loved one and one to charity. Red paper hearts are available beginning February 1st and will decorate the entire restaurant will all money raised going to the Boston Pizza Foundation. Paper heart sales account for nearly 75 per cent of the campaign's fundraising total.

"We are very grateful for the ongoing support of the Boston Pizza Foundation over the past 16 years," says Sally Brown, CEO of the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.

"Since 1993, their commitment to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada has helped us raise more than $2.1 million to support heart and stroke research, health promotion and advocacy programs across the country."

The Boston Pizza Foundation raises funds for many charities across Canada, including Kids Help Phone, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada. Since its inception in 1990, the Boston Pizza Foundation has raised more than $7.2 million, helping thousands of children and families in communities across Canada.


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Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Domino's Pizza Outlet Succumbs to Fire

A late-night fire on Monday damaged a huge slice of the Domino's Pizza business at 341 W. St. Louis Ave. in East Alton.

Firefighters from East Alton, Wood River and Rosewood Heights worked to extinguish the fire in the ceiling of the business. The initial call came in around 10 p.m. and a second alarm went out about eight minutes later, bringing Rosewood Heights to the scene.

Firefighters vented the roof to allow smoke to escape and tore down sections of the ceiling inside, spraying the ceiling with a hose. All power and gas was cut to the operation, which should be out of business for the foreseeable future.


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Classic Pizza Delivery Low Budget Commercial

The current wintry conditions reminded us of a commercial for Pizza Pit in Madison Wisconsin from our childhoods. Hope you enjoy it too!






For the story behind it click here

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Nashville Pizzeria Re-Opens 4 Months After Slayings

bellacinos Monday 21st Jan 08 marked new beginning for a West Nashville business marked by tragedy last year. After a double shooting, Bellacino's is back in business.

It was a bittersweet moment for the owner. Store owner Chris Thompson said the last several months have been one of the most difficult times of his life.

Since the shooting deaths of two of his employees last fall, there were plenty of times he thought about closing the store for good, but after seeing the outpour of support from the community he realized he had to re-open.

"Our initial reaction was we didn't even want to come back here," said Thompson.

Thompson not only lost two employees on the night of October 26, he lost two friends. Chris Caris, age 33, and Joshua Cole, age 18, were killed execution style.

Police said former employee Jason Bobo pulled the trigger.
bellacinos
Josh Owens was one of the first customers to place an order at Bellacino's since it closed it's doors almost four months ago.

"We understand why they had to take the time to remodel, for everybody to try and regroup," said Owens.

Several changes have taken place since Bellacino's doors first closed. The dining and kitchen areas have been remodeled, and a memorial has been posted in the waiting area, made to honor Caris and Cole.

The White Bridge Bellacino's will no longer accept cash as payment. Thompson adopted the policy to better protect his customers and employees.

chris thompson"Most people haven't been through what we've been through, now that we have been there have to take extreme measures to just help keep it from happening again," said Thompson.

Customers can only pay with check, debit or credit card. Despite these precautions, no plan is full proof.

"People walk in our doors every single day across the country and cannot guarantee some person isn't going to do something crazy," said Jason Pesola from Bellacino's corporate office.

For now Bellacino's will take one day at a time, hoping customers will enjoy their new look. It's a much different scene from the candles, notes and pictures that covered the store this past fall.

"This was a gathering place for people to show their emotions and show their support," said Thompson.

Now as customers wait for their order they'll be able to read a special memorial - a framed note from a customer that reads, "The Lord is now being served... pizza."

"It's subtle and at the same time makes a very big statement,"

A simple message telling what Chris and Josh were doing at the time of their death and what they might be doing now.

Another reason Chris Thompson re-opened the store was because of the support he got from his employees.

Half of his current employees worked at the store when the shootings took place. While NewsChannel 5 was at the store three people filled out applications.


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Pizza Pizza to Expand into Montreal

Pizza Pizza Limited, a leader in the quick-service restaurant industry, is ringing in 2008 by officially opening its first two restaurants in the Montreal market. The new restaurants, in the Notre-Dame-de-GrĂ¢ce borough of the city, are part of Pizza Pizza's concerted expansion in the province, which plans to open additional franchises, both on and off the island of Montreal, by year's end.

