Pizza Today - August 2020 - 49

and the only way that is going to
happen is through listening to
(our team) and listening to the
community that we are in. We are
trying to be a good community
partner that lends itself to the
team, as well. We need to be a good
community partner within the
restaurant with our team."
Learning and Adapting
When it comes to the business,
It's not enough for Brandon and
Zane to be good. "I say we are like
85-percent nailing it all the time,"
Brandon says. "But I think that
85 percent goes a long way. And
we are constantly trying to make
it 90 to 95, trying to get to 100.
I think the customers pick up on
that we are always trying to get
better. Every time you come to
the restaurant something has been
updated or changed or cleaned up.
We're constantly reinvesting in the
business. I feel like that goes a long
way, too."
One of the most beneficial
changes Zane and Brandon made
a little over three years ago was
switching to a tablet-based POS
system. "Adding that new POS
system really made us more efficient
and helped cut down on the errors,
as well," Brandon says.
Brandon and Zane strive to keep
learning and growing. "I always feel
like being a small business owner
is just doing a bunch of things that
you are probably not comfortable
doing or not really good at," Zane
says. "There are some things I think
we are good at, not a lot. We are
willing to learn. And now that
we've gotten a little busier, we can
hire people that can help fill those
weaknesses."
A willingness to learn had helped
Via 313 become beloved in the
Austin food scene. "The fact that we
are nine years in and not irrelevant,"
Brandon says. "I think that is the
hardest thing is staying relevant in
the current climate. And just having
that loyalty from the customer base
is just incredible."

New Challenges
Just as every pizzeria has adapted
to operating a restaurant during
the COVID-19 pandemic, Via 313
quickly shifted to a carryout-only
model. With a large percentage of
Via 313's business coming from
dine-in, Brandon and Zane built
the model to run at 60 percent of
its normal sales. They restructured
staffing needs and adjusted server
pay to fit a carryout model. They
also added a service charge that
goes to the team. "The days are
condensed and it's just one shift
for everyone and we cut out
everything, you know, no tableseating app, very little CO2, no
linens being delivered," Brandon
says. "We pretty much have the bill
down to everything that is the bare
minimum that we need to run the
restaurant with a carryout platform,
and it's proven to work well."
Zane concurs. "(The model)
works and we're fortunate that it
works," he says. "It's sustainable like
this for the time being but this isn't
what we set out to do. Yes, we can
serve a lot of the pizzas like this,
but the hospitality piece is lost for
the most part." The hunt brothers
are eager to get back to what love:
hospitality.
Our 2020 Independent Pizzeria
of Year offer parting advice to
fellow and prospective operators:
"I think it's just doing it whatever
you want to do," Brandon says.
"That's the biggest life lesson that I
have learned from all of this. 'Man,
I wish we would have done this
five years ago.' You just got to do
it. If you have an idea, just put it
on paper, make sure it makes sense
financially and do it."
Zane follows up Brandon.
"Nobody is going to give you
anything," he says. "You're going
to have to go work for it and prove
yourself, prove your worth." ■

DENISE GREER is Executive Editor
at Pizza Today.

VIA 313 AT A GLANCE
Location: Austin Texas
Year Established: 2011
Number of Units:
2 brick-and-mortar locations, 2 trailers
Concept Type:
Full-Service Casual Dining with Full Bar
Quick-serve Walk Up Food Trailer
Gross Annual Sales:
$12 million
Number of employees: 200
Pizza Styles:
Detroit
Bar Pie
Gluten Free
Popular Pizzas:

The Detroiter
Smoked Pepperoni under the cheese,
Natural Casing Pepperoni on top

The Cadillac
(Inspired by Tony Gemginani)
Gorgonzola, Fig Preserves, Prosciutto di
Parma, Parmesan, Balsamic Glaze
Via313.com
@via313 on Instagram
A U G U S T 2 0 2 0 / P I Z Z AT O D AY. C O M / 4 9


http://www.Via313.com http://www.PIZZATODAY.COM

Pizza Today - August 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pizza Today - August 2020

Pizza Today - August 2020
Commentary
Digital
Conversation
Mike’s Monthly Tip
Man on the Street
Building Blocks
Tony’s Trending Recipe
Knead to Know
Destinations
Product Showcase
Pizza Today Yellow Pages
The Marketplace
Expo Spotlight
Improving Ticket Times
Employee Handbook Revamp
Scratch Dressings
Menu Refit
Pizza Today - August 2020 - CT1
Pizza Today - August 2020 - CT2
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Pizza Today - August 2020
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Cover2
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Commentary
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 4
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 5
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 6
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 7
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Digital
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 9
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Conversation
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 11
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Mike’s Monthly Tip
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 13
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Man on the Street
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 15
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Building Blocks
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 17
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Tony’s Trending Recipe
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 19
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Knead to Know
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 21
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 22
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 23
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Destinations
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 25
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Improving Ticket Times
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 27
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 28
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 29
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Employee Handbook Revamp
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 31
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 32
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 33
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 34
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 35
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Scratch Dressings
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 37
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Menu Refit
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 39
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 40
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 41
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 42
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 43
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 44
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 45
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 46
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 47
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 48
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 49
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Product Showcase
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 51
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Pizza Today Yellow Pages
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 53
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 54
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 55
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 56
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 57
Pizza Today - August 2020 - The Marketplace
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 59
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 60
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 61
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 62
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 63
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 64
Pizza Today - August 2020 - 65
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Expo Spotlight
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Cover3
Pizza Today - August 2020 - Cover4
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