Places that Rock: The Backspace / My Father’s Pizza / Blind Lady Ale House

The Backspace Austin roasted mushroom.pepperoni.margherita pizza

The Backspace 507 San Jacinto Blvd. Austin, TX 78701 (512) 474-9899 thebackspace-austin.com Residing in a restored 130-year-old building, the pizzeria’s interior is rustic with vintage hanging church lights over the bar, wagon wheel wall décor and stools made from old wine barrel staves. Add intimate seating for 30 and The Backspace is a hip, casualMore »

Respecting the Craft: Classic Chianti

Tony Gemignani headshot

For many years Chianti has been called the wine of Italy. Well known for its original straw bottle, Chianti goes very well with pizza and pasta due to its light character and good acidity content. Other wines, such as Barberesco, Lambrusco or Gragnano, are also amazing and considered to be pizza wines — but ChiantiMore »

Marketing Theme Nights

Marketing Theme Nights

Everyone loves your pizza, but sometimes people need another reason to visit on a weeknight. Some operators find that theme nights are a good way to attract customers on a slow night, create buzz about the restaurant, and most importantly, build relationships with people who become repeat customers. Chris Ransom, owner and manager of GrandMore »

Sizzle Pie, Portland, OR — White Hot

matthew jacobson, bob peyton, sizzle pie, owners

Solid menu and theming keeps Sizzle Pie from burning out One hears the phrase “this is a foodie town” often. Just search social media for photos of consumers’ culinary exploits and you’re likely to find a number of hits for the city of Portland, Oregon. “Eclectic,” “local” and “cool” are words you’ll see used inMore »

Critical Issues: Warning Signs

Blending Cheese

Sometimes, despite the most well thought out business plan, access to capital and a good product, restaurants fail. When this happens, any number of factors — in fact, it’s most often a combination of many — can be to blame. From poor marketing to nonexistent customer service to a lousy location, a few missteps todayMore »

Tip Pooling: Can you legally mandate it in your pizzeria?

tipping, check

Lynn’s Paradise Café, a funky and popular eatery for 22 years in Louisville, Kentucky, suddenly closed down in January after employees publicly complained about a tip pooling arrangement. The owner was requiring servers to carry $100 cash at all times to “tip out” coworkers. Kentucky Jobs for Justice, an organization that advocated for the workers,More »

Service: Is this going to be on the test?

Emmas Server

Educating servers can keep customers satisfied and increase check averages   Restaurant customers ask many questions, ranging from “What’s the special?” to “Is there gluten in the salad dressing?” Servers need to be educated so they can answer even the most difficult queries about the menu, daily specials and wine pairings. They also need toMore »

Trending Recipe: Wild Mushroom Pesto Penne How To

Wild Mushroom Pesto Penne

The key to this recipe is in the sauté, which releases all of the earthy flavors and texture of wild mushrooms. Combined with fresh pesto, this makes for one memorable pasta dish. Wild Mushroom Pesto Penne 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon butter, divided 1½  to 2 ounces sliced assorted wild mushrooms* 1 teaspoon minced garlicMore »

The top 7 reasons pizzerias fail — and how to avoid a similar fate

Boardedbuilding

For Dave Garcia, Alamo City Pizza didn’t go according to plan. In 2010, Garcia closed his six-year-old, San Antonio-based pizzeria. After a failed attempt to buy the building his shop inhabited, Garcia’s landlord presented a 10-year lease with a hefty rent increase. Amid such burdensome overhead costs in a 900-square foot space, Garcia simply decidedMore »

Turn Around

2012 February: Turn Around

Underperforming operations need to get SLOPPIE   If your sales are increasing, give yourself a big pat on the back. If your sales are flat, and you are barely breaking even, welcome to the new normal. If you are afraid of what the future has in stock for your store, the clock is ticking. TheMore »