Pizza Pizza, the national leader in pizza delivery and slices sold, operates more than 610 points of sale across Canada. It has been servicing the province of Quebec for almost 20 years through its six traditional restaurants in the Gatineau and Abitibi regions.

Pizza Pizza has spent the past few years preparing for the arrival of these first Montreal restaurants by investing in consumer research, local partnerships, brand exposure and the opening of six non-traditional locations in the Montreal area. The company has established exclusive sponsorship and partnership agreements with the city's major professional sports teams - Canadiens, Alouettes and Impact - and operates outlets in educational
institutions, major venues, movie theatres, and at La Ronde amusement park, where Pizza Pizza's corporate colours adorn the famed "Spiral".

"Building local connections and relationships is important to us at Pizza Pizza and to our expansion plans," stated Pat Finelli, Chief Marketing Officer. "It allows us to gather feedback from the public and generate brand recognition while becoming a prominent player in the city and an integral part of the landscape, the communities and local festivities. People see that we are committed to investing in the marketplace and creating jobs. Making a quality product and working with everybody in the community is fundamental to our business and corporate culture."

An industry innovator in such areas as marketing, nutrition and technology, Pizza Pizza is also introducing some fresh and distinctive features to better serve the Montreal market, acting on the feedback it received from focus groups and other market research.

"From its inception in 1967, Pizza Pizza has always pledged to listen to its customers and be very proactive in terms of product and industry innovations," said Mr. Finelli, who has been with the company for almost 25 years. "This has allowed us to introduce a variety of menu choices and effectively respond to the needs of a growing and diversified customer base."

Pizza Pizza's evolution as a major force in the pizza industry has been marked by such innovations as the first one-number system for telephone orders, with a unique jingle to go with it, and the first computerized order-taking system. Among its many menu innovations are the introduction of healthier lifestyle options that include whole-wheat multi-grain dough and the elimination of industrially added trans fats from all menu items.

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Pizza Fusion Set for Ohio Expansion

pizza fusionPizza lovers in central Ohio could be eating green by the end of this year, if all goes as planned for a small outfit in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Pizza Fusion's founders, Vaughan Lazar and Michael Gordon, have begun parlaying their handful of Earth-friendly restaurants in Florida into a nationwide franchised operation.

A franchisee based in Pennsylvania owns development rights in an area that includes central Ohio and will begin opening restaurants in March, starting with a suburban Pittsburgh unit. Plans call for a central Ohio restaurant by the end of the year, although a location has not been announced.

Lazar and Gordon "were college buddies who wanted to start a restaurant, and at the same time try to be kind to the environment and feature healthy foods," said Randy Romano, executive vice president in charge of franchising.

Pizza Fusion, whose company motto is "Saving the Earth, one pizza at a time," is certainly all they dreamed of.

How does the chain differ from those that buy a few organic veggies and use Earth-friendly light bulbs?

"We use 100 percent recycled bluejeans for wall insulation," Gordon said. "We recycle hot air from the ovens in a heat exchanger to heat the water. All appliances are certified by Energy Star. Our air-conditioning units are 30 percent more efficient than conventional. We install only low-flow toilets and low-flow wash sinks in the restrooms. We use recycled and soy materials. All our lighting is from (compact fluorescent lights). Our sinks are made of bamboo, a renewable resource. The ceiling tiles are 70 percent recycled material. All bags and boxes are recycled. All plasticware is biodegradable."

He paused to take a breath, and he hadn't even gotten to discussing the food.

The menu, Gordon said, is 75 percent organic food, and as much as possible is acquired from farmers near each store.

Pizza Fusion sells pizzas, focaccia sandwiches, wraps and salads.

Pizzas can be customized with toppings such as artichokes and wild-caught shrimp, but the favorite menu item is Bill's Pizza. It features organic New York strip steak; tomato sauce; mozzarella, aged Parmesan and Gorgonzola cheeses; red, yellow and green peppers; oregano; and red onions.

Prices outside Florida haven't been determined, but in Fort Lauderdale, a large Bill's costs about $30.

Speaking of the chain's environmental sensitivity, "You'll see more and more restaurants moving in that direction," said Mark Glasper, director of communication at the Ohio Restaurant Association. "Of course, any business that supports the green movement is moving in a very desirable direction for the country."

pizza fusionGlasper noted the activities of the Danis family, which owns Vino Vino and Figlio restaurants in Columbus and Dayton and recently began recycling waste and purchasing local produce. The Danis family also has purchased energy credits to offset their restaurants' use of fuels.

