Logistically that makes sense. But I like the Lucali, Paulie Gee, etc type set up where the make table enables Mark or Paulie to not only make the pies, but survey the joint to make sure everything is going well.
Yeah, I hear what you're saying. I wish I had more time facing the crowd than what I do now. Still, I've been working with one of my oven guys for a couple months now and he is just now getting good enough to handle a busy dinner. Busy for us is around 175-200 pies in an night service. I mean, if you're lucky enough to find a guy that can walk in and do it and are able capital-wise to pay him $12-16/hour (or salary equiv., depending on geographical location) with benefits then maybe that's the best course. In my experience, paying somebody a good salary (where an owner is likely taking none) with benefits is not necessarily achievable out of the gates. Depends, really, on the dough involved (green kind).
Personally speaking, as a professional cook for many years, I am quite confident in my ability to take the rough talent of an experienced line-guy or culinary graduate and mould them into a proper cook, whether prepping, hot-line, working the floor, whatever. However, I understand this may not be in your skill-set.
My initial capital requirements would provide for 3-5 weeks of expenses for nothing other than making pizzas and training the people for hours on end every day. Before we are open.
Three weeks is, I'm sure, more than enough. But make sure you do a few practice services with friends, family, small-medium groups of people to feel your feet before opening the doors. That will do more to improve your operation than endless weeks prepping and practicing (with no one to act as guests).
Actually, I will need (I think)
myself making pies
someone to cook the pies
a dedicated kitchen person for toppings prep and stuff like salad making
a "jack of all trades" for cleaning, prep, janitorial, etc
That sounds reasonable, considering 30-40 seats. However, I always get nervous when considering waitstaff. The contact at the table is SO important and frankly, a less-than-well-paid waitron is generally not up to the task of representing your product and establishment the way you would like. Think of all the goofy things servers have said to you at a table and then pretend it's your place. Scary. I don't know, my experience in kitchens and restaurants may have jaded me but I never considered for a moment having servers in my place.
I hope 30-40 seats with table service will give you the turn you need to make your sales goals. Guess it depends on the kind of pizza you're making (90 seconds, 2-3 minutes or longer?) and the size of your market. That's pretty tiny and, not knowing your price point, sounds like you would need to turn the dining room over several times a night to get anywhere.
Menu would be very small. 4-6 regular pies which are 12" rounds with an additional 1-2 seasonal offerings mixed in. Squares would also be available. No takeout or delivery, although take-out could be offered if deemed necessary. Delivery is a non-negotiable. A small selection of beers and a small (10-15) selection of wines, all available by the glass or bottle and not at such absurd mark-ups we see too often. Two or so salads and maybe 2-4 small antipasti as well. No other items. Casual vibe.
Sounds good to me. You'll change your mind about carry-out pretty quick. You'll get so sick of trying to explain why you don't in the first three days that you'll do it anyway. You can trust me on that one. You're right about delivery, though, forget it. Nobody will hassle you about that.
In my dreams this becomes a family operated business that could be passed down and something for future generations to be proud of (hopefully).
Sounds like a nice plan. Good luck. I'm happy to share what little I know about this crazy biz.