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  • #1 by 9slicePie on 21 Jul 2021
  • Someone I know is thinking of opening a small pizza shop.


    And I figured this forum is a great place to ask:  Can anyone with experience in this please post as much advice/recommendations/tips as possible?  (mind you, this person has no experience in the food service sector)


    Thank you.
  • #2 by Pizza_Not_War on 21 Jul 2021
  • Tell your friend to go work in a shop to get an idea of what is involved.
  • #3 by 9slicePie on 21 Jul 2021
  • Tell your friend to go work in a shop to get an idea of what is involved.

    I see your angle, but that's not feasible at the moment.  Just looking to gather some tips for him from anyone with experience on this forum.

  • #4 by dedede on 21 Jul 2021
  • I see your angle, but that's not feasible at the moment.  Just looking to gather some tips for him from anyone with experience on this forum.

    Failing this, hire somebody who has lots of experience. I worked at a very standard Roma-supplied NJ pizzeria in my late teens and still have so much to learn.
  • #5 by waltertore on 21 Jul 2021
  • you are guaranteed to fail without being  highly skilled in pizza making, running the business side, as well as employee side. Even with a good pizza maker you will fail cause they will most likely leave sooner than later.  To be honest I am amazed at how many people try and fail with the approach you mentioned. 
  • #6 by corkd on 21 Jul 2021
  • I see your angle, but that's not feasible at the moment.  Just looking to gather some tips for him from anyone with experience on this forum.
    There are several experienced shop owners on this forum who have freely shared EVERY.SINGLE.DETAIL. Their generosity with info blows me away every time I read some of it. It’s a deep dive and much more than just “tips”.
  • #7 by HansB on 21 Jul 2021
  • One could have donated, like myself, while Walter was begging for money on this site and Go Fund Me (?) and if you'd donated money and asked what pepperoni he was using, he'd say his lawyer wouldn't allow him to say! ;D ;D

    ^^^
  • #8 by SonVolt on 21 Jul 2021
  • My wife works in the restaurant services biz... signs new restaurants up every day, gets to know the owners etc.  I read her this and she said "they'll be out of business in 18 months".
  • #9 by waltertore on 21 Jul 2021
  • I share but am selective with what I share.  I never said with the go fund me -  I will share my recipes and such.  It was to help us get out here so we could hire people with disabilities. That was the root of it and we now have people with disabilities making up 30% of our staff.  The advice I gave to the this thread is solid.  You can't build a house if you don't know a hammer from a saw  :-D
  • #10 by 9slicePie on 22 Jul 2021
  • you are guaranteed to fail without being  highly skilled in pizza making, running the business side, as well as employee side. Even with a good pizza maker you will fail cause they will most likely leave sooner than later.  To be honest I am amazed at how many people try and fail with the approach you mentioned.
    I read her this and she said "they'll be out of business in 18 months".

    whoaaaaaa.....  let's all calm down..... just asked for some advice/tips/recommendations.  You guys already condemned the fella  :-D


    There are several experienced shop owners on this forum who have freely shared EVERY.SINGLE.DETAIL. Their generosity with info blows me away every time I read some of it. It’s a deep dive and much more than just “tips”.

    ..... which is precisely why I wanted to ask this forum.  But wow, based on the responses so far (ie: he will fail!
     out of business! 18 months!), maybe I shouldn't have?  :-\


    EDIT:  He will maybe consult with pizzerias later on.  In the meantime, I simply wanted to ask for some [other] tips.
  • #11 by Heikjo on 22 Jul 2021
  • How much have you been searching the forum yourself? There is already lots of information here. PMQ is also a good resource.

    There are lots of things to consider when opening a pizzeria, and it’s not just limited to the pies. You have been given some good advice already, and the general consensus is that one shouldn’t take it lightly, ideally work somewhere similar first and expect to put a lot of work in.

    What kind of tips are you looking for and how detailed?
  • #12 by 9slicePie on 22 Jul 2021
  • What kind of tips are you looking for and how detailed?

    I don't know really,,, maybe more than just "work in a pizza shop".

    See:

    There are several experienced shop owners on this forum who have freely shared EVERY.SINGLE.DETAIL. Their generosity with info blows me away every time I read some of it. It’s a deep dive and much more than just “tips”.


