Tuesday, 14 September 2010

2010 Mascot Grand National Gets a Pizza The Action

Domino's Pizza Mascot Grand National

The Mascot Grand National – hosted every autumn by Huntingdon Racecourse in Cambridgeshire – is entering its third decade with an exciting new sponsor.

The original and best mascot race in the world, which began in 1999 and is now poised for its 12th running, is to be supported by Domino’s Pizza.

The event attracts a worldwide television and online audience for the crazy antics of the participants, and it’s the highlight of every year for Britain’s mascots.

Mascots the length and breadth of the country step up their training as they prepare for the big day.

It’s an hilarious occasion when lots of mascots run, walk, stagger and stumble over obstacles on a gruelling 220 yards course.

There’s been mayhem, controversy, accusations of gamesmanship, and claims of ‘ringers’ over the years since this madcap race was first run, but strict rules ensure good clean fun.

Georgina Wald, Corporate Communications Manager at Domino’s Pizza, said: “The Mascot Grand National is a fantastic event at Huntingdon Racecourse that represents exactly what Domino’s Pizza is all about - spending special time with friends and family, laughing, smiling and having great fun. We hope that sponsoring the race will inspire our own mascot – Danny Domino – to do better than he did last year!”

Sophie Hodgkinson, managing director of Huntingdon Racecourse, said: “The Mascot Grand National has grown in size and popularity year after year, and we are delighted to welcome such a fantastic brand as Domino’s Pizza as our new sponsor for the 2010 race.”

The Mascot Grand National kicks off an afternoon of jump racing at the Cambridgeshire racecourse on Sunday 3 October.

*Domino's Pizza is recognised as the world's leading pizza delivery company. The first UK store opened in 1985. More than 20,000 staff are employed in Britain and Ireland. There are more than 620 Domino's Pizza stores throughout the British Isles, including the Huntingdon restaurant at 1 Grammar School Walk - 01480 454700.


1999: The Mascot Grand National was born as 17 mascots took part in one of the most unusual sights ever seen on a racecourse. Beau Brummie Bulldog, of Birmingham City FC, won.

2000: Word spread, and 49 mascots lined up, with Watford FC's Harry the Hornet stinging the bookmakers in a flying finish.

2001: Controversy as Freddie the Fox was first past the post, but turned out to be an Olympic athlete. Uproar ensued, and Dazzler the Lion (Rushden & Diamonds FC) roared as he was proclaimed the new winner.

2002: Chaddy the Owl (Oldham Athletic FC) flew to victory amidst claims that he was another ‘ringer’. The accusations were unfounded – it had been Chaddy’s vigorous training routine that enabled him to wing it.

2003: For the second year Chaddy the Owl was crowned victor, but only after several rivals were distracted by a female streaker. An attempted £10,000 betting coup using a Commonwealth Games gold medallist as Sedge the Field Mouse failed when one of the rodent’s feet fell off.

2004: The year of Graham the Gorilla, the mascot of local football club Finedon Volta FC, who sent the crowd bananas.

2005: The bookies expected Chaddy and Graham to dominate, but the Sun newspaper’s Scoop 6 Squirrel drove everyone nuts with a stunning turn of foot.

2006: Football charity Kick 4 Life’s mascot Mickey The Monkey proved he was the business despite an attempted ‘rugby’ tackle on him in the closing stages. Sammy Saint was second for the second year.

2007: Wacky Macky Bear saw off the 2006 winner Mickey the Monkey to win for Saffron Walden FC on his Grand National debut.

2008: The tenth running of the mascot race sees Wacky Macky Bear win for the second year in a row, with Cambridgeshire-based mascots filling second, third and fourth spots.

2009: At last a local winner, as Stag from Huntingdon Rugby Club triumphed. Inside the costume was Heath Crawford, a New Zealand-born rugby player.


Admission on Sunday 3 October: Main Enclosure £15; Picnic Enclosure £8. Accompanied children under 18 – free. Tickets for the Main Enclosure can be purchased in advance, either online at www.huntingdon-racecourse.co.uk or via the ticket hotline on 0844 579 3007.

Parking: Free.

Times: Gates open at 12.10pm. Mascot Grand National at 1.10pm. First horse race 2.10pm.

Contact information: telephone 01480 453373

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Domino's Pizza - Any Pizza Any Size Only £9.99

To celebrate its 25th UK Anniversary Domino's Pizza is running it's very popular £9.99 promotion from Wednesday September 8th 2010 to Sunday 12th September.

It's available for delivery or collection and you can order it online, over the phone or in person.

To order it online you need to go to the Meal Deal tab. One nice feature of using the website is that you can select a pizza from the menu, like a Pepperoni Passion, and then add 2 extra toppings at no charge. You won't be able to do this over the phone as the staff will correctly charge you for the toppings, but it is a feature, or bug depending on how you look at it, of fixed price meal deals on the Domino's website.

On the downside, half and half pizzas cannot be ordered as meal deals. This is just due to technical reasons, though I believe a workaround is being sought.

Happy Birthday Domino's Pizza!

Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Domino's UK Launches Lunch With youTube Takeover

Our friends from Domino's Pizza UK have asked us to help launch their new lunch campaign by promoting their brand on our blog and other platforms. PizzasandStuff is happy to help them gain market penetration of this exciting initiative.

Here's the release.

