New passion for pizza in the province

Pizza popularity is rising in the province because of a new local Facebook group.

Beth Penney
Kicker

Mahmoud Elsayed (Moody) is the owner of Kilbride Pizza. His business is booming because of the local Facebook group “For Da Love Of Zaa”. Beth Penney/Kicker

The Facebook group ‘For Da Love Of Zaa!’ is taking over newsfeeds all across Newfoundland and Labrador. The purpose of the group is to take a picture of your freshly baked pizza and post it along with a rating out of 10.

Thomas Bishop created the group for fun while hanging out with friends, and just 10 months later the group has more than 19,000 members.

“I’ve always loved pizza,” said Bishop. “My dad owned a pizza shop in Nova Scotia when I was younger, so I’ve always been around it.”

Not only is the group helpful for ensuring that you’re making the most of your Friday night snack – but many pizza shop owners have turned to the group for advice.

Mahmoud Elsayed (Moody) is the owner of Kilbride Pizza who has been in the pizza business for more than 20 years. He joined the group to see if any members were rating his product.

“Every generation has a different taste,” said Elsayed. “So I looked at the comments and changed some of the spices on my pizzas.”

Elsayed also changed his crumbled bacon topping to real strip bacon. These couple of changes have put his business through the roof.

“Soon St. John’s is going to have the best pizza in North America,” said Bishop. “There are so many business owners in the group who are perfecting their pizzas because of this group.”

Kilbride Pizza has been the overwhelming fan favourite. Elsayed says it has been so hectic that he has even ran out of dough on a couple of occasions.

“Last night I got home at 1:30a.m.,” he said. “I gave my wife a hug and I swear to god I fell asleep on the couch in her arms. I didn’t stop all day.”

Michael Pittman is a group member who has been trying to snag a slice of the popular Kilbride Pizza, but he hasn’t had any luck so far.

“I tried calling tonight but couldn’t get through,” he said while nibbling on a slice of Greco Pizza. “No big deal. I’ll just try again when it’s not so crazy there.”

Since the boost in business, Elsayed has limited his pizza to one per customer. He told Kicker that he can make about 100 pizzas a night, and wants to be able to serve as many customers as possible.

Elsayed has help from friends to prepare the toppings in the morning, but when it comes to making the pizza it’s a one-man show.

“I don’t let anyone else touch the pizza,” he said. “I now have people from all over driving to Kilbride. I want to make sure they get the pizza they were expecting.”

 

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