Other chains catching onto the trend include Organic To Go, spreading along the West Coast out of Seattle, and Ufood, which is beginning to move into the Northeast and southern California, said Darren Tristano, executive vice president of Technomic Inc., a national restaurant consulting firm based in Chicago.

A chain called Burgerville in the Pacific Northwest uses windmills to power its stores, Tristano said.

"Everybody feels better about it."

Food from these outlets will cost more than from traditional restaurants.

"Those who are health-minded are going to be willing to pay more," Tristano said. "But the McDonald's customer will continue to go to McDonald's for price."

Pizza Fusion's Romano was brought into the group because of his franchising credentials, having led such efforts for firms including Sign-O-Rama.

He has acquired commitments for 58 new pizza shops, some of which will be company-owned.

Drs. Gray and Wende Goncz of Pittsburgh are developers for the area that includes central Ohio.
Their first restaurant is scheduled to open in Pittsburgh's Gibsonia suburb on March 1. Gray Goncz notes with pride that it will be the first LEED-certified restaurant in Pennsylvania. The acronym stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, and that certification is considered among the most difficult to attain.

Noting that he has two young sons whom he wants see grow up healthy, Goncz said he and his wife began to move toward organic food and awareness of green initiatives as they were looking for investment opportunities.

One of the things he realized was that people might not take steps to preserve the Earth because it wasn't easy.

"These restaurants make it convenient for people to go green or be eco-conscious," he said. "Now it's as easy as picking up a phone and ordering a pizza."

The stores generally fit into 2,400 square feet and can make use of existing buildings, Gordon said, although that requires extensive retrofitting.

Diners will be able to eat in or request delivery. Each franchise will run a small fleet of hybrid vehicles for that reason.

Parts of this article originally appeared in The Columbus Dispatch
Thank You

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Saturday, 19 January 2008

The Sensationalist Sun Delivers Again - This Time it's The Most Offensive Pizza in Britain

pc pizza

There are very few things that raise any kind of reaction from me, but I just had to comment on this article that appeared in the UK Sun on 19/01/08.
I know they do these things to get a reaction, but as someone who works in the industry I am disappointed when our product gets used as a vehicle for disrespecting the beliefs and choices of others. I mean what did the school do wrong?
They basically asked the kids that if they were ordeing a pizza, which toppings might you want to avoid if you had guests who were of a particular religion or viewpoint.
Sounds like common sense to me and helps to generate understanding and tolerance. Enough of the rant and on to the story. Form your own opinion and feel free to comment.
"Stunned schoolkids were asked to design a politically-correct pizza which would not offend anyone.

Pupils were told to discuss which toppings might upset religious groups, veggies or people with allergies.

In response, The Sun’s culinary experts have cooked up the most unPC pizza in Britain, with ingredients to offend everyone.

Greg McLaughlan, 40, whose daughter Chelsea, 12, was in the lesson, said: “It’s ridiculous to tell kids what they can put on pizza. It makes race relations more difficult.”

But headteacher Jan Charters defended the lesson at Oakwood Technology College, Rotherham, South Yorks – where a fifth of pupils are Muslim.

She said: “We frequently ask students to look at all manner of other view-points so they gain a full understanding of a topic.” "


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Friday, 18 January 2008

Eagle Boys Pizza Spreads Wings For Larger Share of Oz Market

Eagle Boys Pizza has an ambitious long-term growth strategy to open another 200 stores in the next three years.

The pizza chain aims to take a greater slice of the Australian and overseas market.

Eagle Boys MD Todd Clayton said since the company’s buy-in earlier this year, his senior management team had been consolidating its direction and was now ready to move.

“We are aiming to operate a network of over 400 stores by 2010 and cement our position as a leader in the market,” he said. “It might sound ambitious but we have outlined yearly growth objectives and we plan on opening another 66 stores in the 2007/08 financial year alone - from drive-thrus to solution stores.

“We believe we can take the top spot in the pizza market and we have spent considerable time assessing the competition and adjusting our brand and products to reach that goal.”

