After the success of their first restaurant manned almost entirely by robots, French pizza company Pazzi has opened its second storefront in Paris.
While several restaurants around the world use autonomous machines to prepare food, most prefer to keep them behind the scenes and out of sight. Pazzi takes a different approach, letting customers watch as mechanical arms handle every step of the pizza-making process. The company website encourages patrons to “come for the show, stay for the pizza.”
Even passers-by can observe the orange-and-silver arms whirling around behind a glass wall, stamping dough, pouring sauce, sliding pizzas into the ovens, slicing them, and placing the final product in boxes for pickup.
Customers can place their orders via the touchscreen kiosks inside or through the online app. The specialized robots can prepare a pizza in 45 seconds, producing up to 80 an hour. No humans are required, and in fact, they would probably just slow down the workflow.
“We are in a very fast process, with a perfect control of time, a control of quality since we have a constancy offered by robotics, and then an environment that is quite cool and relaxed,” Pazzi co-inventor Sébastien Roverso told Euronews. “The idea is also to spend a few pleasant minutes watching the robot while you wait for your pizza to be made.”
The unique experience was created by Roverso and his childhood friend Cyrill Hamon, both engineers, in response to their college-day desires to find tasty pies at any hour of the night. “We dedicate Pazzi to all the curious and inventive minds who think that there is always a way to get what you want!” they proclaim on the website.
The two enlisted the help of renowned chef and triple world pizza champion Thierry Graffagnino, utilizing him as a chief consultant to perfect their automated pizza.
“What is difficult is the dough,” explains Graffagnino. “Because the dough is alive, you don’t work with frozen dough. The machine must constantly adapt to the evolution of the dough. So, we had to give the robot the means to make these corrections on its own, and some pizza makers can’t even manage that themselves.”
Each Pazzi culinary creation also boasts a quality set of ingredients. Organic tomatoes, Auvergne PDO blue cheese, Limousin beef, Bleu-Blanc-Coeur ham, and Lael Rouge chicken are among the elements available for each order.
With the opening of a second store, the next step looks to be international expansion. “Pazzi means ‘crazy’ in Italian,” said company CEO Philippe Goldman at the 2019 opening of the first restaurant. “It’s in the image of our team and the crazy bet invested in research for six years, concretized in particular by five patents. The objective is now to conquer not only the global fast-food market…by creating a European champion but also to fight junk food while meeting the structural challenges of the sector. Pazzi’s mission is to put technology and robotics at the service of taste and healthier food.”
Those outside the Paris area can follow the pizzeria and watch videos of its digital chefs on Pazzi’s Instagram page.