Pizza delivery expert, Domino’s Pizza, is set to launch an advertising takeover on top video website – YouTube. The takeover is running on Friday [September 3, 2010] to mark the launch of Domino’s new lunch campaign.

The takeover sees Domino’s becoming the first brand in Europe to use YouTube’s new Quick Launch template. The template enables companies to cost effectively develop an ad from their existing images, videos and links and run it directly on the YouTube masthead.

Domino’s will be taking over the YouTube homepage to promote the company’s new UK-wide lunch menu, which includes six new oven-baked subs. The advertisement on the website masthead will include a 20 second lunch video, as well as an image gallery of the new menu and a Google Maps search listing to enable users to locate their nearest Domino’s store. A direct link to Domino’s Facebook page will also appear on YouTube to help generate click throughs and more fans.

The YouTube takeover will be running in the lead-up to lunchtime on Friday and appear on the website until 3pm. The takeover is taking place alongside a range of other media, including TV, radio and press advertising, to help promote Domino’s lunch campaign.

Simon Wallis, sales and marketing director for Domino’s Pizza, said: “We wanted to do something bold and a bit different to help promote our new lunch menu and we’re delighted to be the first in Europe to use YouTube’s new Quick Launch template. What better way to announce that Domino’s is not just for dinner than with our own lunchtime video on the world’s most popular video site. We hope this will liven up the lunchtimes of UK YouTube users and encourage them to get their teeth into our great new menu.”

Domino’s new lunchtime menu features six new oven-baked subs. The range features a number of Domino’s top pizza toppings, plus a host of new filling choices, in a freshly baked ciabatta. Each sub is made to order in-store using fresh ingredients.

Grandma, Grandma Look In The Coop. The Chicken Just Laid her First Egg.

There was much excitement earlier this afternoon at The Liverpool Micro Chicken Farm as we discovered that our little white Amber Star pullet had laid her first egg - and in the right place too!

We first got her back in the middle of May, when, we were told, she was about 9-10 weeks old. She was a lovely looking little thing, tho' when you picked her up she seemed about the size of a small dove.

Amber Star Pullet
For the first week or so, she, and the other new arrival, were terrorised by our last remaining Warren, but things soon calmed down and the girls have been getting along OK, but not without the occasional squabble.

The Warren stopped laying almost immediately the others arrived, probably induced by the stress, while the Speckeldy one, which looks like a Cuckoo Maran, promptly began laying lovely chocolate-coloured eggs that were rather small considering her size.

The three hens struggled through the heatwave in June, but at the start of July Speckeldy went broody, which we thought rather strange due to her young age. She was about 30 weeks old, and refused to move off the nesting box except under the most extreme provocation.

The internet proved invaluable as we tried all manner of things to bring her out of it and return things to normality, the most bizarre of which was giving her a bag of frozen peas to sit on. She turned her beak up at these, and just moved elsewhere in the coop.

Chicken and Frozen Peas
As neither of the other chickens were laying, we decided to lock her out of the coop during the day time. She was out of sorts for a couple of days, but it seemed to do the trick and things have been fine for the last couple of weeks.

As the weather cooled down and all the three hens were looking a lot happier, the Amber Star had a growing spurt, developed a full comb and wattles, and we kept our fingers crossed that she was approaching Point of Lay.

As can be seen from the video above, she has now moved from being a juvenile to an adult and we wish her a long, happy and productive laying career as part of The Liverpool Micro Chicken Farm Ltd.

Please subscribe to our youTube channel, where you can keep up to date with our Tales From The Chicken Coop" or follow Trisha, the Warren on Facebook - yes our chicken does indeed have her own Facebook Profile.

Monday, 30 August 2010

Peppadew Bread for Beginners

Here's another recipe from Stacey at Peppadew, but we reckon it would also be great flattened out and used as a pizza base.

What do you think?

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Domino's Does Lunch! - See the new TV Advert Here

Lots of Domino's Pizza outlets in the UK have traditionally only opened at the weekend for lunch, but now they are all open 7 days a week from 11am.

Pizza is a great lunchtime treat and is perfect for sharing with your work colleagues.

There is also a new range of oven-baked sandwiches which Domino's are pinning their hopes on, though I doubt Subway or McDonald's will be quaking in their boots.

But perhaps they should be, as Domino's are "The Pizza Delivery Experts" and lots of people are tied to their desks during their all-too-short lunch breaks and will really appreciate having their lunch without having to walk half a mile down the road.

"Not just another bloody panini" could prove to be a great strapline.

Monday, 23 August 2010

Domino's Pizza UK iPhone App

Domino's Pizza UK have posted this video about their new iPhone App. You can download it from the App store and use it to place an order for delivery or collection from your local branch of Domino's Pizza.

It has some very fancy graphics, without forgetting the main purpose of the App, which is to order pizza, and is very intuitive to use.

It features Meal Deals, Halfie halfies and if you are unsure of what to choose there is even the option to randomly generate a 3 topping pizza. When I tried this out I had to politely decline the suggestion of Anchovy, Birdseye Chillis and Chorizo :-)

I like the way it remembers previous coupon codes so that you can use them again and again, and also the way it pretty much simulates the experience you get from the full-blown website.

We'd love to know what you think?

Sunday, 22 August 2010

Domino's Pizza Employee- Rubik Cube Solved

We came across this video recently of a Domino's Pizza employee "crushing" the Rubik Cube.

