Pizza Today - March 2017 - 18

with SCOTT WIENER

man on the street

In the End ...

I

just read a quote that completely
terrified me -- and for once it
wasn't spoken by a politician! In
late 2015, the head of a major food
company suggested to investors that
their ailing pizza chain should concentrate less on making good food and
more on making their food easier to
buy. As someone who enjoys eating
delicious food, my heart sank when I
read his words. Not that I was surprised to learn that a huge pizza chain
was more concerned with the bottom
line than they were with their product,
but the blatant disregard for the end
product really hit me. Independent
pizzeria operators often follow the cues
of their biggest competitors, but this
one feels like the shotgun bang at the
beginning of a race to the bottom.
The real problem I have with saying
that easy is better than good is that
the two are not inversely proportional.
This is pizza, after all. It's a handful of
ingredients mixed together, flattened,
topped with a few other ingredients
and then baked. It couldn't get much
simpler. There's why I'm offended by

1 8 / P I Z Z AT O D AY. C O M / M A R C H 2 0 1 7

Is Easy Better than Good?

the idea that making good pizza is just
too hard to do when you're trying to
maximize another part of your business
model.
On the upside, I completely agree
with the concept of streamlining the
ordering process. Sloppy menus with
too many items overwhelm me, so
I appreciate brevity in that respect.
This is one of the main reasons for the
growth in fast casual. It takes complex
processes and reduces them to their
components. A dish is no longer a
fully realized product; now it's a choice
of pasta shapes, sauces and proteins.
Maybe it's a choice of tortillas, beans,
proteins and salsa heat levels. Or
perhaps it's a choice of crusts, sauces,
cheeses and toppings. As soon as
your chef 's ego heals, you'll admit it's
easier for the customer. This is not my
preferred way to experience food, but I
can see the allure for a business that's
concerned with speed.
Last week I challenged myself to
investigate this new restaurant trend
by visiting two concepts that utilize
a streamlined ordering system. One

was a Greek restaurant in New York
and the other served poké (Hawaiian
raw fish salad) in Seattle. Both were
extremely simple, with menu boards
clearly defining each step of the ordering process. Both ordering processes
were super simple, and I was at my
tables with fresh meals within minutes
of arriving. Now for the bad news:
only one of the dishes was any good.
Taking the easy way out only gets you
so far before everyone realizes that the
emperor is not wearing any clothing.
It's highly effective to put yourself
in the mind of your customer to better
understand your pizzeria's flow. Any
bottlenecks in the system can and
should be fixed before they clog up the
whole place. Just remember that the
customer probably won't come back for
your easy ordering system if the pizza
they get tastes like garbage. ■
SCOTT WIENER is

the founder of Scott's
Pizza Tours in New York City and
SliceOutHunger.org.

By MANDY DETWILER


http://www.SliceOutHunger.org http://www.PIZZATODAY.COM

Pizza Today - March 2017

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pizza Today - March 2017

Pizza Today - March 2017
Commentary
Contents
Contributors
Expo Spotlight
Interact
Conversation
Man on the Street
Respecting the Craft
On Tap
Destinations
Knead to Know
Menu Strategies
Tabletop Condiments
Brand With Merchandise
Speeding Up Service
America’s No. 1 Topping: Pepperoni
Neo vs. Neapolitan
How To Change Products
Dessert Pizzas
Up-to-Date Financials
Upgrading Tech
Analyzing Competition
What is Baker’s Lung?
Start Up Stories
Community Partnerships
Vital Sanitization
Road to Expo: Doug Ferriman and George Hadjis
Unemployment Claims
Pizza Today on the Road: Theo’s, New Orleans, LA
Pizza Today on the Road: Pupatella, Arlington, VA.
Pizza Today on the Road: Pizzeria Paradiso, Washington D.C.
Preferred Supplier
Pizza Today Yellow Pages
The Marketplace
Reader’s Resource
Trending Recipe
Pizza Today - March 2017 - CT1
Pizza Today - March 2017 - CT2
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Pizza Today - March 2017
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Cover2
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Commentary
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 4
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 5
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Contents
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 7
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 8
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 9
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Contributors
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 11
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Expo Spotlight
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 13
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Interact
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 15
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Conversation
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 17
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Man on the Street
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 19
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Respecting the Craft
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 21
Pizza Today - March 2017 - On Tap
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 23
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Destinations
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 25
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Knead to Know
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 27
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 28
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 29
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 30
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 31
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Menu Strategies
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 33
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 34
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 35
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Tabletop Condiments
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 37
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 38
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 39
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Brand With Merchandise
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 41
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 42
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 43
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Speeding Up Service
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 45
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 46
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 47
Pizza Today - March 2017 - America’s No. 1 Topping: Pepperoni
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 49
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 50
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 51
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Neo vs. Neapolitan
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 53
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 54
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 55
Pizza Today - March 2017 - How To Change Products
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 57
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 58
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 59
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Dessert Pizzas
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 61
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 62
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 63
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 64
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 65
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Up-to-Date Financials
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 67
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 68
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 69
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Upgrading Tech
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 71
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 72
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 73
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Analyzing Competition
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 75
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 76
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 77
Pizza Today - March 2017 - What is Baker’s Lung?
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 79
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 80
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 81
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Start Up Stories
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 83
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 84
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 85
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Community Partnerships
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 87
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 88
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 89
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Vital Sanitization
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 91
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 92
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 93
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Road to Expo: Doug Ferriman and George Hadjis
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 95
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 96
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 97
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Unemployment Claims
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 99
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 100
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 101
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Pizza Today on the Road: Theo’s, New Orleans, LA
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 103
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 104
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 105
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 106
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 107
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 108
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 109
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Pizza Today on the Road: Pupatella, Arlington, VA.
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 111
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 112
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 113
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 114
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 115
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Pizza Today on the Road: Pizzeria Paradiso, Washington D.C.
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 117
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 118
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 119
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 120
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 121
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Preferred Supplier
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 123
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 124
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 125
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 126
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 127
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 128
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 129
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 130
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 131
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 132
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 133
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 134
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 135
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 136
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 137
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 138
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 139
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 140
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 141
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 142
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 143
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 144
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 145
Pizza Today - March 2017 - Pizza Today Yellow Pages
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 147
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 148
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 149
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 150
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 151
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 152
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 153
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 154
Pizza Today - March 2017 - The Marketplace
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 156
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 157
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 158
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 159
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 160
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 161
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 162
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 163
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 164
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 165
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 166
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 167
Pizza Today - March 2017 - 168
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