Clayton said the company was currently finalising a new store model that would anchor the chain’s growth.

“Regional markets comprise a major share of our network and we are going to harness this further with a store model that can cater for smaller populations. We will also focus on providing the highest quality meal solutions in the industry,” he said.

Eagle Boys will be investing over $250,000 in new product development over the next 12 months.

“We know what we want to achieve and we have allocated the right resources to make it happen,” said Clayton.

“The pizza industry is one of the toughest to compete in and while our strategy is ambitious it is backed by solid research, strong management and a clear vision of where we want to position ourselves in the future.”

Eagle Boys recorded an increase of total network sales of 9.4% during the 2006/07 financial year compared to the previous year, and same sales store growth increased by 6.4%.

“In 2007-08, same store sales growth YTD is already tracking 11.7% ahead of last year, and total network sales have grown by 20.7%.

“Each year we experience strong growth and we are focusing on harnessing our talents and working to propel the company into new territory.

“We have introduced new permanent menu items such as pasta and we are currently trialling an online ordering facility which we hope to roll out nationally in February 2008.”

Clayton said the company was also looking abroad for further opportunities.

“We have been considering expansion overseas for many years and we will be investing in research to identify the best locations for our stores. However, our primary focus will be on developing and growing Australia first.”

Since the first Eagle Boys Pizza store opened in 1987 the company has grown to more than 200 stores and employs more than 4,000 people.

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Pizza Hut Uses Extra Cheese and Airs "Get Out And Vote" Ad

Pizza Hut is airing a new ad ( see below) encouraging young Americans to get involved in the political process by voting for the next U.S. President. Pizza Hut is the first company in this Presidential election to remind Americans to vote with the tagline, "It's your choice. Please vote."


The new 30-second ad features two college students, one of whom is questioning whether he should vote in this year's Presidential election. The other student stresses the importance of voting, and encourages the doubting student to let his voice be heard by voting, convincing him to cast his ballot. This is the first time in Pizza Hut's 50-year history the company has run an ad to promote a public policy issue rather than promoting its pizza. The company's new Pizza Mia $5 value pizza is shown in the ad as a product placement, but is never referenced or specifically promoted.

"Today's youth have the power to change history with their vote in this Presidential election. At a time when the number one issue in this election is the economy, we're using our new Pizza Mia ad to encourage everyone to vote and make sure their voice is heard," said Scott Bergren, Pizza Hut president. Young voters, age 18-29, reportedly will account for up to 25% of the electorate in this Presidential election. "There's something about pizza and politics - they just go hand-in-hand," Bergren said.

The new ad is the second in a series of Pizza Hut's Pizza Mia Presidential Election ads. It will run in the Presidential primary states of South Carolina and Nevada just before the primaries, and on national network television. The company's first political ad, which debuted during the Iowa Caucuses and featured snippets of each of the Democratic and Republican Presidential candidates appearing on a debate stage together to address concerns about the economy. It was the first time a company had used actual Presidential candidate snippets in a commercial ad, and was well-received by youth on blogs and social media sites.



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Thursday, 17 January 2008

How Not to Lose Your Vehicle in the Trafford Centre Car Park Ever Again!

Domino's Pizza Car

Well, Mrs "Pizzas and Stuff" was not very impressed when I came home from the shop tonight, having modified her pride and joy, but you know there only so many times you can wander around the Trafford Centre Car Park, searching among thousands of other silver Fords, holding your key fob in the air listening for that tell tale click-clunk that tells you your car is near, before you have to do something about it - and what better way than to make it tax-deductible at the same time.
Junior "Pizzas and Stuff", aged 15, and highly worried about his street cred, nearly chose to get the bus home from school rather than get in the car with me earlier tonight in case his mates saw him. Luckily he saw sense and remembered that one day the empire will be his!
We also got some strange looks from the neighbours as well- perhaps they think we are lowering the tone! (Ha Ha this is Kirkby!)
Come to think of it I may get my flower beds planted in the colours of the logo so that it shows up on Google Earth. (Who said there is no such thing as a bad idea?)

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Domino's Brooklyn-Style Pizza Commercial



Here's another one for you pizza ad collectors. This time it's the one for Domino's Brooklyn-style Pizza. Guilty of stereotyping if you ask me.

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Is West Hampstead the UK Pizza Capital?