Or rather not!

Friday, 20 August 2010

Chicago Town Pizza Has The X-Factor.

chicago town X Factor Pizza


Are you as obsessed with The X Factor as the rest of the nation? Do your ‘Saturday nights out’, turn into ‘Saturday nights in’ between August and December? Have your days been dull since last year’s show ended?

If so, you’re going to love the guys at Chicago Town TAKEAWAY for bringing you the official The X Factor pizza!

This winning pizza will be in supermarket freezers from August - just in time for you to stock up, ready for this year’s show to hit your screens – and is guaranteed to tickle your tastebuds just as much as the show’s contestants tantalise your TV!

Made with Chicago Town TAKEAWAY’s famous fresh dough that rises in the oven and its delicious BBQ-stuffed crust, it’s topped with Ham, Sausage, Onion, Mozzarella, Red Cheddar and X-tra large Pepperoni – well, what did you expect? This is the only pizza with The X Factor!

You’d be forgiven for thinking nothing could make this better. But that’s where you’re wrong!

They’re also going to give you the opportunity to share your pizza with one of last year’s contestants. Yep, you heard right!

If the pizza alone wasn’t enough to get you excited, Chicago Town will be running a competition on its Facebook Page giving you the chance to win an intimate personal appearance from Danyl Johnson.

The super-hot singer will make his way to your very own living room and serenade you and your mates ‘til your heart’s content! And when he’s done with the singing, you can chat over the free pizza, nibbles and drinks the lovely people at Chicago Town will be throwing in too!

And it doesn’t stop there. The Chicago Town TAKEAWAY The X Factor pizza will also be running an on-pack promotion giving you the chance to win tickets to the live shows, plus The X Factor merchandise and Chicago Town Pizza Packs!

They sure know how to spoil you, don’t they?

First they gave you the Footie Feast - perfect to snack on while watching the World Cup - and now this… the only pizza with The X Factor!

Chicago Town TAKEAWAY – it’s the pizza that just keeps on giving.

Chicago Town TAKEAWAY The X Factor pizza will be in most supermarkets with RRP of £3.49.

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Domino's Pizza UK iPhone App Progress Report

Domino's Pizza UK have posted this video about their new iPhone App. You can download it from the App store and use it to place an order for delivery or collection from your local branch of Domino's Pizza.

It has some very fancy graphics, without forgetting the main purpose of the App, which is to order pizza, and is very intuitive to use.

It features Meal Deals, Halfie halfies and if you are unsure of what to choose there is even the option to randomly generate a 3 topping pizza. When I tried this out I had to politely decline the suggestion of Anchovy, Birdseye Chillis and Chorizo :-)

I like the way it remembers previous coupon codes so that you can use them again and again, and also the way it pretty much simulates the experience you get from the full-blown website.

We'd love to know what you think?

Domino's Pizza UK iPhone App

Now You Know Why Domino's Pizza Delivery Drivers Wear Shorts!

We came across this story from The Consumerist about a Domino's Pizza Delivery Driver going "the extra mile" in order to keep a customer satisfied.

We think it's a great example of how being customer-focussed can generate excellent Word of Mouth Publicity.

Read the comments below the article, especially the one about Strippers in the afternoon. I guess I went to the wrong college. We never got strippers at all, let alone in the afternoon!

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Eating Pizza Can Save Your Life and Make You Healthier

Italian Pizza
Andy, one of our more educated readers from Lincoln, Mass. sent me a link to an article in today's Guardian

A series of Italian research studies suggest that eating pizza might do good things for a person's health....(read on)

Personally, I have to say, from my biased standpoint, that owning a pizzeria is akin being in the bakery business - and nothing beats the smell of freshly-baked bread in the morning.

Fresh, wholesome toppings, 100% mozzarella cheese and dough made only from the classic 6 ingredients with no additives.

Just thinking about it is making me hungry for a pizza right now!

Monday, 16 August 2010

Domino's Pizza Ditches Halal Menu in Trial Stores

Domino's Pizza Halal
Luckily my mum is an avid reader of The Daily Telegraph and she alerted me to this story about Domino's Pizza stopping its trial of a Halal-only menu in 3 stores due to poor sales

The chain enraged customers 18 months ago by completely removing pork from its pizzas in favour of halal-only meat at its branch in Hall Green, Birmingham.......Read the article here

For what it's worth, I am not surprised at the poor sales, and commend Domino's (and it's franchisees) for their bravery in both starting the trial in the first place and in stopping it when it became evident that it was not a commercial success.

Companies should engender a culture of not being afraid to make mistakes, as only by learning from them do you become better and stronger in the long run.

History is littered with examples of companies and their mistakes like the Ford Edsel, New Coke, The Oreo Dessert Pizza, McDonald's Hulaburger and the Sony Betamax.

Yet the companies behind these are all among the most successful in the World, because they were not afraid of failure and knew how to deal with it when they encountered it.

Indeed, the enormously successful Domino's Chocolate Lavacake was born out of the failures of the Oreo pizza, which identified a market for a dessert pizza and the comical Fudgems. Who can forget the advert where the little girl looks like she has just been covered in poo by the supposedly adorable Fudgem?

So instead of quietly chortling at Domino's Halal "mistake", we should be praising them for their bravery in pushing boundaries and exploring new marketing opportunities.

