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June 24, 2018

Pizzeria Beddia owner reveals more details, influences for his shop's big, new location

"To be perfectly honest, I don’t think I’m gonna cook one pizza."

Food & Drink Pizza
06232015_PizzeriaBeddia Pizzeria Beddia/pizzeriabeddia.wordpress.com

Pizza at Pizzeria Beddia at 115 E. Girard Ave.

It's been nearly three months since Pizzeria Beddia, the home of the "Best Pizza in America," closed its doors to give owner Joe Beddia some much needed R&R before the shop's new concept gets fully underway.

So far pizza fans have been given meager details on the new space: it will be bigger, with actual seats (unlike the original location) and will be a bit easier to order from -- Beddia himself won't be making every single pie and capping the count at 40 every night.

After a recent trip through Europe, fueling jealousy-inducing Instagram posts, Beddia has returned to Philly and spoke with writer and Temple alum Michael Ferrence to talk about the new shop and some of his influences. Ferrence shared the Q&A on Medium Saturday.

Beddia spoke about his start in the industry, which began as a brewer at Stoudts in his early twenties, and why Beddia, now 41, was ready for a change after five years of crafting pies in Fishtown.

Beddia said he still in talks with the architect to go over development and construction, making the new shop's opening "still a while out."

"There's gonna be people making pizza, which when I started I was completely opposed to, but over the course of five years, it was really hard," Beddia said in the interview.

"I think if I started when I was younger it would have been a different story, but starting at 36 and ending at 41, it was time."

He continued, "To be honest, it's gonna be much larger, we're going from zero to 100 seats so that's kind of crazy."

As previously reported, Beddia is teaming up with the folks behind Suraya, arguably the best new restaurant in Philadelphia right now.

"I’m not going to be cooking all the pizzas. To be perfectly honest, I don’t think I’m gonna cook one pizza," he said.

"It wouldn’t work. The idea is to get people in there and educate them, train them, mentor them, teach them to make good pizza. It was basically this or no pizza for the rest of forever. There was no other option."

Beddia goes on to discuss his friendship with Eric Wareheim, who you may know best as Aziz Ansari's very tall BFF on Netflix's "Master of None," and who has been known to pop up at Pizzeria Beddia every now and again. Wareheim helped coordinate Beddia's trip overseas, which took him to Berlin, Copenhagen, Paris, Lyon, Barcelona, and Formentera, all of which will help influence the new place.

"I feel like it was a great education too. Just learning and tasting and seeing, that’s really what I wanted to bring to the new pizzeria," Beddia said.

"I needed to eat in some of these places and think of ideas. Our new menu is going to be pizza, and there will be some salads and small plates, and that’s it. It’s going to be a pizzeria."

Check out the full interview on Medium.