Local restaurant sees boom in business despite partial closure


WEST MONROE, LA (04/08/20) Pizza Fest Apizzeria is a small business that recently opened up shop in West Monroe.

“We started selling pizza in December, the first part of December last year” said Gary Walker, Owner of Pizza Fest Apizzeria.

But they had to close their dining room doors almost as quickly as they opened them due to COVID-19. They are still making pizzas for delivery and pick up.

“We’re doing, I don’t know, three or four hundred a week right now. We’re still new, still increasing the volume. Folks are still trying to find us, discovering us by mistake or whatever happens. So, it’s a comfortable volume.”

Owner Gary Walker says that the number of pizzas that are leaving the restaurant each week is changing, but not in a bad way.

“We’ve seen a little bit of an increase” he said.

Which has resulted in hiring more employees. He says the boom in business is from a bittersweet combination.

“Unfortunately I think some of its due to the other restaurants closing, but it’s also due to us learning how to use Facebook, part of it was getting some good word of mouth” he said.

Despite the partial shut down they’re facing, they have no plans of closing their doors.

“That’s our plan, we’re going to do whatever it takes to stay here and feed the people. This is why we’re here, to benefit the community” he said.

He also says that the community of locally-owned restaurants is also banding together as much as possible to help each other to stay afloat by trading meals and helping wherever possible.

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