Who knows, people one day may look back and laugh at those unbelievers who can see no future for Oven-baked Subs which have been launched to a fanfare of publicity as the latest menu's headline product and supported by hundreds of thousands of pounds of Franchisees Marketing Fund Contributions. Or maybe they won't!

Personally I hope they're a huge success and prove to be the final nail in Subway's coffin (to quote a Domino's Senior manager).

What do you think?

Domino's Pizza Delivers Breakfast in Bed as Manchester All Saints Store Opens 24/7

Domino's Pizza Breakfast

Residents of Central Manchester who fancy breakfast in bed are in for a treat as Domino’s Pizza in Grosvenor Street, Manchester, is now delivering just that – delicious, hot sweetcured back bacon, sausage and egg subs, Lavazza coffee and even pizza. The store, which is open 24 hours each day, will deliver a piping hot breakfast sub and a coffee to your door for just £7.99 or two of each for £14.00.

Store manager Steve Cubitt, currently Domino’s International Manager of the Year, said: “We are already open until 5am, but could see that there was a big demand for a tasty Domino’s breakfast – so we’ve increased our opening hours and made one available.

“Residents and office workers within the Central Manchester area can now order their breakfast from us and we’ll get it delivered right to the door. And if you fancy pizza for breakfast – no problem! We’ll deliver that too!”

The store will be sampling its new hot breakfast subs around the Manchester area throughout the week commencing August 16.

The hot breakfast subs are available with any combination of sweetcured back bacon, sausage and egg and come with a sachet of HP Sauce and one of Heinz Tomato Ketchup. Delivery is available to anyone currently within the Manchester City Centre store’s delivery area and the store can be contacted on 0161 273 5666.

A sub and a coffee delivered will cost £7.99, or £4.99 if you collect it from the store, and customers can order online too.

Friday, 13 August 2010

Domino's Pizza UK - Special Offer - Any Pizza Any Size Just £9.99

What can I add except to say that it is valid until August 15th 2010?

You can order by phoning your local store or online

There's an iPhone App coming shortly, but I'm told by my moles that it's not quite ready yet. but will be very very soon. Watch this space.

There are the usual Terms and Conditions, I suppose. It can't be used with any other special offer. While stocks last. Participating Outlets only. Regular or Thin Crust Only. A premium will be charged for Dominator or Double Decadence bases. Order a pizza from the menu or Create Your Own with up to 5 toppings.

Err that's it!

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Easier than Easy Peppadew Pizza

You might think that here at Pizzas and Stuff we are couch potatoes who just sit in front of our iPads all day, waiting for our next pizza to be delivered.

Well that's only partly true. Occasionally, we believe it is within our remit to also show that it is actually possible to make your own pizza from scratch.

And how nice they can be when you do!

Here's Stacey, from our good friends over at Peppadew UK showing us how we can make "Easier than Easy Peppadew Pizza"

And if that whetted your tastebuds and you fancy some dessert then take a look at Stacey making Peppadew cheesecake

Domino's Pizza UK Special Offer - Any Pizza Any Size Only £9.99


What can I add except to say that it is valid until September 12th 2010?

You can order by phoning your local store or online

There's an iPhone App coming shortly, but I'm told by my moles that it's not quite ready yet. but will be very very soon. Watch this space.

There are the usual Terms and Conditions, I suppose. It can't be used with any other special offer. While stocks last. Participating Outlets only. Regular or Thin Crust Only. A premium will be charged for Dominator or Double Decadence bases. Order a pizza from the menu or Create Your Own with up to 5 toppings.

Err that's it!

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Someone Feed That Man - Steve Jobs Gets Turned Away From SF Pizzeria

Andy, one of our readers from Lincoln,Mass. sent me a link from Cult of the Mac on this "slow news day" story about our Steve getting turned away from a SF Pizzeria recently.

While the story itself is unremarkable, the post contains a nice list (with links) of some half-decent pizza restaurants in San Francisco.


Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Local Domino's Pizza Manager Wins Global Award

Out of 9,000 Domino’s pizza shop managers in 60 countries, Steve Cubitt has been crowned the best.......(Read the story from The Manchester Evening News)

Well done Steve.

Although I don't know you personally I was honoured to be present at the Rally in Las Vegas celebrating Domino's Pizza's 50th Annversary when your award was announced.

They showed a video biography which demonstrated your passion to be the best and to strive to improve continually. It made me proud to be a Dominoid!

You are doing a great job in All Saints.

Keep it up!

How to Deal With Negative Online Customer Feedback About Your Pizza Shop - Two Contrasting Approaches

Joel Latondress, an IT worker who writes a recipe blog and likes to dine out, ordered a margherita pizza at Amy's Baking Company in Scottsdale on Saturday night.

After he left a review about it in Yelp, the online review site, he was rather surprised at the response he got from the Pizza Shop Owner Amy - (although it has now been removed due to the amount of interest from the media, you can still read the other posts).

Read the story here (Case Study A)

For what its worth, my opinion is that if you want to operate a business these days you have to appreciate the power of the customer to give feedback that is instantly available to the whole World, and you should learn to turn it to your advantage in the way that Chicago Domino's Pizza Franchisee Ramon deLeon did in 2009 (Case Study B)

Read how he turned a negative online review into such a positive outcome here (a Blogpost that has been linked to over 3,000 times!) and watch the famous video apology (seen over 15,000 times!)

