We believe one of the key ingredients to being a successful small business owner is passion. Bill Crawford had a fairly good paying corporate job but yearned for something different. In the fall of 2018, he opened Righteous Slice in a small town called Rexburg in Idaho.
“I just felt so compelled because pizza to me is something that there’s a never-ending opportunity to learn and to be creative and to express who you are. Even though there were lots of people saying, ‘Don’t do it,’ I just felt like it was something that I just had to do before I was done with my life,” said Crawford.
That’s not to say he wasn’t without a rocky start. After opening, Crawford went through about a year of unanticipated growing pains while he and his team finetuned their processes. Thankfully, Righteous Slice attracted a number of raving fans who stuck with them through their rough patch. However, an unexpected world event was the catalyst they needed to truly experience a big change.
“For us, the real savior was, and it sounds a little weird, but the pandemic. We were able to take that time where we got closed down to improve our systems and improve our processes and we added online ordering and delivery,” said Crawford.
“When the restaurant reopened, it just went like gangbusters. At that point, our reputation became good and we became much more accepted in the community. People really, really embraced us after that.”
In 2021, Righteous Slice grew a whopping 43%. Along with that growth came challenges in the back of house, which has limited space. Lucky for him, Crawford was the winner of Cambro’s $3,000 giveaway at the International Pizza Expo in Las Vegas in 2022. Among Crawford’s selections were Camwear® Pans, Camwear Food Storage Box Colanders, a front loading Cam GoBox®, 2 KD Service Carts and personalized Pizza GoBags®.
Crawford uses fresh mozzarella on his pizzas, but their current pans weren’t draining enough of the liquid out, resulting in soggy toppings. Camwear Food Storage Boxes and Colanders were able to make a huge difference.
“We lay the mozzarella balls out and we get a double drain on them. Before, we weren’t getting that with the old metal pans. The drainage is better, which makes a better product for us,” said Crawford.
Have GoBox, will travel! Crawford competes in pizza competitions in the US and Italy and wasn’t satisfied with his current transport products.
“When I traveled to Italy in April, everything was just a mess. I had this giant box of junk and I couldn’t travel with the ingredients that I needed. For me, that’s going to be just a total game changer to be able to bring the fresh, local ingredients, keep them at the right temperature and then also be able to have it in a container that will just ship easily,” said Crawford.
Crawford is still in the process of evaluating their choice to use third party apps for delivery because they frequently get complaints about how the food arrives. However, when Crawford uses his new Pizza GoBags to deliver catering orders, he has had nothing but happy customers.
“We did a catering order with 10 pizzas. We loaded up those 5-pizza GoBags, drove them over to the catering spot and I just noticed how much hotter and better the pizza was,” said Crawford.
KD Service Cart
“I know it’s kind of weird to get excited about a busing cart, but…it makes a big difference for us,” said Crawford.
If you have a foodservice operation that relies on busing carts, you know it’s not weird at all! Crawford was able to replace his old, difficult to clean carts, with the KD Service Cart.
“We use it every day; sometimes it’s hard to remember how nice a well-made product is, but this one’s easy to clean, it rolls smoothly and its capacity is great. It’s a nice addition to our work,” said Crawford.
Be sure to stop by the Cambro booth at this year’s International Pizza Expo from March 28 to 30 for your chance to win Cambro products. Contact your local Cambro rep to receive more information about any of the products Crawford mentioned above.