Well I suppose one man's nectar is another's poison, so when we came across this story in The Camden New Journal then it seemed only fair that we told you about this Ambrosian Oasis.

"In Highgate, there are moans that every other shop is an estate agent, while shoppers in Camden Town reckon they are swamped with mobile phone shops.

But in West Hampstead, residents say they are “swimming in pizza”.

Italian food chain Strada is to open in West End Lane, bringing the total number of pizza restaurants and takeaways in the street to eight.

“We’re swimming in pizza,” said Virginia Berridge, chair of the West Hampstead Action and Transport group.

“It seems a bit ridiculous but the people seem to like them. Let the market forces prevail.”
Lib Dem councillor Flick Rea said: “West End Lane does have some protection but we we have no control over what sort of restaurant opens – maybe one day people will get tired of pizza and they’ll open something else.”

Let's hope not!

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Pizza Hut Plays Catch Up and Finally Rolls Out US Text Ordering

Pizza Hut has deployed a mobile ordering system that ratchets up the competition in the industry's battle to sell more pizzas using the latest technology.

The unit of Yum Brands Inc this week introduced new cell phone services that let customers order from any of its 6,200 outlets nationwide via text message or the mobile Web.


All the top U.S. pizza delivery chains -- Domino's Pizza Inc, Pizza Hut and Papa John's International Inc -- have invested in online and mobile ordering as a way to boost sales in one of the restaurant industry's most competitive segments.


"We wanted to provide maximum accessibility," Bernard Acoca, Pizza Hut's director of digital marketing, said on Wednesday. "We have a core group of customers that is very tech savvy. They use their phones for everything ... We want to be where the consumers are."


Within five years, Pizza Hut aims to earn half its revenue from orders placed via computers and mobile phones, he said.


Pizza Hut is not the first to offer mobile ordering services, but the Dallas-based company says its service is the broadest and most comprehensive.


Domino's in September gave customers with Web-enabled phones the option to place mobile orders at nearly half of its 5,100 U.S. restaurants.


"We're glad (Pizza Hut is) offering this. We think it's good for the pizza category," Papa John's spokesman Chris Sternberg.


In November, Papa John's was first to offer a text ordering option for customers at all its 2,700-plus U.S. restaurants.


Sternberg said the third-largest pizza chain has offered, but not marketed, mobile Web ordering for about two years. He said the service has been limited by older technology in many cell phones.


Papa John's was first to offer online ordering in 2001 and such orders now account for some 20 percent of sales, he said.


"Online users are the sweet spot now," said Sternberg, who said text messaging will be the next big thing, led by people aged 14 to 25. "We definitely think that's where folks are heading. We think we're on the front end of the text wave."

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Punch Pizza Gets It By Launching Online Photo Contest

As veterans of Online Marketing Initiatives it is always pleasing to see other people "getting it" as well.

After adopting a "No Cameras" approach in one of their restaurants and generating a lot of negative noise because of it Punch Pizza in The Twin Cities have responded in the best way possible - by announcing a Photo Competition!

Read all about it here and if you are local perhaps you could even enter!

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Wednesday, 16 January 2008

Papa John's Reveals Aggressive Expansion Plans for Manchester

Pizzas and Stuff tries to report all pizza industry activity fairly but was quite amazed at some of the inaccuracies contained in a recent Papa John's Press Release, printed here in black.

American-owned pizza delivery group Papa John's today announced plans to open 14 stores across Greater Manchester over the next 18 months, yet conveniently forgot to mention in its press release its previous failures in the area.

The area is littered with previous failed PJ's and there are still some units trading - perhaps these are not up to the required standards for attracting new franchisees.

The company intends to invest more than £3m in the region and create hundreds of jobs for store managers, dough slappers, telephonists and delivery people.

"Papa John's first branch in the north west will open tomorrow in Sale - its 101st store in the UK." - really it is just a re-opening - the previous Papa John's on this site went under in 2004 amid a frenzy of unpaid bills and angry creditors and has stood empty since.

Ian Saunders, UK managing director, said: "We have already invested in opening a company-owned store in Sale and we believe that it will be the perfect place to showcase Papa John's to potential franchise partners. It will take a brave franchisee to go up against the Pizza Hut next door, 2 Domino's and a horde of independents - perhaps that's why its going to be company operated

"We have identified the Greater Manchester area as a key development zone."