I'll leave it up to you to decide the best way to respond to customer feedback

Oh, and just to show you how seriously I take Customer Service, we had the opportunity last year to ourselves "go the extra mile" and resolve a complaint using Social Media.


Sunday, 1 August 2010

Weightwatchers Rhubarb and Raspberry Crumble

Weightwatchers Rhubarb and Raspberry Crumble
This year we have been experimenting with growing our own fruit and vegetables on a very small scale, and we today we finally had enough rhubarb stalks to do something with.

As both me and Mrs PizzasandStuff are on permanent diets we hunted down a recipe for a reduced-fat crumble and soon came across the one below on the WeightWatchers website, which is a great resource whether you follow their diet or not.

At the time of writing we are just waiting to pop into the oven, so I will report back later on it's taste! We haven't split into individual ramekins as there are 4 hungry people waiting to gobble it up!

Update 1 hour later

Grandson No1 described it as like a Haribo Tangfastic, which we deem to be a positive. Perhaps a touch less ginger and a little more sweetener.

rhubarb and custard

Cut 450g rhubarb into long sticks. Pop into a saucepan and add a tablespoon of water. Sweeten to taste with 4 tsp of artificial sweetener. Cook until tender.

Divide between four ramekins and top each with 1 tbsp raspberries and a sprinkling of finely chopped fresh root ginger.

Mix together 75g oats, 25g plain flour and 15g flaked almonds. Stir in 3tbsp of vegetable oil. Sprinkle over the crumble then cook in a preheated 180°C / fan oven 160°C / Gas Mark 4 for 30 minutes.

Cool and freeze. Serve with natural low fat yogurt.

2½ POINTS values per portion, without yogurt

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, 30 July 2010

Easy Peasy Raspberry Jam

Earlier this week I came across a great article in The Guardian about Jam-making.

Anyway it had loads of info about the art of jam-making in general and then a really easy recipe for Raspberry Jam which I have reposted below.

If you've never made jam before, this is a good place to start. Raspberry jam is the easiest and quickest of all jams to make, and one of the most delicious. Loganberries, boysenberries or tayberries may be used in this recipe, too. Because it uses equal amounts of sugar and fruit, you don't necessarily need as much as the recipe calls for. Sometimes when I'm trying to take the mystery out of jam-making for students, I put some scones into the oven, then make jam, and by the time the scones are out of the oven, the jam is made. It's that easy!

Makes 3 450g (1lb) pots.

900g (2lb) fresh or frozen berries
900g (2lb) white sugar, warmed
(use 110g/4oz less if the fruit is very sweet)

Wash, dry and sterilise the jars in the oven for 15 minutes. Put the berries into a wide, stainless-steel saucepan. Mash them a little and cook for 3–4 minutes over a medium heat until the juice begins to run, then add the warmed sugar and stir over a gentle heat until the sugar is fully dissolved.

Increase the heat, bring to the boil and cook steadily for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently (frozen berries will take 6 minutes).

Test for a set by putting about a teaspoon of jam on a cold plate and leaving it for a few minutes in a cool place. Press the jam with your index finger. If it wrinkles even slightly, it is set. Remove from the heat immediately. Skim and pour into sterilised jam jars. Cover immediately.

Keep the jam in a cool place or put on a shelf in your kitchen so you can feel great every time you look at it! Anyway, it will be so delicious it won't last long!

And it tastes fantabulous!

Monday, 26 July 2010

Easy Peasy Peppadew Cheesecake

Our friends over at Peppadew UK have come up with this great recipe for an Easy Peasy Peppadew Cheesecake using Goldews - the mildly sweet and sour version of the more famous Peppadew Pepper.

You can find out more about the Peppadew community by Liking them on Facebook

Sit back and relax while watching the delectable Stacey dish up this delicious dessert!

Saturday, 24 July 2010

Are Electric Curtains Really Necessary?

We'd been in Las Vegas for a week for the Domino's Pizza 50th Anniversary Celebrations when we finally worked out how to open our curtains!

Joking aside, how much money is wasted on electricity for these things, when there are many more things that should have money spent on them?

Oh and if you click on the video you also get to see me without many clothes on (sort of!)

Las Vegas Isn't Just For Losers!

We were in Sin City for the Domino's Pizza 50th Birthday Celebrations and, scared of joining the big boys on the Roulette, Craps or Blackjack tables, satisfied our urge to see what its all about by playing a little video poker at the Wynn/Encore.

And for one short moment, we felt we were onto something big as the opportunity arose for a life-changing "turn of the cards" came about.

Here is our story....

Friday, 23 July 2010

Top That - Domino's UK Wins World's Fastest Pizza Maker Competition

In Las Vegas July 22, 2010, amidst 6,000 cheering spectators, Domino’s Pizza named Pali Grewal the 2010 World’s Fastest Pizza Maker. Grewal, a Domino’s franchisee from the United Kingdom made three large pizzas in an impressive 39.1 seconds, setting a new world record. That’s making three pizzas in 13 seconds each! Pali, Domino’s first international winner, won $3,000 in prize money, a trophy and the coveted title of Fastest Pizza Maker presented by Domino’s President and CEO, J. Patrick Doyle.

“I’ve been hungry for this title for such a long time and it is just awesome to finally win it,” said Grewal. “Like any great athlete, I’ve been practising and practising and now I am going to take a day off.”

