Build-Your-Own Pizza Shops Quickly Rising As The Next Big Thing

Posted: June 27, 2014 in Food, Los Angeles, Orange County, Restaurant
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As part of human nature, people want to have control. Control equates a sense of security to a person, so when a person has control over a situation, that person feels secure and more confident. For decades, when people go out to eat, they place good faith in those working in the kitchen to deliver the correct food. However, nobody ever truly sees the people preparing the food. How can people reliably eat food that they do not see actually prepared? This lack of control has come to light recently, especially with all the reported tampering of food in fast food joints. Certain businesses that prepare the food in the front so that customers can see the food places the control back in the hands of the customer. Subway already has a handle on that, allowing customers to see everything that goes into their food. But what about other types of food? Historically, people craving pizza order it but never actually see it prepared because they either show up to pick it up when it finishes baking, or the business prepares it all in the back. Until recently, nobody had control over the fate of their pizza pies, other than leaving it to good faith that the place will construct it correctly. Now in this era, we finally see a shift in the way we eat pizza.

Everybody loves pizza, and everybody loves different things on their pizza pie. Ordering a pizza where everyone wants the same toppings poses a real struggle. To circumvent that, some creative minds have started shop where customers get to build their own personal pizzas. Unlike chain pizza places, local entrepreneurs have opened up their own shops that allow customers to build pizzas with a vast array of gourmet toppings available. Each pizza typically has a flat price, ranging from $6 to $9, and allows unlimited topping choices on that pizza. The degree of customization varies between businesses; for example, some places allow the customer to select a crust type, while some places only have standard crust available. Ultimately, the major differences lie in the toppings offered. One place may carry a unique topping, such as balsamic vinaigrette, or another may carry a unique cheese, like goat cheese.

Many of these build-your-own pizza shops have appeared all over the world within the past year. In Southern California, a solid amount exist all around – check out these build-your-own pizza shops in the greater Los Angeles area.

Pizza Studio

With multiple locations across the country (and more to come), Pizza Studio seeks to expand this concept to turn into mainstream pizza. They have a great degree of customization, with different crusts available, including a gluten-free crust. They also carry a greater variety of toppings, including the aforementioned balsamic vinaigrette drizzle. Pizza Studio bakes their pizzas using a conveyor oven. Their custom pizzas cost $8, while their pre-designed pizzas, such as the Island pizza pictured above, cost just $6. Prices may vary based on the location. Pizza Studio also has their own mobile ordering website for customers to place their orders ahead of time.


Although strong in California, Pieology has locations in other states too, and plan to open more by the year’s end. Although they only have one type of crust available (gluten-free available upon request), they make up for it with a massive selection of fresh vegetables for toppings. Their meat also seems to pack a stronger savory flavor, partially due to their use of a brick oven. Pieology also utilizes “After Bakes,” or toppings that they can add after baking the pizza pie.

The Pizza Press

While The Pizza Press may only have one location, they picked a prime spot to position themselves in. Located across the street from Disneyland, this tiny shop (easy to miss) doles out pizza pies with the freshest ingredients available. Customers can build their own pizzas here, but The Pizza Press has a solid menu of toppings combinations that they can create, all named after newspapers such as The Times. The Pizza Press bakes their pizzas with a conveyor oven. The Pizza Press stand out from the rest by having craft beer on tap for those dining in. They do a good job serving up local beer from the likes of Bootlegger’s, Noble Ale, Hangar 24, and Anaheim Brewery, just to name a few.


PizzaRev definitely has expanded the quickest, and currently has the most locations open in the country out of all the places mentioned in this post. Just like Pieology, they only have a standard crust available, or a gluten-free crust upon request. Their crusts also feel a lot thinner than other places, most likely from their use of a brick oven. They do have some interesting toppings available, such as chorizo and fennel. Undoubtedly, no one else has a dessert pizza quite like PizzaRev’s, which basically tastes like a hot cinnamon roll with crumbled Oreos.


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