by Laura Steiger, Outreach Team
One of the main missions of Pizza’zza is to source as many local ingredients as possible. “It’s a huge reason why we are in the food business to begin with," said Pizza'zza co-owner Erica Lamson.
Photos by Daisey James.
The Pizza'zza Difference
Erica Lamson knows that she has one of the best jobs possible. Pizza makes people happy, and Erica, along with husband Will Annett, is the co-owner of Pizza’zza, whose scrumptious pizzas spark joy for hungry pizza-lovers.
Along with operating their pizza shops in Fairhaven and on Alabama Hill, plus a food truck, they also sell their delicious frozen pizzas and ginormous ice cream sandwiches to the Co-op (and that makes us happy!). Erica said they were excited to enter a new retail environment, “We can only serve so many people at the restaurants, and this amplifies our mission.”
One of the main missions of Pizza’zza is to source as many local ingredients as possible. “It’s a huge reason why we are in the food business to begin with. So many things are processed and shipped from the far reaches of the world to get here,” said Erica. She sees their business as an intermediary between growers/producers and eaters.
passionate about transforming local ingredients into something delicious, wholesome, and nutritious
Will, an owner since 2006, works with local farmers to source ingredients for the business. Erica came on board in 2016 when they launched the Pizza’zza food truck. With a background as a nutritionist, she is passionate about transforming local ingredients into something delicious, wholesome, and nutritious. The couple has four children, so they also understand the value in helping busy families get something nutritious on the table every night.
Nutritious? Yes, nutritious!
The couple has four children, so they also understand the value in helping busy families get something nutritious on the table every night.
Erica explained that pizza, when done right, is actually a balanced meal. Pizza got a bad rap from decades of commercially produced pizzas overloaded with too much cheese.
Erica’s son, Sid, bites into a slice of pizza from the family business.
With Erica’s background in nutrition, she believes in serving healthful food to her family, and to Pizza’zza customers, and that includes thoughtfully crafted pizzas with a balance of quality local ingredients.
Erica’s pizza of choice also includes plenty of veggies.
Commitment to Local Ingredients
The pizzas at Pizza’zza maintain a proper balance of scratch-made crust and inventive toppings to cheese.
Not just any cheese, either.
Daniel and Nidia Wavrin of Ferndale Farmstead Cheese worked with Pizza’zza to tailor a mozzarella recipe specifically for use on all their pizzas.
Cloud Mountain Farm Center grows the basil and Holmquist Hazelnuts grows the hazelnuts for their in-house hazelnut pesto, made in large batches throughout the summer and frozen for use year round. Several more local farms provide a variety of toppings during the growing season.
Even the flour used in the pizza crusts is 100% local. Cairnspring Mills in Skagit County not only mills all the flour, but 60% of the grain is Skagit-grown and the other 40% is from Washington state growers. Pizza’zza drives to Skagit every 3 to 4 weeks to pick up a pallet of flour, and Erica said, “a pallet is a LOT of flour.”
Let’s not forget about those ice cream cookie sandwiches!
Pizza’zza ice cream sandwiches are baked from scratch with flour from Fairhaven Organic Flour Mills and chocolate chips from Chocolate Necessities, filled with Lopez Island Creamery ice cream, and finished with San Juan Island Sea Salt.
Photo courtesy of Pizza'zza.
Each cookie is a veritable masterpiece created with the best local ingredients and baked fresh in the Pizza’zza kitchen.
The whole grain pastry flour is from Fairhaven Organic Flour Mill. Kevin Buck from Chocolate Necessities supplies the perfect chocolate for the chocolate chip cookies. The yummy ice cream center is from Lopez Island Creamery. And the finishing touch on each ice cream sandwich is a sprinkle of San Juan Island Sea Salt.
The ice cream sandwiches are a big hit
The ice cream sandwiches are a big hit, in the restaurant, on the food truck, and at the Co-op.
They have also become popular at weddings! Guests are thrilled when a fancifully decorated freezer full of ice cream sandwiches arrives at a wedding reception. Not unlike the inner glee children experience when the ice cream truck rolls into the neighborhood.
Made in Fairhaven
All these goodies are made in the Pizza’zza production kitchen in Fairhaven. It takes extra staff time to prep farmer-direct ingredients and make everything from scratch. “It’s more work, but worth it. That is what we’re about and why we do what we do every day. It’s the choice we make in order to promote a linked food system.”
The same growers we’re buying from will sit and have a pizza after their delivery.
One of Erica’s favorite things is the reciprocation inherent in that linked food system. “The same growers we’re buying from will sit and have a pizza after their delivery. Cheryl from Cloud Mountain just brought her mom in for lunch the other day. Anna and Jeff from Osprey Hill Farm will pick up pizzas to take home. Same with Nidia and Daniel from Ferndale Farmstead.”
Stop by soon and pick up a pizza or an ice cream sandwich
The Co-op is happy to be a link in that local food system and to spread the delicious mission of Pizza’zza with our shoppers. Stop by soon and pick up a pizza or an ice cream sandwich—or both—and taste the Pizza’zza difference of local ingredients and handcrafted cooking done right.
Available at the Co-op
Pizza’zza frozen pizzas—
Pizza’zza ice cream sandwiches—
• chocolate chip cookie with vanilla ice cream
• peanut butter cookie with chocolate ice cream
• double chocolate chip cookie with mint chip ice cream