As part of Best Restaurant Week (yes, we totally made it up), we’re featuring stories from some of our restaurant partners. Check out our blog Nov 1–6 for new stories every day, and use code BESTWEEK for a $0 delivery fee on your order subtotaled $30+ all week.
Fist of Flour’s hand tossed, wood-fired pizzas are served up fresh out of a mobile food truck that travels around the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2009, Owner James Whitehead decided to build his very own pizza oven in his backyard, dedicating himself to perfecting the skill of producing the perfect gourmet pie. His passion came out of his frustration with a 10+ year career in graphic design, and a hankering for good pizza.
Fist of Flour’s first truck was founded in March 2011, debuting at the Oakland Art murmur in April 2011 and selling out of 77 pizzas that night. From then on, James knew he was on the right track, but found himself scaling quite the learning curve as a new restaurant owner:
“I got into a private catering kitchen in November of 2011, and we had the space to expand, and do bigger and better things. We were gaining in popularity and were selling out all the time. By October of 2012, I felt it was time to get a new oven built, one that could keep up with the demand for our product. By this time I now had 5–6 people working for me, we had two trailers and were selling pizza all over the Bay and beyond. […]I think by fall of 2013, I really felt that we knew what we were doing, and headed in the right direction”.
The business now consists of 2 trailers and a brick and mortar, with the restaurant continuing to travel around the city and cater events. Caviar delivers from the brick and mortar location, with Margherita, Classico, and Italiano pies ranking as top choices for delivery.
With his love for pizza, you may be surprised at the one menu item James is always willing to try:
“I would have to say meatballs. In any form, hands down. We make ours by hand from scratch, and I’m always doing research on other chef’s meatballs. There has to be enough bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, and eggs to keep them moist through a pre cook and reheat process. Ample sauce should also be employed so I can use the bread to sop up the extras. My favorite preparation is putting the meatballs in a cast iron or clay oven dish, layered with tomato sauce and shaved parmesan, and baked in the wood fired oven till melted and crispy. Done, all I need is a fork”.