The group has invested c£850k in PizzaBuzz to create both the brand and the restaurant, which can be scaled to suit different sized restaurant spaces from 950 – 3500sq ft.
Barnaby Meredith, who heads up the Meredith Group told BigHospitality's sister publication M&C Report he is launching the restaurant in response to shifting consumer tastes away from pubs towards fast casual restaurants and his vision is to open more restaurants after establishing the first.
The 85-cover restaurant will cater to the highly dense office population in and around the Alphabeta development on Worship Street, which is being redeveloped as a hub for creative businesses and office space with retail units attached.
PizzaBuzz will include a salad bar and a juice bar as well as serving pizzas made from five different bases, with toppings such as applewood-smoked bacon, rock shrimp, white figs, spinach and asparagus with speciality cheeses, including taleggio, buffalo mozzarella and fontina.
The drinks menu includes coffees, sodas, on-tap wine, Prosecco and local beers. The restaurant is planning to add its own range of ice creams made from a choice of cow, goat and almond milk.
Meredith said the menu has been developed with food intolerances in mind, particularly the ice cream which will be sold at Meredith’s pubs as well as at PizzaBuzz. The organic ice cream will be sold in 120g tubs as a wholesale venture to allow people to enjoy non-dairy alternatives: “People are becoming more aware of what they are putting in their bodies and what they eat.”
Meredith said his pubs, The Only Running Footman pub in Mayfair and The Portman at Marylebone, are trading very well and had their best year yet in 2014.
“We have hopefully got a new pub in the pipeline in 2016 so we are looking to expand the pubs as well.”
The group has identified a site in central London and is aiming to make an acquisition for next year.
Of the new restaurant, Meredith said: “The Alphabeta building is rapidly becoming internationally recognised as the centre for creative and commercial innovation in London and we are excited to be part of this process. Our wood-fired pizzas will offer a quick, delicious slice of awesomeness throughout the day and we can’t wait to open our doors.”
Guests at PizzaBuzz will be able to pay via an app that can also be used to order additional food and drink to the table, as well as a mobile-friendly website for convenient delivery and take-away ordering.
PizzaBuzz will open 7am to 11pm Monday to Thursday; and 7am to midnight Friday and Saturday.
The Alphabeta building will include 20,000sq ft of retail and restaurant space.