Interview by Lindsay DeLisio
ROXBURY PIZZA COMPANY | BOARDMAN, OHIO | SMALL BUSINESS FEATURE
First up is Roxbury Pizza Company!! And this one comes with a warning.. This pizza is addicting! Holy delicious. I caught up with Justin & Amanda at a private party they were catering – these guys are so much fun! And keep scrolling – more pictures to be seen after my interview with them.
So, was this venture a long time coming? What was your journey like to opening this business?
Justin started using his parent’s brick oven about eight years ago. Already having a love for cooking, he found a new passion…wood fired pizza. It was a learning experience but the more he used the oven, the better the product turned out. After a couple years of tinkering with his grandma’s old dough recipe, he finally started getting the consistency he wanted in the product. Eventually, he started making pizza every Sunday for his family and friends using the brick oven. He spent countless hours refining his recipes, tinkering with procedures, and researching artisan pizza. We started to see the food truck craze take off on the West Coast and it caught our attention. Being from Youngstown, Ohio and with so many amazing pizza places already around, we wanted something unique. It was a void in the area that we thought we could fill. Four years ago, Justin contacted a builder out west and started making plans for a mobile wood fired pizza oven but the timing wasn’t right. Whether it was finishing up school, new jobs, or just the hustle and bustle of everyday life, it got pushed off until the beginning of this year. We launched Roxbury Pizza Co. in March of 2014. It was a long time coming, but definitely worth the wait.
Tell me about the name Roxbury, does it have a special meaning to you?
Justin’s mother grew up on Roxbury Avenue on the south side of Youngstown, Ohio. It was there that she learned to make pizza from her mom. Justin’s Grandma Anne had a passion for cooking and baking and was well known in the neighborhood for making fresh bread and homemade pizza. All of our recipes have been handed down from generation to generation. As a tribute to Justin’s mom and Grandma, Roxbury Pizza Co. got its name from the street where it all began.
You guys are newlyweds and you seem to be perfectly happy working together in such a close space! What has it been like working together on this, and how has being married added to the success of your business? How has your business added to the success of your marriage?
We’d be lying if we tried to paint the picture of a perfect marriage with a perfect business where everything ran smoothly. It can be stressful at times. We butt heads and place blame on each other when things don’t go perfect. Launching a new company and starting a new journey in marriage at the same time is not for the faint of heart. But we’ve learned a lot about each other over the last 4 months. If anything, this business has helped our relationship grow. We realize that we both have our strengths and weaknesses but we have learned to help each other through them. There are times when one of us loses our focus or gets discouraged but the other one is always there to help us get through our struggles. This business has taught us the importance of working together for one common good.
You offer so many different toppings, some traditional, and some I would never expect to be on a pizza! Can you list your toppings for us and what is your favorite combination?
Our toppings are endless. We love working with our customers to create a unique menu and experience that caters to their specific wants and needs. Whether they are a vegetarian, vegan, or have a certain food allergy we will work with the customer to come up with a menu so no one is left out on the wood fired pizza experience that we offer. For the traditionalist, we have your basic toppings that you see at any pizza shop in America…your pepperoni, sausage, mushrooms, etc.. We offer the local favorites which are the Brier Hill and Hot Pepper White. In the summer we like to work with whichever toppings are in season at our local farms. We use locally grown asparagus, peppers, and tomatoes when available just to name a few. With so many great options, it is hard to pick a favorite, especially when you eat pizza so often! A favorite at the Farmers’ Markets this year has probably been our Fig & Goat Cheese Pizza. This pizza has fresh figs, goat cheese, caramelized onions, and is finished with fresh arugula and an aged balsamic drizzle.
You travel to different local markets throughout the week, what is the best way for us to follow you and know where you’re going to be next?
Social media is the best way to follow us. I try to always post online where we will be set up. We are on Instagram (@roxburypizza), Facebook (Roxbury Pizza Company), and Twitter (@roxburypizza).
You also cater for private parties, is this all year round? Or just during the warmer months?
Although we know our busy season will be during the warmer months, we do have events scheduled into November and December this year. We are counting on our 900 degree oven to keep us warm!
You can get ahold of Roxbury Pizza at the information listed below, and don’t forget to follow them on Facbook here, and on Twitter and Instagram @roxburypizza
Justin Turner – 330-559-6254
Amanda Turner – 330-207-4706