The finalists represented Domino’s Pizza stores from around the world, as far away as Malaysia. They had to hand-stretch fresh dough, pizza sauce and top three large pizzas – one pepperoni, one mushroom and one cheese – as quickly as possible.

While speed was important, it was only part of the recipe. Quality was scrutinised as two judges highly qualified in Domino’s standard pizza-making practices, inspected the stretching of the dough, application of the sauce and portioning of toppings during the competition. If the pizza was not perfect, it was returned to the competitor who remade the entire pizza, while still being timed.

Grewal, a multi store franchisee from Surrey has been with Domino’s for over 18 years. Grewal has been making pizzas since he was 13 years old.

Domino’s began the “World’s Fastest Pizza Maker” competition in 1982 to honour pizza makers who best exemplify the company’s philosophy of keeping efficiency in the store to allow sufficient time for safe, timely pizza delivery.

“Domino’s Pizza is extremely proud to employ the fastest pizza makers in the world,” said Doyle. “Our emphasis is on the quality of the pizza, while also using our expertise to get them made quickly. The goal for everyone in our stores is to get hot, great-tasting pizzas to customers’ doors as quickly as possible. The annual ‘World’s Fastest Pizza Maker’ competition recognizes those who do this with the speed of champions every day.”

Monday, 19 July 2010

Wazuzu Las Vegas Rocks Due to The Power of Twitter

Sushi Wazuzu Las VegasIf you only go out for one meal during your stay in Las Vegas then may I heartily recommend Wazuzu in The Encore.

Nicola and Imelda, two of our Twitter friends, had visited a few months ago and positively insisted that we pay Chef Jet Tila and his team a visit, while in town for the Domino's Pizza 50th Birthday Party, with our good friends Andy and Lisa.

After a few Tweets back and forth to Jet, we knew it was going to be something special.

@NicolaMac @LincolnMOD @simonpickles @wazuzuLV lemme know when they visit @wazuzuLV I'll roll out the red carpet!less than a minute ago via UberTwitter

The quality of the photos does not do the food justice, so many apologies for that, but the whole experience really was exquisite.

We has Sushi for starters.

Our server Waymon was attentive throughout and very knowledgeable about the food.

Then, having Tweeted Mike at Tasting Las Vegas to find out more about the food from someone with local knowledge, he came back with the following suggestions.

@simonpickles The Drunken Noodles (I like beef) and the Panang Curry w/ Roti are must gets. @jettila's crew will treat you good.less than a minute ago via Twitter for iPhone

And what great suggestions they were. The portion sizes were massive, the Jasmine Rice had the right consistency, and (as usual) the wine flowed!

This is the Penang Curry.

Penang Curry
And finally here are the Drunken Beef Noodles!

Wazuzu Drunken Beef Noodles
So all that remains to be said is thank you to Jet Tila again, for rolling out the red carpet, to his brilliant team for making the evening so enjoyable, and to Mike at Tasting Las Vegas for the menu suggestions.

So if ever you're in town you must try out Wazuzu in The Encore!

Simon Bernie pickles Wazuzu Las Vegas

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Domino's Pizza Huyton Leads the Way with Foursquare Promotion and Gains International Recognition

Domino's credits Facebook and Foursquare promotions for lifting online sales by 61 percent in the U.K. and Ireland during the first half of this year compared to the same period in 2009. The international pizza chain also announced on Monday that web-based sales now account for 33 percent of its revenue, compared to 26 percent in 2009..... (Read the Full Article here)

With much gratitude to my new TwitterBuddy Chris Heine at Clickz for writing about us in such a nice way.

VendrTV Finds Out About Mobile Pizza of the Highest Quality in Seattle

Nestled in the Pike Place market is Veraci Pizza, a mobile pizza outfit burning apple wood and making just the most delicious Neapolitan pies.In the episode, Dan spoke with owner Marshall Jett about his business and learns the ins and outs of cooking pizza

Monday, 12 July 2010

Domino's Pizza Credits 29% Profits Increase to Social Media Presence

Domino's Pizza Social Media
Domino's Pizza has attributed strong growth in online sales to its use of promotions on location-based mobile application Foursquare and social media after revealing a 29% surge in pre-tax profits to £17.5m....... (Read More)

(Marketing Week)

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Pizza Shop Owner Cycles to New York to Advocate Pizza Diet

Matt McClellan, 33, a Florida pizza shop owner, cycled from St. Petersburg, FL. to New York eating nothing but pizzas.....

Read the full story here

Monday, 5 July 2010

Dunelm Mill St Helens Sets the Standard with Great Customer Service

This story from The St Helens Star speaks for itself.

Going Above And Beyond the Call Of Duty.

Another great example of the Power of Word of Mouth.

Sunday, 27 June 2010

Simon Wallis Joins Domino's Pizza as UK Sales & Marketing Director

Simon Wallis Domino's Pizza
Simon Wallis has joined Domino’s Pizza as Sales and Marketing Director.

Simon previously worked as Senior Director of Marketing UK and EMEA for Papa John’s and brings with him a wealth of experience from this role and previous positions at Pizza Hut and KFC. In his new role at Domino’s, Simon is responsible for sales and marketing activity for both the UK and Ireland.

