For this edition of strEATtalk, we are transporting you right to the heel of Italy’s boot! Glistening turquoise waters, dramatic cliff coastlines & lightly fried pockets of dough filled with the freshest Italian ingredients. However, you needn't dig out your passport as Fritti have brought all the delights home with them in the cutest wee Piaggio.
One of our not-so-secret hidden gems, we caught up with the guys who are bringing sun-drenched goodness to Scotland (weather subject to change!)
Q: Why did you decide to start a street food business?
A: Me and my partner, Kasia, have always loved food and wanted to do something in catering. I worked in kitchens and hospitality to get through University and Kasia had done a couple of pop up Polish cafe events. We were looking for a way to get started and thought that street food would be a great way to see if our passion could actually turn into a business. The idea for Fritti came to us when we were in Naples and tried Panzerotti for the first time. We thought deep fried calzone pizza in Glasgow, surely that would work?
Q: What made you decide on Panzerotti as opposed to a regular pizza offering?
A: Like most people we love pizza and we did think about going down that road, however, there are loads of people doing pizza as street food and some of them very well indeed. We came up with the Fritti concept whilst travelling around the south of Italy. The street food that they have there and the way that people eat, especially in Naples and Sicily gave us the inspiration for our food. We loved how people would queue for a table at their favourite restaurant in the evening and whilst they were waiting, they would grab some snacks and a drink and gather with their friends and family in the nearest square.
Q: Where do you see the Scottish street food scene going in the next 3 years?
A: That's a tough one. We think that we will see more street food markets, like Platform, Dockyard Social that we have here in Glasgow.
Q: You have a clean and consistent brand image, what was your process in developing your branding?
A: We are lucky that I worked in a Digital Agency before starting up the street food thing, so knew lots of designers and illustrators. We got our friend, Laura Henderson who I worked with at the agency to do the branding for us. Our brief was pretty straightforward, we asked for something simple and Italian feeling. We love the brand that she came up with and the way that the food we cook is incorporated into it with the line drawings.
Q: You have been trading for less than a year, what advice would you extend to anyone starting out?
A: Do it! Definitely go for it. There is a lot of work involved but it can be great fun and very rewarding to do. Just be prepared to put the hours in.
Q: Favourite dish you've ever made?
A: This is the toughest questions you've asked! Our favourite dish that we do from the van at the moment is the Nduja and Mozzarella Arancini, we could eat those all day. If I have time at a weekend I love to do some slow-cooked meats like pulled pork shoulder or beef brisket. However, in this line of work time at the weekend is very rare, so we don't get the chance too often. I don't think that we could pick any one dish as a favourite, there are just too many things to eat...
March 29th-31st & 5th-7th April @ Platform, Glasgow
April 26th & 27th @ Paisley Food & Drink Festival
June 16th @ BaaD, Glasgow
#strEATtalk is our narrative series that shines a spotlight on Scotland's culinary scene, focusing on the journeys and stories of up and coming independent food innovators. Follow #strEATtalk as we get to know the people who are making our nation taste better!