Old 01-12-2012, 04:54 AM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: N. KY
Posts: 203
Default Re: Thinking of opening up a small WFO pizza joint

You posted 5 or 6 months ago, so hopefully you are on your way by now..

flippinsweet and Tenorio have a handle on it...don't compete with the other guys, you are already in a higher tier of food service offerings...but, be aware that most of us (small business people) don't make it in our "hobby-turned-pro" because although we make a killer product, we aren't tough enough in "business-think" to cut it.

That being said, not to discourage you, but to make sure you are ready for the ride. Are you already self employed in some other field? Do you have a great income/cash flow to pump into this project? Are you surrounded by family/spouse/friend that will help or at least be supportive? What are your goals for this shop? Total income to support you, hobby income to play with, to what degree does the success of this shop matter to you?All of that matters to a degree, but in the end, it's the strength of your heart that will pull you through or not.

Buy everything used, except where noted;
-hobart 60 qt is minimal, 125 qt. spiral suggested, (you will grow into it)
-manual baker's scale for dough table, faster than digital.
-digital scale for prep/make up table cheese control (eTundra.com Yamato PB200 for $210, LOVE mine)
-can you buy a house and convert to your shop in your town? How is the zoning/building dept? Who will do the work to convert from present use to your commercial use? Public entry buildings are a PITA about compliance/safety etc with the state..
-buy your prep table new or very new...refrigeration can be tempermental and costly to repair on older "good deals" by the time you replace compressors, door gaskets, bad hinges, wheels..you're into some pretty good money, unless you get a great table at a fair price, this monster Randell would be a so-so deal at $1,600 RANDELL MEGA PIZZA REFIGERATED PREP TABLE | eBay
or you could look at the Leader brand, lot of bang for the buck, new from this ebay seller;
120" Leader Pizza Prep Table | eBay

or this seller; NEW 96" LEADER Pizza Prep Table | eBay

-make a whole batch of dough, at least 25 lb/half bag, it will keep for 4 days if your refrigeration is good and you use cold enough water. Will you use sheet pans with trash bag covers, dough boxes, how will you store dough?
-no POS to start with, pad, pen, calculator and a cash drawer...remember, you are trying to make money, not spend it at this point and POS aint' cheap.
-cans of pop/drinks...the fountain is a pain, not as profitable and requires an ice machine, more complications. Pop you can buy on sale, put anything you want in (teas, waters, energy, juice...and way more profitable.
-tables and chairs are at every online equipment auction...auctionwave, bidfta.com, even ebay and craigslist have em all the time...restaurants are going belly-up faster than I have ever seen in my life...plenty of equipment to choose from at fair prices...Some are corporate stores pruning down (no tears for those guys) and some are mom and pop stores going bust because someone told them they made good food and encouraged them to get into business (I see this happen all the time)...something to think about !

The MAIN piece of "must have equipment" is a big pair of balls if you are going into business for yourself, in this economy, but you must start somewhere. Don't take that as a wet blanket on your idea, there is no one that believes in the self employed dream more than I, but it's hard work 24-7 and I wouldn't have it any other way.
Good Luck to you !
Trying to learn what I can about flours, fermentation and flames...

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Old 02-11-2012, 05:22 PM
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: grapeview wa
Posts: 46
Default Re: Thinking of opening up a small WFO pizza joint

I'm kinda in the same position you are, the comessary is necessary in wa. st.
I'm going to look for space to rent . In Seattle there is a company that leases out prep space for about 20 small business, and as far as I know the they all have a mobile.
Bottom line the expense will probaly be less going this way. Good luck
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