October 10, 2017 |

World pizza champion revitalizes 21-year-old pizzeria


Instead of celebrating his Guinness world record and World Pizza Games gold medal at Disney World, Mitch Rotolo, Jr. returned home to Baton Rouge and got right to work, bringing the lessons he learned in his international training to his family business, Baton Rouge favorite Rotolo’s Pizzeria. As a second generation restaurateur, Rotolo, Jr. is excited to launch Rotolo’s Craft & Crust as the reimagined and refreshed version of his father’s pizzeria.

“Rotolo’s Craft & Crust is the beginning of passing the Rotolo’s brand to Jr.,” said Mitch Rotolo, founder of Rotolo’s Pizzeria, which opened as a dive bar pizza pub in 1996. “After 20 years of making pizza, we knew it was time to bring back the funk and grit that made the vibe of the original Rotolo’s great.”

The shift from pizzeria to Craft & Crust denotes the restaurant’s renewed emphasis on local craft beverages and scratch kitchen cooking. The RCC tagline, “Good Food. Good Vibes. No Bullsh*t.” captures the essence of the brand’s efforts to bring its customers delicious, elevated food featuring handmade recipes that can be enjoyed in a great atmosphere with friendly service and real personality.

RCC begins serving the public on October 9, opening daily at 11 a.m. The restaurant will remain open to 2 a.m., with hours extending to 3 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

Construction on a second RCC location is underway in Ruston, La., with plans to transition current Rotolo’s Pizzeria franchises to the RCC brand over the next three to five years.

RCC’s updated menu features expertly crafted recipes, including many award-winning combinations, and introduces premium ingredients like fresh pulled mozzarella, natural casing pepperoni and bruschetta. For customers unsure of committing to a whole pizza, RCC introduces

the slice bar concept as a walk-up option. Customers can sample slices of daily featured pizzas, cut to order in any size slice and purchased by weight.

“The Slice Bar lets our customers fine tune their palette while keeping us on our toes creating and testing new pizzas,” Rotolo, Jr. said. “There is no menu for the Slice Bar. Instead, we’ll use what is fresh and available each day.”

Building on the restaurant’s Craft & Crust concept is the 40-tap bar, featuring a selection of local craft brews, along with wine and signature cocktails on draft.

“What better childhood could you have? I got to grow up in a pizzeria. Now, I’m thankful that my dad and his team set such a strong foundation for me to follow my passions,” Rotolo, Jr. said.

More information about Rotolo’s Craft & Crust can be found at rotolos.com/craftandcrust

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