Chris Moore, Chief Executive of Domino’s Pizza, said: “We are delighted to welcome Simon to Domino’s. We’re sure his knowledge and expertise will be a great asset to our business and help to drive our marketing forward as the Company continues to grow.”

Simon Wallis, Domino’s new Sales and Marketing Director, added: “Domino’s is the best pizza delivery business – not just in the UK, but anywhere in the world and I’m very pleased to be onboard. The brand has achieved phenomenal sales success in the past few years and I’m looking forward to being part of the continued growth and development of the Company. It’s an exciting time to be joining Domino’s and I’m already relishing the challenge!”

For more information on Domino’s Pizza, log onto www.dominos.co.uk.

Friday, 18 June 2010

Domino's Pizza Top Father's Day Gift Ideas

Here's some perfect ideas for Father's Day presents for the man who has everything.

- Socks – it’s a classic idea and something that no-one can never have enough of

- Chore credits – write a ‘cheque book’ of chore credits for tasks such as mowing the lawn that you’ll do for Dad

- Ties – another classic but it’s also a great excuse to get rid of dodgy novelty ties that may be lurking in his wardrobe

- DVDs – whether he’s a Trekkie or a Gleek, he’ll need something to watch in between the football

- An activity day – send him off to drive a supercar or push him over the edge with a day’s zorbing

- CDs – there’s always a special compilation CD for such occasions. Take a look at the latest tunes for Dads or make your own if his taste is a little unique

- Treat Dad to dinner in his favourite armchair by ordering a Domino’s Pizza for delivery. It’ll also save on washing up!

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Domino's Pizza UK Scoops Silver at BFA Awards

Domino's Pizza BFA Awards
Domino’s Pizza, the pizza delivery expert, has scooped silver in the prestigious British Franchise Association (BFA) HSBC Franchise Awards 2010. Domino’s won the silver award within the Franchisor of the Year category.

The BFA HSBC Awards recognise franchisors who are leading the way and demonstrating best practice in the industry. Finalists are judged on their strategies, developments and achievements and Domino’s was presented the silver Franchisor of the Year award based on its continued impressive growth, ambitious future plans and the comprehensive support it provides for its 135 franchisees in the UK and Ireland.

Andy Hirst, head of franchise development at Domino’s, said: “We are delighted to have won the silver in these prestigious awards, which recognise the country’s top franchisors. We’re really proud of the very successful franchise model we provide for our franchisees and to scoop the silver is a fantastic achievement and a great accolade in our 25th anniversary year.”

Celebrating 25 successful years in the UK, Domino’s Pizza offers an ideal opportunity for anyone wishing to take their career in a new and tasty direction. For more details on franchising opportunities with Domino’s, log on here

Thursday, 3 June 2010

KLM Advertise Their Economy Comfort Class in a Novel Way

If you want to generate talkaboutability for the amazing levels of seating comfort offered by your airline, then what better way than to advertise on an airport concourse with literally thousands of passing customers who are about to get onto, or who have just got off from, an aeroplane with restricted space between the seats?

Look how many people are taking photographs and videos ready to upload to their blogs, Twitter or Facebook.

And then film the event yourself, upload it to youTube and allow it to "go viral".

If only it were that simple.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Domino's Pizza Launches National Foursquare Promotion

Domino’s Pizza, the UK’s leading pizza delivery company, has teamed up with social media location application Foursquare to offer Foursquare users both discounts for all and a special free pizza offer for the mayor of any Domino’s store.

With immediate effect, every Wednesday will see the mayor of any Domino’s store receive a free small pizza. In addition, any Foursquare user who checks in at a Domino’s store and spends over £10 will receive a free garlic pizza bread.

The deal was arranged web company Vexed, one of Domino’s digital agencies.

Chris Moore, CEO of Domino’s Pizza, said: “Our customers are heavy users of social media, so it makes sense for us to communicate with them in this way. Following the success of our recent Facebook superfan initiative and affiliates’ widget, Foursquare was the obvious next step.

“Our franchisees up and down the country are looking forward to welcoming their mayors every day of the week – but especially on Wednesdays when we will be cementing the relationship with a free small pizza.”

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Is there only me entering these Internet Competitions or what?

Well I was more than excited earlier this week to see my name on a Tweet from @doritosuk telling me I'd won a small prize in a competition I'd entered the previous week - a case of Doritos and Odeon cinema tickets.

Well, after last week's £100 of Pizza Express vouchers (see the video of our visit here), and being unable to decide if I am incredibly talented, just plain lucky or if there were so few entrants that a prize was inevitable, I have decided to undertake some further research.

Are there companies out there so desperate to grow their online following that they offer prizes that exceed the norm, and if so, where can I find out about these competitions?

I will report back, so watch this space.

Let's have a winning start to the week. Simon Pickles, Christine Wilson, @kevinwj , Sarah Wittington, Andy McKay and @beffff Congratulationsless than a minute ago via web

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Naples' Pizzeria Ovens Fuelled by Wood From An Unusual Source

Pizza Naples
You couldn't make it up!

Oh how we laughed this morning when we saw a story in The Daily Telegraph about Neapolitan Pizzerias using wood from coffins in their traditional ovens.

And if you still fancy a trip to the home of pizza this summer then why not read our posts about The Best Pizzeria in Italy or The Best Pizza in The World?

