Meet Harris, keeper of the dough secrets

That’s Harris above. I’m sat in a Shoreditch coffee shop writing this newsletter, a flat white sipping cliché.The caffeine’s required though, there’s a lot to catch up on. Our last newsletter came out just after we’d returned from our US pizza road trip. Time dilates in wedding and festival land, the long evenings, cheery customers and late night drives home blurring into one another. Flicking back through the calendar we’ve been busy.

Did we even mention we were finalists in the BBC Food and Farming Awards?

We made the last three in the street food category, which with less than a year’s trading under our belt was more than we could ever ask for. We got to meet some amazing people, Giorgio Locatelli had a play on the oven and has even taught me the ‘poor pizzaiolo hands’.

DO

I struggle to describe the DO Lectures, an ‘ideas festival’ comes up short. It’s the moments around the campfire, the chat with the speaker you admire on a crazed early morning run / swim, which make it special. But special it is and we were lucky enough to be there. Bertha did us proud through a pizza workshop, two hundred plus bread rolls and a hundred odd pizzas, she likes to think of herself as official oven supplier to DO 2015. Look out for our article on dough in the latest yearbook.

Blogatron

Would be the name of a Transformer which sporadically morphs into blogs and we’ve just about kept them ticking over. If you’re that way inclined you’ll find introductions to starting your own sourdough mother, tales of my paper bag collectioninterviewsvideos (the same as above), and a rant on doing things right the first time – 10 Bertha’s points to anyone who clicks through to all of them, redeemable in our restaurant.

…once we finally find a site.

I promise you we’ve been looking. I roam the streets, searching for advertising boards and vacant plots. We’ve a crack team of Friends of Bertha’s – we love you guys – sending us tips on where might be available. Feel free to join this team, come one come all, a shedload of Bertha’s points available to whoever finds us our home. We’ll get there.

So where can we find you now?

Well since you ask we’ll be at BrewDog Bristol this Saturday, 15th August and Moor Beer Taproom the following week, 22nd August.What’s not to love about pizza and beer?

 

 

It’s quite likely a dog’s peed here

Residential North London isn’t the easiest area to cure an oven. I’m sat writing this while tending to the fire. And what a fire. The Dragon Oven team have done us proud. Setting that first match to the inside of my first car was still pretty surreal but with a month or so of regular fires required to drive out the water there was no hanging about.

So what have we been up to?

Well needless to say the last couple of months have flown by. I’ve now quit my job and the transition from banker to baker is underway. We spent sometime with the Honest Crust guys helping them out on their stall and can’t have been completely hopeless as they floated the idea of nipping off to the pub and leaving us to it a couple of times.

We officially live in a pizzeria

We’ve spent a lot of time ordering equipment and boy do you need a lot of equipment. There’s no hiding the fact we’re launching a pizza business now, but unexpected perks include giant domino rally.

Meeting suppliers

The real joy comes from meeting suppliers though and we’ve already teamed up with some amazing talent. The Cobble Lane lads really are meat meastros and it was during one particularly gluttonous tasting session where a smile was etched onto my face on realising that this actually counted as work.
We’re hoping to source our tomatoes from the Isle of Wight, not only are these closer to home but they taste incredible. It’s a learning curve for all of us, their largest passata container was previously 500ml so we’ll be upscaling somewhat, but we’ve no doubt all the work now will pay off and the plan’s to host a pizza party on their farm to celebrate the collaboration.

Bristol Bound

We’re now officially members of BEATS, the coolest sounding organisation which has ever let me amongst its ranks. Bristol Eats or BEATS is Bristol’s street food collective, an affable bunch focussed on bringing the best food, music and art to Bristol’s streets.
Whilst last in town I also got to meet up with the team behind Bristol’s St Mungo’s homeless centre. Our first event in Bristol is looking to be linked to their centre and we’re particularly excited about a partnership whereby unused dough balls from the markets would go to make bread for the homeless.

Where to find us

Our soft launch at the Arch last Friday was awesome and we sold out within a couple of hours. The main event will be a couple of weeks later on 25th April linking in with their last Friday of the month competition so why not come along for a climb and a pizza. If any more incentive’s required both nights tie into their charity push and we’ll be donating £1 from every pizza sold to the charity of the month.
After that it’s to the hills, to a wedding half way up the Old Man of Coniston. I will be engaging diff lock and low range gearbox purely because I can as we trundle up the track to the venue. Keep an eye out for pictures, we can’t wait to see the Landy churning out pizza with views of the Lake District stretching below.
The fire’s building, watch it grow…