Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Finally - Gluten Free pizza in Atlanta!

Most of us agree that the number one thing we miss is being able to have pizza - either in a restaurant or for take-out/delivery. Yes, I make delicious pizza often with crust from The Grainless Baker, but I'd like the option of having one I don't have to make myself. It's true that a few lucky people are able to do this, but only in 1/4 of the states in the US is it possible. And in some of those states, there is only one town with gluten free pizza. So when I heard of a magical place called Pizza Fusion, in South FL that offered gluten free organic pizza, I tried to figure out a way to get down there to try it. That was over a year ago and I still haven't been but now I'm getting something even better. Pizza Fusion is opening in Atlanta this Fall! I've absolutely died and gone to gluten free Heaven....or at least I'm going soon!

Recently, I got the chance to interview Jeff Melnick - owner of the Atlanta location of Pizza Fusion opening soon in the Buckhead area. The company is so committed to being 'green', they only deliver pizzas in hybrid cars! But obviously, the best part (and only reason I'd be writing) about Pizza Fusion is that they make gluten free pizza, for those of us that large pizza chains choose to ignore. After seeing the You Tube videos about Pizza Fusion's gluten free pizza, I was sold. Any pizza that is good enough for picky gluten free teens (and even glutenoids) is surely good enough for me!

If you're familiar with this company, you know that they offer gluten crust pizzas as well. But as you'll see here, Pizza Fusion is doing everything possible to ensure their gluten free pizzas are just that - gluten free. Jeff's answers to my questions are shown in italicized text.


You know Jeff, a lot of people with Celiac disease or gluten intolerance react to the tiniest bit of gluten. I heard that Pizza Fusion has a unique way of dealing with the cross contamination issue. Can you explain that process to us?

We prepare a batch of our gluten-free dough every day, morning and evening. Additionally, we instruct our staff to remember how important it is to avoid contaminating the dough with any gluten product. We also inspect our equipment and remove any traces of regular flour before starting the batch. In addition, our gluten-free recipe is proprietary and we follow it exactly. We take the preparation of our gluten-free products very seriously. Our gluten-free pizza and products are prepared in a designated “gluten-free” area on a clean and sanitized cutting board.

Also, we take extra steps to ensure that the utensils that come in contact with the pizza are sanitized and kept separate from the non gluten-free pizzas. We have designated the top shelf of our oven for gluten-free pizzas only. In other words, there is never any cross contamination between the gluten-free pizzas and the non gluten-free pizzas.

Is it true that you'll be offering gluten free beer there too? If so, what brands are you stocking?

Yes, we'll be stocking Redbridge gluten free beer (by Anheiser Busch) for our gluten free patrons to enjoy.

Someone from Florida mentioned that your brownies are gluten free and very delicious. Is it true that you only offer one (gluten free) brownie to all your customers?

Yes, we offer only one brownie. It's vegan and gluten-free and they ARE very delicious.

Needless to say - the gluten free community in Atlanta is excited to finally get gluten free pizza in our area! When is the estimated opening date for your Buckhead location?

We are shooting for a soft opening of September 9th, 2008 and we look forward to serving our gluten free friends. Keep an eye out for grand opening news...! We also plan to open two additional locations in 2009 in Vinings and Midtown/Edgewood.

Thanks so much for your time Jeff. We can NOT wait until you open here!


So, there you have it folks. I hope everyone will give Pizza Fusion a chance to prove they care about making us safe, gluten free food. This company takes the gluten free market seriously and cares about courting us more than any other chain with a gluten free menu, that I've worked with anyway. We've got to support companies like this or else we'll never get to where we want (and deserve) to be in the US, regarding gluten free dining. There are gluten free, dairy free options here as well. Check out the complete allergen information from Pizza Fusion here.

Pizza Fusion
2233 Peachtree Road, Suite M
Atlanta, GA 30309 / 404-351-9334
Jeffrey Melnick
`Saving the Earth, One Pizza at a Time`

Update: check out the lastest press release from Pizza Fusion!

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