The company was founded by American John Schnatter 20 years ago and has since opened 3,000 stores worldwide with annual sales of more than £1bn.

"We believe that the north west is one of the biggest business opportunities in the UK for delivery and takeaway food," said Mr Saunders.

"And by opening a company-owned store we are sending out a clear message to potential franchise partners that Papa John's is one for the future, with almost limitless opportunity and potential."

Good Luck and may you soon recover your Short-term memory loss

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Sunday, 13 January 2008

The Best Pizza Website We Have Seen in a While

papas pizza
We like businesses that keep it simple - in both their operations and their marketing, and when this one came to our attention via Digg we simply had to expose it to a wider audience.

Papa's Pizza is a family-run single store operation in New Zealand thriving in a market dominated by the big boys. They have figured that to do well against corporate inflexibility you need to differentiate youreslf by being accommodatingpapas pizza.

So - no extra to pay for extra toppings, no scowling when a customer asks for one slice of the pizza to be made with no mushroom and make sure you make a song and dance about your fresh, local ingredients and your stonebake oven.

Throw in a "Love it Or it's Free" Customer Satisfaction Guarantee, back this all up with a simple and clean website and then all you have to do is live up to your promises. That should be the easy part.
Good Luck

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Friday, 11 January 2008

Pizzeria Regina in Boston - Packin' 'Em In Since 1926

I came across a great pizzeria website recently and wanted to share it with you all. Although I have not had the pleasure of eating there, I would welcome any reader reviews either via the Comments section or by email.

"Since 1926, Pizzeria Regina has been greeting customers in the North End of Boston with a hearty “Welcome to Boston’s Original Pizzeria!” For over three generations, Regina’s delicious brick oven pizza has been inspired by the love of good food and the special pride of the Polcari Family.

As in the beginning, Regina’s pizza is made with only fresh, all natural ingredients, special seasonings, the finest toppings and baked in a brick oven. The unique blend of cheeses are shredded by hand, the flavorful sauce is specially prepared with plump, fresh California tomatoes, and the meatballs and sausages are made according to an old family recipe.

Over the years Anthony made a lot of friends and his insistence on quality kept them coming back for more. Anthony believes there are no short cuts to excellence. His claim of years ago, “I give the best that I can make”, is as true today as it was generations past.

Since those early days, 81 Years Ago, Pizzeria Regina has grown, but Anthony still keeps a watchful eye over it all. It is important to him that Regina’s Pizza is the best that can be made, the best you can buy. It is a matter of tradition and family pride."

Enjoy!

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Inspirational CEO of Pizza Hut Korea Quits

Cho in-Soo The idea-maker behind Pizza Hut Korea, the country's No. 1 pizza chain, is stepping down in February 2008. And to this news, industry insiders are raising questions whether this is going to slow the growth of the U.S. franchise in Korea.

The position may be easily replaceable if it were a typical company president, but many focus their eyes because Cho In-soo is not only known as a clever businessman, but a standout pizza expert.......

(read the whole story here)


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Doctors Approve Pizza for Poorly ex-Indonesian Dictator Suharto

Adolf Hitler PizzaIs there something about Dictators and a penchant for Pizza?

Recently a hastily-withdrawn advertising campaign by New Zealand-based Hell Pizza featured Adolf Hitler holding a slice of our favourite snack, and now news comes from Indonesia of their former leader requesting (and getting) pizza while in hospital in France.

Here are the highlights of that post from The Indonesian Inquirer

"Indonesia's ex-dictator Suharto ate pizza and had his bed rotated to face Mecca as his health improved slightly, although he remained in a serious condition, doctors said Friday.

Suharto, an authoritarian ruler for 32 years until he was forced from power in 1998, entered hospital last Friday with anemia and low blood pressure, as well as heart, kidney and lung problems.

"Suharto's physical condition is still unstable, [he is] weak but conscious," Marjo Soebiandono, a doctor from Suharto's large medical team, told reporters.

The 86-year-old patient was breathing more easily after X-rays showed a reduction the amount of fluid that had been building up in his lungs, Soebiandono said.

Suharto took advantage of his modest improvement to eat pizza with his family on Thursday, his lawyer OC Kaligis said.


