”Look, the robots are doing checks!”. If the world day of creativity and innovation will only be celebrated on Thursday, we were able to test, in preview, a pizza entirely made by machines which press the dough, arrange the filling, put in the oven and cut in equal parts, after the order placed on an automatic terminal.
In all, we will need 5 to 6 minutes of patience, including 3 of cooking, before being able to bite into it. In the meantime, we were able to admire the choreography of the ”pizzaïolos”, three robotic arms, behind glass. “The show is as important as the tasting, that’s why we wanted as much transparency as possible” explains Sébastien Roverso, one of the co-founders of ”Pazzi”, the anagram of ‘ ‘Pizza’ (did you have it?), at the origin of the first independent pizzerias in the world (and 100% French!).
With his sidekick Cyril Hamon, they have opened this establishment of the future in Paris since August, near the Center Pompidou in the 1st arrondissement, after a first restaurant in a shopping center in Seine-et-Marne, in 2019.
From 7 to 14 euros per pizza, on site or to take away
Last week, the two engineers presented their new menu, signed by the French chef of Sicilian origin Thierry Graffagnino, triple world pizza champion (2011, 2012 and 2013), 45 years in the business and trainer all over the world. In addition to a distributor offering drinks and desserts signed by a Meilleur Ouvrier de France, customers have the choice of around fifteen pizzas, from 7 to 14 euros, on site or to take away, with the possibility of personalizing them by removing or by adding ingredients. Margarita, Queen, four cheeses, Savoyarde, chicken, forest, salmon, burger style, Bolognese, goat cheese and grilled vegetables… As desired!
The chef’s advice: how to reheat a pizza?
Oven ? Microwave oven ? Well no: once the order has been picked up, if when you get home, the pizza is cold, here is chef Thierry Graffagnino’s advice for reheating it: “Reheat it for two minutes in the pan with a smaller lid, so not to cover the edges. It will thus remain tasty in the center and crunchy on the edge”.
“We started in our parents’ garage. Our idea was to make the best pizza at any time of the day,” they say. “After five years of development, we met Thierry and presented the project to him. He loved the idea but he didn’t like the dough. They therefore teamed up with him to review the fundamentals of the dough recipe, but also the tomato sauce, the choice of products, coming only from France or Italy… Five years of additional efforts have enabled them to to open these two fully robotized restaurants, equipped with state-of-the-art technology.
“This is our second shop, but it’s the first with a standard robot”. Despite a big boost from the Sysaxes company in Allenjoie (Doubs), which initially lent them equipment, “the prototype cost us one million euros, this one 500,000 euros. Future production robots would cost around 300,000 euros. We have already had many requests, half of which come from abroad. It took us ten years of work to make our dream come true, but it will take a few more years to be profitable… 13 million euros have been invested in all. We are aiming to set up in Europe and the United States,” says Sébastien, whose face is familiar to us.
A passage in ”Grands Reportages” on TF1
He nods. “With Cyril, we appeared a few years ago on the program ”Grands reportages” on TF1″. At the time of filming, the two accomplices had shown their robot to Thierry, but the latter had not wanted to follow them after expressing reservations about the dough. Today, it is prepared by a human hand and rests at least 48 hours in advance. The robot will then come and cut it, shape it and garnish it. “The great strength of the robot is the ability to perform repetitive tasks in parallel”. His cadence? “It can take up to 45 seconds per pizza when you order several.” While the machine can take out up to 80 pizzas per hour, for now their goal is to sell 180 per day.
“For us, fast food will evolve in the coming decades and robotics will have its role to play in the repetitive tasks required by this type of assembly”, bets Sébastien, who specifies that everything has been thought out and created specifically for the establishment. , whether it is the shovel, the press, the oven or even the digitalization of stocks, so that the robot is never short of a product… and that the show continues.
Pazzi, at 42 Rue Rambuteau, 75001 Paris, open every day from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
What we think
At the automatic terminal, we opted for the ”Carbonazza”, a tasty ”white” pizza with cream, mozzarella, bacon bits and onions, and a pesto supplement for less than 12 euros. And frankly, on the palate, the preparation was excellent, the dosage of ingredients balanced, the dough melting and crunchy at the same time… Only downside: if the dough of the Pazzi pizzas contains half the gluten of that of traditional pizzas due to the choice of flour and the resting time granted to it, all those intolerant to gluten will not digest it better for all that. As a precaution, do the test on one part before throwing yourself on the whole pizza!