Ei Group, YCE Catering Equipment and LLK combine a slice of expertise each to develop a perfect pizza package.

Oldham based Pizza Specialists, Linda Lewis Kitchens and Leeds based Catering Equipment supplier, YCE have joined forces to help the largest pub company in the UK, Ei Group, with its new concept, which includes the provision of ovens and specific kitchen strategies.

The Group created its ‘Barrel Top’ concept to give their estate of some 4,600 pubs an opportunity to generate sales from pizza. Specialist support will also be offered to guarantee publicans are fully proficient in all aspects of developing and running a commercially attractive pizza operation.

Ei group approached YCE with their fantastic franchise idea, after hearing about their reputation in the area, asking them to act as consultants to help them develop this model, in readiness to launch into their business. Their main idea was to stand out from the crowd by targeting the casual eating market with their estate using a tiered approach on range and price.

YCE knew there was only one company to support Ei Group in their mission, which was LLK and their Cuppone range. YCE recommended that the first stage was naturally to test Ei Group’s pizza recipes in the Cuppone Ovens, approved by LLK’s saying ‘try before you buy’. Hence, a trial day was set up at the LLK demonstration kitchen, with their Development Chef Fabio, to include the testing of specific ovens, to see which would suit their needs. Following testing, the Group knew the Cuppone ovens were unquestionably a perfect fit, and they consequently launched the franchise proposal to their Food Council, using LLK demonstration kitchen facilities again.

The Cuppone ovens that have been carefully chosen are the Tiziano Pizza Oven (LLKTZ6201S) and the Paulo Pizza Oven (LLKPAULO4+4). The single-deck shallow-depth electric Tiziano due to its compact structure and its flexible capacity features, including its stacking ability. The bigger oven, the Paulo, is needed for the higher volume proposals and was chosen because of its success and reputation with other pizza brands.

“The humble Pizza is going from strength to strength with no end in sight to its popularity. Everyone seems to know what makes a good pizza and the UK is in love with the Italian dish, with newer tastes and flavours proposed all the time. The fully prepared frozen pizza is no longer acceptable or desirable, the more popular choice now is the fresh pizzas. The pub industry has to keep up with the trend, by introducing the addition of stone base deck pizza ovens to kitchen proposals,” said Ei Group’s Head of Food Paul Farr.

“The modification of adding pizza ovens is where Linda Lewis Kitchens have come into their own. LLK have immersed themselves in all things pizza related, meaning they are the one stop shop specialists. Whether you need: dough mixers, dough presses, ovens or light equipment they have it covered, educating us all on the best ways to create and deliver the most successful pizza offerings.”