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Wednesday, 9 January 2008

Pizza Cutters for Bikers

mantis pizza cutter Hardcore chopper design has overflowed from the world of motorcycling and into the kitchen.....

Check out some awesome pizzacutter designs by Frankie Flood here at Trendhunter

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Jets Bold Fold Pizza Commercial - Kerpow



We like this one. Low on budget. High on humour. Jets Rock!

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Pizza Heaven Supports School Fundraiser

pizza heavenWhat a heart-warming story we are able to bring you about schoolkids doing their bit for people who are less well off than themselves.

"The Newburgh Enlarged City School District’s Temple Hill Academy in New Windsor concluded its 7th annual "Packin’ It Up for Pizza" food drive with a new school record of food items collected, more than 4,450 items.

The "Packin’ It Up for Pizza" food drive is a collaborative effort that involves Temple Hill academy students and staff, Pizza Heaven in New Windsor which donates pizza to the class that collects the most food items, U-Haul of New Windsor which donates cardboard boxes for packing the food, and the Newburgh Home Depot which donates a truck and the services of its personnel to pick up and deliver the food to the food pantry. Sixth grade students from the classes of Kim Saffioti, Lance Myles, and Jo Ann Copertino assisted in counting and packing the food.

Copertino’s class collected 1,140 food items to win the pizza party. Melissa Higgins’ class came in second with 860 items, Megan Kelly’s class third with 355 items, Saffioti’s class fourth with 260 items, and Nancy Guzman’s class fifth with 167 items.

"I’m very proud of the job our students do with this food drive each year," said Temple Hill Academy Principal Joyce Mucci. "It’s a way for them to learn, at an early age, about the importance of giving back to the community they live in. I’m also very appreciative of the amount of time and hard work members of our staff and especially our Academic Specialist Charles Byrne put into this effort. Our students benefit greatly from their dedication and guidance," said Mucci.

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Free Pizza?

Reader Kevin from The States sent in this ad for H&R Block trying to market to college kids by giving them $10 in "pizza cash" if they file through H&R Block.

This sounds tasty, except that due to their low income, most college kids won't have to pay any taxes and it's pretty easy to do with FreeFile through the IRS.gov website, for free, d'oh.

But file through H&R Block and you'll probably be paying at least $60. So, you could buy yourself $10 of pizza, or pay $50+ for H&R Block pizza. They still teach math in college, right?

But as I heard pointed out by our other reader, just put it on your parent's credit card and get yourself a free pie. Yowza!

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Tuesday, 8 January 2008

Say Cheese with this Papa John's Founder's Day Offer

Papa John's is celebrating 24 years of "Better Ingredients, Better Pizza" by giving customers a free order of mouth-watering cheesesticks with the purchase of any large, specialty pizza at regular menu price.

Whether you are a fan of Papa John's signature 7-topping Works pizza, or any of the other six specialty pies offered by Papa John's, the cheesesticks are on the house with this offer, through Jan. 27.

"We feel honored that for the past 24 years, we've been able to offer our Better Ingredients, Better Pizza to customers," said John Schnatter, Papa John's founder. "So, as our way of giving back for their continued support and loyalty, we want to ring in 2008 with a special offer including one of our great side items."

Over the years, Papa John's has led the way in both innovation and customer satisfaction in the pizza business. In 2001, Papa John's was the first national chain to offer its customers the convenience of online ordering. Since its launch, online orders at www.papajohns.com have grown on average more than 50 percent each year. Customers can even place their orders up to 21 days in advance with Papa's convenient plan ahead ordering feature.

Last year, Papa John's launched its "Favorites Wizard" at www.papajohns.com allowing customers to preset their favorite orders, providing the ability to quickly re-order a favorite combination of menu items in as little as two clicks.

And Papa John's most recent convenience innovation for its customers: text ordering. Once customers set up their favorite orders online at www.papajohns.com, they can text their order in two easy steps from any of the 2,700+ Papa John's restaurants throughout the country.

Headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky, Papa John's International, Inc. is the world's third largest pizza company. For eight years running, consumers have rated Papa John's No. 1 in customer satisfaction among all national pizza chains in the highly regarded American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). For more information about the company or to order pizza online, visit Papa John's at www.papajohns.com.


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