As you can imagine, January typically is a slow time for the pizza business. Co-owner Adam Goldberg says that last summer he was brainstorming ideas for something to launch the first of the year. Well aware that many customers now are dieting, Goldberg and his business partners (his brothers Scott and Michael) decided to create an extra-thin pizza for their eight area stores. The chain opened its newest location in Santa Monica five weeks ago.
"Your toppings are going to affect the overall calorie count, but what we can promise is, the crust itself is half the dough and therefore half the carb intake from our thin crust," says Goldberg, adding that it's the same dough recipe used for the chain's regular pizza -- only the amount used per pizza is changed.
But can a light-weight crust handle the heft of all our favorite toppings? Goldberg assured us that "you can put on as many toppings as you like and it supports it very well. The fact that it's so thin, it actually gets crispier than our regular pizza. This is something we got really excited about as we were testing it."
We always thought pizza-lovers were pretty evenly divided between those who want to order a deep dish and those who prefer a thin pie. But Goldberg says about 70% of customers opt for thin crust and 30% for thick. In fact, the idea for a thinner, crispier crust came from customers who asked for it. Some of them were inspired when Fresh Brothers came out with a Passover matzah pizza special last year. When the holiday ended, there were people who requested that the cracker-y crust be placed on the menu permanently. Goldberg hopes the new skinny pizza will satisfy these crispy-crust devotees. (And the matzah pizza will remain a once-a-year holiday special.)
The new super-thin pie may also appeal to people from the East Coast who are homesick for New York-style pizza. And before any skeptics can say fuhgeddaaboutit, Goldberg is quick to point out that while the crust edge doesn't have the depth of a true NYC pizza, the interior is the right height.
Mostly, though, the new Fresh Brothers pizza variety is being launched to accommodate "the New Year's resolutions people have set out for themselves, for sure, including myself, by the way."
Goldberg says he eats pizza about 14 times a week: "I rarely ever leave a kitchen or a store I'm visiting without taking a sample of pizza. I call it quality control."
The newest Fresh Brothers location: 1447 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica; (310) 656-6888.