Business: San Francisco Pizza
Voice: Susana Brito, Co-owner
Watch & Listen: Excerpt of this interview on YouTube
How has the COVID-19 crisis impacted your business?
When shelter in place started, my husband and I started just working longer hours and sending our other staff home earlier, you know cutting a few hours here and there. And that was like the first aid response. I would say by the second week, you know, as we were able to see a little bit more clearly which direction things were going to go – we just took a deep breath and said, “Hey, you know, we can just work so much, you know, there’s gonna be a lot on us being here, you know, opening and closing.”
Also, there’s another side of this pandemic, you know, because people are finding out [about us]. Some people never came where before. They’re coming in and saying “Wow! I did not know that you guys made that.”
What is the meaning of your business to you? to the community?
You know what’s so nice about this? I have kids that used to come here and they were like in elementary school. They come in today, you know, they have beards, they’re a grown man. And they tell us how they remember me when they used to come here. And it’s great. You know, some of them are parents today. And they say, “Oh, I used to buy pizza from you guys. You know, your slice of cheese for like, $1.99 way back when” and “here’s my child with me today.” You know, it’s so rewarding to hear that too; to feel that we have been here through generations.
What motivates you to continue to provide your services to the community?
I just want to let our customers know and I’m sure a lot of them already know that we are open for take-out and delivery. We have our full menu and specials like our Managers Special which is a medium 14-inch pepperoni pizza for only $8.99. That’s on our thick crust that’s our signature dough. I think it’s a great deal.
What are your current operations/services/specials & how people can shop local safely?
I am open 7 days a week and everything is made to order. I offer free delivery in Richmond, as well as contactless payment and pick-up. People can order through my website www.thebakererichmond.com or by calling (415) 691-1976.
What do you want people to know about your business?
Also in addition to pizza, one thing that I’d like to mention, is we have a full Italian menu. We have pastas, like lasagna, ravioli, chicken alfredo, and entrees. Everything is homemade. And my husband is the guy. He is the one responsible for all of this because he’s the chef. He’s always very worried all the time about keeping the quality of his food, developing his recipes, innovating, creating, making it better. You know the pizza sauce is his own recipe that he developed over the years. I think it’s very special, you know, he really puts a lot of time into things, a lot of thought. Everything he does is with the customer in mind. He aims for the “wow!”
What new safety/health protocols have you implemented since the shelter in place order?
With COVID-19, we of course had to close the dining room. With the directions we’ve had from the Contra Costa Health Department and Environmental Health, we enacted some changes here in the dining room so we can offer pick-up and take-out. Regarding social distancing, we have, put tape on the floor to allow the six feet apart. We pay attention to the maximum number of people can have inside at any one time.
We also offer delivery through our website. We have one driver inhouse. But of course we’re also working with the different [food delivery] platforms, like GrubHub, Uber Eats, DoorDash and PostMates.
How do you feel that you are continuing to foster the spirit of Richmond’s motto “Pride & Purpose” amidst this COVID-19 crisis?
Well, you know, I would say that working with the community, having seen the community response to COVID-19 everybody is, you know, coming together even more now. They are supporting us and we’re supporting them. We’re putting safety procedures in place and the community is following and accepting it. So I’m very proud of our community. Because, you know, we are coming together, we’re pulling this together, we’re together in this and I think we’re gonna make it through. And I think that way we can be very proud of the achievements.
Our purpose is to continue to provide jobs for our staff, to keep our staff here. A lot of our staff have been here with us for like 10 to 15 years. We have supported our workers and their families for that long. So there is a certain pride in that. And our purpose is to continue to provide good food quality ingredients, great service, and to be part of the community and continue to be part of the Richmond community and be as helpful as we can in ways.
Location: 1190C1 Macdonald Avenue, Richmond, CA
How to Support Local Safely: Order for pick-up, take-out or delivery, www.sanfranciscopizzaria.com
Good Deal: Let San Francisco Pizza do the cooking tonight! Try the Mega Family Special: Giant 20″ pizza, party wings & 2L soda for only $35.99 *limited time offer, take-out only* Order now (510) 412-4400 or www.sanfranciscopizzaria.com.
About Heart of Richmond
Heart of Richmond is a digital storytelling and marketing series designed to lift up the voices of our local entrepreneurial community. Over the course of 4 weeks we are sharing the stories and voices of 12 women-owned, food & beverage, Latinx-owned, and Black-owned Richmond businesses, and sponsoring promoted posts for them through our social media channels. Read, listen, stay tuned to our social media, and support local safely.
Interviews conducted by Richmond Main Street. Responses lightly edited for clarity with careful attention to maintaining the integrity of the participant’s time and insight. Photos by R.D. López/Shots From Richmond.
Generous support for the Heart of Richmond series provided by Wells Fargo.