“Tastes Like Heaven and
Smells Like Hell”
Its smell has been compared to rotting flesh, dead rats and
even sewage, but an Asian fruit called durian has become a
pizza topping of choice for some customers at a location of
the Smile Dessert restaurant chain in Auckland, New Zealand.
Victor Li, the eatery’s owner, says he sells about 50 signature
pies made with durian and local mozzarella cheese every week.
The fruit is hugely popular in southeast Asia and China, despite
its notoriously funky aroma. Once you get past the stench,
its fans say, the fruit delivers a rich, supersweet flavor with a
creamy texture. “People either like it or hate it,” Li told The
New Zealand Herald. “There is a saying that durian tastes like
heaven and smells like hell.”
Create a Media-Night Promotion
To celebrate any occasion (an anniversary, say, or a new menu rollout),
create a media night and invite local reporters, editors, food bloggers and
photographers. Let them experience your signature pizzas, enjoy a beer or
cocktail, meet your pizza chefs and even make pies of their own. Send them
home with happy memories, and they’ll remember you for food-related
features and reviews in the future.
Pop Goes the Pizza
at Paulie Gee’s
The U.S. Pizza Museum may not have its own building yet, but
it found a temporary home in a most fitting locale—the new
Paulie Gee’s restaurant in Chicago’s Logan Square. The iconic
Brooklyn pizzeria, which opened its first Windy City location
last July, is hosting a pop culture-inspired Pizza Museum exhibit
from November 11 through January 15. The Logan Square eatery’s owner, Derrick Tung, invited other Chicago pizza shops,
including Piece Pizzeria & Brewery, Coalfire, Dolce Italian,
Robert’s Pizza Company, Roots Pizza and The Stop Along, to
join the celebration, where they all gave away free pizza samples
at the opening-night party. Items on display included a “Pizza
Hut Pete” coin bank from 1969; a Milton Bradley pizza-themed
board game from 1974; and items from ShowBiz Pizza Place.
Founded in 2015 by Kendall Bruns, the U.S. Pizza
Museum has amassed 500-plus items associated
with pizza pop culture and famous pizzerias, including
menus, toys, clothing and artwork.
According to The Wall Street Journal, a café in Shanghai was
the first to offer durian-topped pizza in 2013 and sold about 70
pies a day, despite the fruit’s infamously pungent odor. More
recently, Pizza Hut has begun selling durian-topped pizzas in
several Chinese cities.
Quick Tip 2: