- September 18, 2020 -
- August 12, 2020 -
Here’s a little look at some of the delicious new offerings on the menu at GB•PIZZA•CO this August. We’ve been tirelessly taste-testing and playing around with new flavours and additions – it’s a hard job, you know.
Our new specials make the most of the season. Nduja, roasted sweetcorn, coriander and lime is a real taste of summer, given a spicy kick by the nduja we’ve sourced from British meat curers, Cobble Lane.
Chilli- and honey-roasted pineapple and Chandler & Dunn ham is our riff on a much-debated trashy classic, the Hawaiian.
And there’s a Spanish-inspired veggie pizza with roasted red peppers, Padron peppers (those Russian roulette green peppers, where every one in a handful is spicy) roasted with Maldon salt, roasted sweetcorn, manchego cheese and paprika flakes.
As well as our ever-popular wines on tap, we have now introduced four new wines that are served by the bottle. Made in Bethnal Green in London, Renegade Wines buy in the finest grapes and hand-press, blend and bottle the wines in the heart of the East End. What we loved about the wine – apart from its deliciousness, of course – is the branding and labelling, using close-ups of the faces of people in their neighbourhood. We’ll be stock a Sauvignon Blanc, made from French grapes; a punchy red made from grapes harvested and first-fermented in Albania, and then bottled in London; a rosé made with Bacchus grapes grown in Hampshire and Herefordshire; and a pet nat made with British grapes as our sparkling white. Innovative, seriously drinkable and they go great with a pizza.
New on the menu this month is an extra addition to our expanding dough ball menu: our homemade take on the inside of a Kinder Bueno. Served with our piping hot, fluffy dough balls, we supply a pot of the sweet, hazelnutty goo for dipping.
Talking of dipping, we’re now offering pots of deliciousness for your crispy crusts: homemade aioli, garlic butter and tahini are perfect for ensuring you make use of every crumb. And there’s a special chilli sauce coming soon, made by a local food business that makes the best chilli jam we’ve ever tasted.
And there’s more coming soon! We’re about to launch our international drug store and dessert milkshake menu, as well as a GB•PIZZA•CO branded beer! It’s all go!
- July 10, 2020 -
GB•PIZZA•CO reopening, 17th July 2020
We are please and confident to confirm we have complied with the government guidelines for the management of risk of Covid-19. We have carried out Covid-19 risk assessments which have been shared with all staff. We have additional cleaning & handwashing procedures in place according to current guidelines. We have taken reasonable steps to maintain a safe distance in the workplace in line with current guidelines & where staff & guests cannot maintain social distance, we are doing everything we can to provide generic drugs online and minimise the risk. All staff have carried out online and in-person training to ensure our already-high standards of cleaning and safety meet and go beyond government guidelines.
- All staff have completed a return to work questionnaire before restarting work after the lockdown to include Covid-19 references.
- Prior to arrival at work staff will complete a Covid-19 Daily Health Check & act accordingly.
- Once they arrive at work all staff will have a temperature check logged. There will be hand sanitiser available for immediate use when they enter the building.
- All staff will change as soon as they arrive at work into uniforms or appropriate workwear & outer clothing will be stored in lockers.
- Staff will wear visors at all times, adhering to the procedure for putting on a face mask & will wear gloves appropriately.
- Staff will wash their hands for 20 seconds at least every 30 minutes.
- Disposable gloves will be used for preparation & cleaning tasks.
- There will be no physical contact such as handshakes permitted.
- All suppliers will be asked to provide their procedures relating to Covid-19.
- Deliveries will be processed in a designated area by staff members who will wear gloves for the duration. They will then remove gloves & wash hands.
- Tables will be set using gloves & face masks.
- All menus will be single use only. Any menus previously used will be disposed of.
- Guests will be asked to strictly adhere to their booking times to ensure social distancing guidelines can be met.
- There will be sanitiser available to use when guests arrive.
- There will be no physical contact such as handshakes permitted.
- Hand sanitiser & sanitising wipes will be available for all guests & staff throughout the restaurant.
- After any interaction with guests which results in possible contaminated contact, such as clearing plates & glasses, staff are required to wash/sanitise their hands.
- Guests will be asked to check with staff if the bathrooms are free to use.
- PDQ machines & bill folders will be sanitised before & after use.
- When guests have finished their meal they may be asked to wait while other guests leave the restaurant to help with maintaining social distancing.
- June 29, 2020 -
We are pleased to let you know that we will be reopening GB•PIZZA•CO Margate on Friday 17th July at midday, for dining-in and for takeaways. Tables must be booked in advance and takeaway orders dialled through in advance and collected from outside of the restaurant. You can reach the team by phone from the 17th: 01843 297700. If you’d like to book a table in the meantime, please email Lisa: firstname.lastname@example.org
We have been working really hard whilst our doors have been closed, to maintain and enhance GB•PIZZA•CO’s safe environment for our staff and customers alike – as well as making sure that your GB experience is as normal and pleasurable as possible. As well as regular deep cleans throughout the lockdown, we have been working to government guidelines for our reopening – you can read these in full here:
As well as adhering to the guidelines, we have worked to buy xanax legally online with independent cleaning experts and health and safety advisors, as well as liaising with fellow restaurateurs, to ensure we always go above and beyond what is expected of us as a business.
This work has included a thorough risk assessment of the premises and our work practices, and implementing new cleaning plans that go beyond our already high standards of hygiene.
Other measures we have implemented in order to mitigate risk include:
- We have reduced the number of covers in the restaurant, from 38 to 20.
- We will be taking bookings for groups of up to 6 people from a maximum of two households, as per the government guidelines.
- We will stagger the arrival time of bookings.
- We will take your contact name and number when booking (bookings can be taken up to 30 minutes before your chosen dining time, if we have availability) in order to comply with the government’s track and trace system. Your name and number will be stored for 21 days, in case we are alerted of anyone developing symptoms at the time of your booking.
- All of our staff have been trained in best practice for cleaning and hygiene, both at home and at work, and have signed a return to work document. They have also all completed online Covid-19 courses.
- Our staff have been trained by a professional cleaning company to make sure they are confident with any new cleaning methods we have to employ.
- The restaurant has been treated with a food-safe fogging anti-viral system, and we have a certificate to show this work has been carried out.
- Our staff have been asked to change their arrival-for-work routine, to make sure they wear face masks to and from work; change into their work uniform on-site (this uniform will have been brought to work in a sealed bag); and they will be asked questions by their line manager before every shift starts regarding their wellbeing and health.
Thank you for your continued support. It’s been an incredibly tough few months and we’ve missed you all so much. You wanna pizza us? See you on the 17th July.
- October 14, 2019 -
To celebrate the achievement of our seventh birthday, I thought I’d post the text version of a talk I did this month for Ladies Of Restaurants. It was an amazing opportunity to think about my life in the world of hospitality, the journey so far, with its end destination of Margate, and some of the madness that occurred to get here.
Ladies of Restaurants, Tuesday 1st October 2019, Hantverk & Found, Margate
I feel like a complete fraud writing this talk for Ladies of Restaurants. Not only because I’ve never classed myself as a lady, but also because of my accidental tourist status in the world of hospitality. And especially as I know that this talk will have to be delivered in front of Kate from Hantverk & Found, Natalia from Cafe Barletta (and founder of Ladies of Restaurants) and Simona from Bottega Carruso. Three women who have helped make Margate a serious food destination.
I’m a pretend restaurant owner, you see.
So I used to be a journalist and my career took place in the golden age of The Blag. I’ve been lucky to eat in some of the world’s best restaurants. Back in those glory days of travel journalism, I was flown all over the world to eat and to stay in luxury hotels. I was in my late 20s and early 30s and I was living the dream.
I’ve owned my own business since the age of 26 – firstly in marketing, branding and publishing, and then the strange, unexpected move into hospitality. In my life as an entrepreneur, I’ve lost everything, twice. And not just my business – and therefore my income – but also my home.
After the global crash in 2008, the publishing company I owned in Spain with my former partner, Rachel, went under. Like thousands of business owners on the Costa del Sol, we were left penniless. Along with that came another bombshell: Rachel was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumour. One specialist gave her five years, if she was lucky; another shone a brighter beam of hope, but still wouldn’t talk about more than a decade.
We limped back to the UK, homeless, penniless, hopeless, where she underwent two rounds of brain surgery. I went to work at ITV and while she was recovering, Rachel took a part-time job in a pub in Vauxhall so she could learn how to cook commercially – something she’d always dreamed of doing.
If you’re lucky – really lucky – a lack of hope means you have the balls to be a little more reckless, to take risks that perhaps you wouldn’t normally take, because… well, f*ck it, right?
Our first hospitality venture was a pub on the Wiltshire/Somerset borders near the Longleat estate. Something I had never contemplated doing – thanks to me not particularly liking people, not being a natural front of house host (I do not and will not suffer fools – especially fools who drink 10 pints of ale every night, moaning about their wives, their work, their family…), and also being the world’s worst waitress – an inherent clumsiness does not a good server make. My customers will attest to this. But for Rachel, it was a dream of hers, so we dove into the new venture with enthusiasm from her and scepticism from me.
We ran the pub, which also had five boutique B&B rooms – as tenants of the Wadworth brewery – for just over two years. A filthy old country pub when we found it (the previous tenants would mop the carpet in the restaurant on a Sunday evening, host heavy metal pool competition nights, and serve beer that required mastication), we stripped it out and Farrow and Balled it. We employed a lovely local chap who tended our kitchen garden and helped me learn the joys of owning chickens, and we tried to ingratiate ourselves – unsuccessfully – into the village community. My morning walks with Henry, my Great Dane, saw villagers crossing the street to avoid us both.
In that time we won Gastropub Pub of the Year (an award we failed to collect as we’d got the day of the glitzy ceremony in London wrong) and were runners-up as UK Food Pub of the Year. We also had a successful visit from the man from Michelin – who our waitress mistakenly assumed was a tyre salesman and tried to shoo him away after his lunch. He was amused. I was not.
It was the stuff of dreams for Rachel: just-shot venison turning up at the kitchen door; rabbits delivered by our gardener; seasonal produce pulled out of our own earth each and every morning; freshly-laid eggs; grass-fed beef that we could hear munching in the fields behind the pub’s garden.
But it was two torturous years of graft, heartache and struggles. As we became more successful, the brewery put up our prices – as a tied pub, we had to buy all booze from them. Working from 6am until 11pm, six days a week, took its toll.
I loathed it. And after two years, Rachel’s brain tumour reappeared. As our margins were so tight, we couldn’t afford to employ a chef of her calibre to replace her inevitable four months out of the business.
So, we eventually walked away, leaving our cash investment in the pub’s refurb locked into the property.
I swore I’d never work in hospitality again.
Rachel had a third round of brain surgery, followed by a gruelling course of radiotherapy. After a few months back in London for her treatment, we moved to the Cotswolds to live with her aunt, so she could recover. I got a job first as a food buyer for a National garden centre chain, and then as a content writer for a media agency; after months of recovery, Rachel got a job in a local pub.
My Nan died during this time, leaving me a bit of cash.
One evening after my Nan’s funeral, visiting my parents, I was attempting to convince my father to go out for dinner – a man who is a fan of “simple fayre”, with money spent in restaurants being money wasted. Finally he decided on “thin and crispy pizza cooked in a wood-fired oven like they have in Italy.” He had never been to Italy. Still has never been to Italy. So I googled “wood-fired pizza Birmingham” and this is a sign of those times (it must have been February 2012): not a single result came back. Apart from one, on ebay: a decrepit German army bus with a wood-fired oven retrofitted into the back of it. It cost the same as the lump of cash my Nan had left me and was for sale in the next town. We went to view it the next day – god knows why. Held together with rust, gaffer tape and string, it was a no-go – literally. But it got our brains whirring.
A few weeks were spent researching the concept of a mobile food business. Mobile pizza trucks were few and far between then and we felt as though we’d discovered something new enough that we could make it our own.
I found a bloke in Telford who made portable wood-fired ovens, made out of fibreglass and clay, we bought a rusty old 1974 VW Campervan, and the Cotswold Pizza Company was born. We sold our first pizza at the Moreton-in-Marsh Farmers Market – the only one we sold that day, the rest were enthusiastically snapped up by Rachel’s family.
The work for each event was all-consuming: endless dough making and sauce prep. Loading the van for the event; unloading it at the event; making the pizzas; loading the van back up to take everything home, but having to wait for the oven to cool down; unloading it at home to clean down the van and all of the gear.
After a weekend festival was rained off in Bath, losing us the significant, non-refundable pitch fee we’d paid (such are the joy of mobile catering), we started to look at other ways to run the fledgling business.
And so, to Margate.
Margate had always been a favourite day trip destination when we were in London. Every time we visited, we met another cool person doing exciting things – Stuart at the old and much-missed Fort’s Cafe was one of the first. And the lovely Jean from BeBeached, who was so generous with her help and support.
In early 2012, after I found a small unit to rent on the Harbour Arm, plus a parking space next to it for the van, we moved. Research showed that there would be enough outdoor events in the spring and summer months to sustain a business.
As we paid our deposit and took charge of the keys for the little lock-up, the estate agent casually mentioned that the unit had its own alcohol licence – and that if we wanted to operate out of the unit, there was space that we could use outside for tables and chairs. It was June 2012, the start of the Olympic summer – although summer may be a term too far.
The town’s calendar was packed with events, including art events along the Harbour, meaning, we hoped, a steady flow of potential customers.
Using social media – just Twitter and Facebook back then – we amassed a decent following before we opened on a Friday night in June. Nearly 100 people were queuing. Our four picnic tables were full; Henry was joined in the Campervan by waiting customers, and we panicked. Rachel rolled and stretched the dough and topped it; I took orders, cooked the pizzas, sliced them, and took money. With just two of us and 100 people waiting, we needed to rethink our order of service and fast.
Customers were told to help themselves to drinks (I didn’t have enough pairs of hands!); they were asked to collect their own napkins; come to the bar to order and collect their pizza once their name was called. The pub, amongst many things, had taught us that any hospitality business that was staff heavy wasn’t going to work for us. The “fast casual” concept hadn’t even been born yet – we did what we did through necessity, a lack of capital, and the scars of being burned by the pub and its need for high-skilled, highly-paid chefs.
The summer of 2012 was an historical one. Margate saw the Olympic torch arrive, carried by Tracey Emin in a very ill-fitting bra and a portrait of the Queen at the Turner drew record crowds, and there was a buzz about the town – not just from the people living in it and visiting it, but also in the national press. By the end of July, we had employed our first part-time member of staff, and each weekend we were serving hundreds of pizzas in the hot sunshine, sideways rain, freezing drizzle and gale-force wind.
By August, we’d put down a deposit on a restaurant unit across the water, on Marine Drive. Back in 2012, the stretch of handsome buildings that sit on the seafront, lay dark at night. No Glass Jar, Sands Hotel, Buoy & Oyster, Dory’s or Bottle Shop. Just the Rock Shop in the summer, Primark in the day, and Rokka when it could be bothered to open.
Our site used to be a Pizza Hut and the small area we rented was its basement and kitchen. With a tiny budget, we set about trying to turn it into a space that people would want to eat in. We had the views – that was for sure – and enough room for a small, wood-fired oven – the majority of our budget being blown on extending the oven’s flue through six storeys of an abandoned building.
In the weeks in the run-up to our opening, notes were pushed under our door from people living locally, kindly letting us know of our stupidity and impending failure and doom. We also forged friendships and met some incredible people who supported our crazy venture.
When we opened in a cold October, and when an even colder November arrived, including snow in December, there were sometimes hours before a person would even walk past our door. I began to question breaking my own rule of never, ever working in hospitality again. I had to question whether Rachel’s illness had made us pro-risk or perhaps just reckless?
In 2013, after a very shaky, terrifying first six months, the reviews in the national press started to happen thanks to the incredible Marina O’Louglin, who should be given the keys to this fine town.
So this month, GB Pizza celebrates its seventh year of trading. In that time we’ve had:
- a two-year stint in London (successful on paper, unsuccessful in every other way);
- opened our first franchise restaurant in Didsbury in South Manchester;
- received lauded reviews in every single national newspaper and national food magazine;
- been featured in every edition of The Good Food Guide and Harden’s since we opened;
- parted ways, quite magnificently, with a toxic investor (whose nickname for me was the “foul-mouthed one”);
- sold over three quarters of a million pizzas;
- been named, in various features, as one of the UK’s best pizza restaurants;
- garnered an enormous following on social media for my witterings and rants, and photos of dogs and pizza and sunsets;
- almost lost everything, again;
- have made life-long friends through the customers that have come through our doors;
- felt out-pourings of love for mad-ass ideas like giving away free pizza for an entire week to all emergency services staff after the Manchester and Borough Market bombings;
- supported a plethora of local charities, with raffle prizes, as well as our charity pizza;
- supported talented, hardworking local suppliers;
- met some incredible people whose businesses we adore and support;
- nurtured some incredible staff members
As you probably all know, we also lost our co-founder, Rachel, who, after a fierce fight, finally succumbed to that f*cking nasty brain tumour after nearly 15 years since diagnosis. It’s been a tough two years for the GB•PIZZA•CO family, but we’ve come out fighting.
So, what next?
More sites – if this isn’t the time to expand, embrace this crazy little pizza joint and run with it, then I don’t know what is. It’s been hideous, heartbreaking, life-changing, brilliant, life-affirming, tedious and empowering. As a woman in business, it’s made me realise what I can achieve – I multi-task, I get shit done, I’m a girly swot and l learn more about my industry every single day, Im inspired by other women in hospitality, and I’m never afraid or too egotistical to ask where can i buy xanax online and how something works or why something went wrong.
So, seven years of making pizza, a relatively new-found gluten allergy (the irony is not lost), a sommelier course set to start at the end of the year and a ferocious need to succeed – for the sake of everything my little pizza joint stands for – whilst I never want to work in hospitality again, I’m going to see this through to the end. Whatever that might be.
- March 13, 2019 -
… Looking for a unique way to cater your wedding? Want award-winning food without the enormous price tag? Our new venture rolls out this summer, offering wood-fired pizzas to festivals, parties, events, commercial launches and weddings. Our bespoke trailer, with its fitted wood-fired oven, will serve up our restaurant-quality, critically acclaimed pizza to you and your guests.
Want to know how to get prescribed xanax online or more? Drop us a line for prices per head. Launching July 2019 in South-East England.
- November 22, 2018 -
Already a firm favourite in South Manchester, GB•PIZZA•CO is at the heart of the community it serves. Open seven days a week, the team have been receiving accolades from local food writers and publications in the short 12 months they’ve been open. Serving wood-fired pizza topped with British (and especially northern) ingredients, plus locally-made cakes, locally-roasted coffee and even apple juice made with apples grown just a couple of miles down the road, GB•PIZZA•CO Didsbury is hugely grateful for the support they’ve received in the last 12 months and learn how to get a prescription for ambien online.
Happy Birthday, Grant, Kally and the GB•PIZZA•CO Didsbury team!
- November 22, 2018 -
We’ve been in The Good Food Guide every single year since we opened our doors on Margate’s seafront in 2012. We strive for quality and we seek out the best ambien online consultation and British ingredients to top our wood-fired pizzas. To be featured again is such a huge honour – something we don’t take lightly, especially as we live in a town with so many great independent restaurants.
Thanks to our amazing team who work hard and passionately, seven days a week.