Eric Snaith, owner of Norfolk-based Eric’s Fish & Chips, has opened a pizzeria in a yurt next door to his fish and chip restaurant at Drove Orchards in Thornham.
Eric’s Pizza seats 65 - currently 45 with social distancing measures - and serves rustic pizzas alongside antipasti, charcuterie and homemade pickles and preserves. The menu includes a range of classics such as margherita and three cheese as well as a spicy spreadable salami, a vegetarian option topped with mushrooms, shiitake and rocket, plus a vegan margherita all ranging between £8 and £9. Gluten free bases are also available.
The dough is made from scratch and hand-stretched before topping and cooking in a wood-fired oven in front of customers.
Customers can order from Eric’s Pizza and Eric’s Fish & Chips and still sit together.
Talking of his venture into pizzas, Eric comments: “It’s another food I love and, like fish and chips, it’s a real family favourite. We’ve approached it in exactly the same way as we have with fish and chips - quality ingredients, keeping it simple, quick and good value.”
Serving between 250-300 pizzas a day, trade has been busier than Eric anticipated, despite the current circumstances. “We’re a little bit busier than we thought we would be, which is great right now," he says. "It’s not easy opening a new business in the current climate but we wanted to try and get some of the summer trade and, actually, the coast is really busy at the moment.
"Coronavirus has certainly made things more challenging, but we’re glad we have opened because if we had have put it off we wouldn’t have known how long we would be waiting for.”
Although there are no initial plans to roll out Eric’s Pizza to further sites, expansion is on the cards, with Eric adding: “Never say never, but it’s not the intention. The expansion next year will more likely involve putting in an independent takeaway oven so we can increase the capacity for takeaway pizzas and then just creating a bit more outside seating.”