    It's ok though, I just thought I'd gather a few tips for this person. Thanks, everyone.
  • #13 by jsaras on 22 Jul 2021
  • Mike Bausch’s new book “Unsliced” is terrific in terms of explaining the business aspects of running a restaurant.   Most of his advice applies to any business that deals witb the public.
  • #14 by Jon in Albany on 22 Jul 2021
  • I haven't listened for a while, but the Smart Pizza Marketing podcast uses to interview different shop owners. How they started, difficulties and how things were going. Some were pretty interesting.

    Used to drive around and listen to more podcasts than I do now.

    I can see how you would feel that there is kind of a eminent failure pile on, but starting any kind of restaurant with no experience has been well documented as a recipe for financial losses. There are definitely a few winning versions of the story, but the majority of really good home cooks that keep getting told, "You should open a restaurant" don't end well. A lot of restaurants with experience behind them don't end well either.

    Another aspect to consider is that the focus on the forum is on very high quality pizza. If you're friend is more about just pushing a chain style pizza out the door (there are people that love chain style pizza, 18,000 Dominoes locations tell that story) the forum might not be the best place for advice. I cant believe any of the buildouts I have seen on the forum have 2 for $5.99 specials like a Dominoes.

    I heard a joke in the distilling world but it kind of relates to this: You want a distillery worth a million dollars? That's easy, it costs two million dollars.
  • #15 by HansB on 22 Jul 2021
  • Do you realize how many things we would not have today if they listened to the people that said you'll never make it?
  • #16 by RHawthorne on 23 Jul 2021
  • I see your angle, but that's not feasible at the moment.  Just looking to gather some tips for him from anyone with experience on this forum.
    Why is that not feasible? I think most anybody in the pizzeria world or in the foodservice world in general would say that opening any kind of restaurant with no restaurant experience is a terrible idea. That's exactly why most startup restaurants fail; everybody and their brother thinks they would just somehow magically know how to run one if they tried (with no experience), and it doesn't work. It's not just about making and serving food. There are a ton of things you need to know, and there's really no way to learn properly without working for someone else first, when you don't have to take on all the financial risk yourself. If your friend is already wealthy and doesn't need the business to make a profit, that's one thing. Even then, I can think of far better ways to blow money than to open up a restaurant that's almost guaranteed to fail. I hate to sound negative, but I've worked for no less than three restaurants that went out of business, and at least on other that only barely made it, so I have a pretty darn good idea of what makes them work, and what makes them fail. If your friend doesn't want to waste his money and run a business into the ground, he seriously needs to work for somebody else first. Believe me.
  • #17 by Jackitup on 24 Jul 2021

  •  (mind you, this person has no experience in the food service sector)

    I would say this, I would venture into no business, be it up front or as a silent partner, without some preparation first. If this is going to be a hobby and a tax right off and he can afford the bump if it doesn't take..... fine. But if intended long term investment for livelihood, take the time for a period of class work in food service business and management, online or in classroom. Cheap insurance to protect your investment both mentally and financially! Learn how to check your own chute before you start jumping out of planes!
  • #18 by piesofsatan on 27 Jul 2021
  • I think people are just saying - use the search function. Bellucci has an extensive, detailed thread about opening his shop and so do many others.

    Working in a pizzeria before opening a pizzeria without any experience is a very smart tip and I don’t know how that could be contested ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  • #19 by 9slicePie on 27 Jul 2021
  • Why is that not feasible?

    See:
    EDIT:  He will maybe consult with pizzerias later on.  In the meantime, I simply wanted to ask for some [other] tips.


    I would say this, I would venture into no business, be it up front or as a silent partner, without some preparation first. If this is going to be a hobby and a tax right off and he can afford the bump if it doesn't take..... fine. But if intended long term investment for livelihood, take the time for a period of class work in food service business and management, online or in classroom. Cheap insurance to protect your investment both mentally and financially! Learn how to check your own chute before you start jumping out of planes!

    I agree.


    Working in a pizzeria before opening a pizzeria without any experience is a very smart tip and I don’t know how that could be contested ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    Noone's contesting it.



    Thanks everyone.
  • #20 by Pizza_Not_War on 27 Jul 2021
  • Noone, might want to add that to signature. No one.
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