Friday, 14 May 2010

Election Night Party at Pizza Express Millbank Nearly Graced With Presence of Renowned Pizza Blogger

Mrs Pizzasand Stuff and I are big fans of Pizza Express so we are more than excited about winning a competition recently on Twitter for a Meal for Four at their Flagship Restaurant at London, Millbank close to the Headquarters of the UK's main political parties.

Congratulations @simonpickles for winning his own seat at tonight's Election night at Millbank!less than a minute ago via web

However, as we live nearly 200 miles away we were kindly allowed to transfer our prize to a restaurant nearer our home, and below is a short video about our visit.

To those of you who cannot sit through 42 seconds of pizza porn, the upshot is that we had a great time, were looked after superbly and ate the best quality food.

Guys, you rock!

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Domino's Pizza Huyton and St Helens - The Lunch Specialists

Domino's Pizza St Helens and Huyton specialise in Lunch Orders. Whether they are big or small, for personal or business customers, we can assure you that our years of expertise will go to making your order go as smoothly as possible.

You can order by telephone or over the internet.

Using only fresh ingredients, each order is individually hand-made and can be customised to your requirements.

We can provide cups for your drinks, napkins, paper plates and dips to make your meal go as smoothly as possible and mean there is minimal mess to clean up.

For more information please phone the shops on 01744 733 566 or 0151 449 0449


Pali Grewal Vijay Chauhan Prem Singh

Three Domino’s pizza makers from Bristol, London and Leicester have beaten off stiff competition from across the globe to scoop the title of Domino’s Fastest Pizza Makers in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA).

The two-day competition, which took place in Amsterdam this week, saw Vijay Chauhan from Bristol, Pali Grewal from London and Prem Singh from Leicester competing against Domino’s pizza makers from all over EMEA in a bid to clinch the title. Each country has been holding their own heats with the fastest eight going through to the EMEA finals.

To take part, each pizza maker had to make three large pizzas from scratch – stretching the dough, saucing and cheesing them and then adding toppings of pepperoni and mushrooms. All the pizzas had to be made to standard in as fast a time as possible. Pali scored a blisteringly quick time of 50 seconds, closely followed by Vijay with 53 seconds and Prem with 63 seconds.

Pali and Vijay will now compete against the 12 fastest pizza makers chosen from 9,000 Domino’s stores across the globe in the world final taking place in Las Vegas in July.

Pali Grewal said: “We’ve been practising hard for the competition and for us to scoop the EMEA title is a fantastic achievement. Vijay and I can’t wait to get to Vegas. The world final is going to be a great event and we’re leaving a space in our suitcases so we can bring back the trophy!”

Sunday, 9 May 2010

How to Reach Out to Your Customers In The Digital Age

Peppadew Peppers

As part of my extensive and ongoing research into the various ways that companies use to communicate with their customers, especially in the Digital Age, I came across the website, Facebook Page and Twitter Account of Peppadew.

Peppadew Peppers are a range of whole, sweet, piquante peppers, with a mild, hot and golden variety. They are unlike anything you will have tasted before and totally addictive. Domino's Pizza currently use them as a topping on The Big Smoky.

You may have seen them on the shelves of the major supermarkets, though sometimes they are hidden away. You can usually find them near the olives.

The innovative nature of the Peppadew Online Presence, in my opinion, is how they are trying to get their customers to interact with their brand and thus become Word of Mouth Promoters. Several years ago it would have been unheard to ask your customers to send in a video of yourself using that product. But now it seems as if this will be the future.

Here is the Tweet from Peppadew, promoting their competition to find The Face of Peppadew

Check out our new competition: upload your Peppadew picture or video and win! http://bit.ly/bujpdMless than a minute ago via TweetDeck

Indeed in our online, connected world, businesses will come to rely on Word of Mouth communication more and more as traditional methods of broadcast media go into decline.

Doritos are in the final stages of judging their King of Ads Competition, where customers make an advert for the tasty corn snack, and Peppadew, as mentioned, are asking customers to send in a video of their favourite recipe that contains the eponymous Sweet Chilli Pepper.

And no longer is it necessary to own an expensive handheld Video Camera and have a degree in Media Studies from Skelmersdale Poly in order to make a video worthy of praise. The iPhone 3Gs and many other Smartphones all contain Video Cameras that will deliver more than acceptable results.

Couple that to iMovie or MovieMaker Software on your Computer and within minutes you can produce finished videos, with text, special effects, voiceovers and the like that cannot fail to impress your friends, colleagues, or in this case, judges.

Gone are the days of "Answers on a Postcard" competitons. In our online connected digital word it's all about interaction!

And long may it stay that way.

Below is my effort for the Peppadew competition. I would be surprised if it makes it to the shortlist, however it took only about 30 minutes to edit. The footage was shot while I was doing what I would have been doing anyway, and lots of fun was had along the way, as well as lots of wine being drunk, due to that particular shot needing about 17 retakes!

Saturday, 8 May 2010

Dave Thackeray Says - Don't Be A Generalist - Specialise

Well it hasn't got a direct link to pizza, except that it has, of course, if you are in the business of promoting your pizza empire.

This guy has some interesting points.

His name is Dave Thackeray and you can subscribe to his youTube channel here

There is some great stuff on his Twitter page too. Take a look!

Want to know how to start blogging? Got 60 seconds? Lorelle VanFossen's here to help: http://bit.ly/bffdPj // I think I love her!less than a minute ago via TweetDeck