We at Pizzaiolo believe that the simple act of feeding people is at the core of what it is to be human. We focus on the ritual of taking life from the world around us and presenting it to you to sustain your own life. We believe that taking part in this ritual is vital and deserving of the utmost repsect to the plants and animals we choose to source and to you, our friends, family and customers. We also believe that this ritual is one that all Americans took part in until about seventy five years ago. There is nothing fancy about it, in fact its pretty much how we have all been eating for hundreds of years. In accordance with these simple ideas we have come up with a few basic rules we try to follow. Whenever we can, about 98% of the time, we buy only locally grown, organic, seasonal meat and produce. We buy from small farmers we know and love, people we eat with, drink with, and share our lives with. We buy whole animals from ranchers we know and trust: We buy organic flour, milled in Oakland by people who bring their children to Pizzaiolo for dinner. We change the menu every day to reflect the offerings of these remarkable local food purveyors in their freshest most beautiful form.
When the day is done, the thinking that seems to matter most is that we are taking part in a web of human interaction. The food you eat at Pizzaiolo is 100% down-home human-made. It stands in the face of the overly commodified food systems that have taken over the American consciousness since the industrial revolution. It is grown, cooked, and served by people who live right here, who raise their children here, right now.
As the owner of Pizzaiolo, I have made a conscious choice to push this human element as far as I can. I live in the apartment above the restaurant with my two children. I have taken the normal dichotomy of “work life” and “real life” and distilled them into one. My life is my life. I can’t abuse the people I work with or my customers because they are the people in my life every day, all day. As strange as it may sound, taking this step has been one of the most liberating things I have ever done. One life is much easier to live than two. The people I love and care about are all around me, and the people I need to be accountable to are right here, in my face every day. I can see the effect of my decisions all around me; I can see the effect of my labor, my passion and my love, right in front of my face. My children watch me work, they have relationships with my co-workers, they are learning how to live in the world by watching the layers of human interaction that happens all around them and so I am forced, everyday, to live with a level of integrity and integration that is hard to come by in this day and age. Hopefully all of this is reflected in the total experience of Pizzaiolo, from the food to the lighting, to the music, to the satisfaction of leaving filled on every level.