The popularity of street food has exploded in recent years with original and authentic food from passionate vendors and an alfresco dining experience the preference of many Britons on the go.
Eastbourne-based foodie, Stefano Karapatis is a perfect example of how passion, creativity and good quality food are the perfect ingredients for business success.
Stefano (25) who relocated from Brighton to Eastbourne set-up Garden Grove Pizzeria; a travelling restaurant specialising in wood fired Neapolitan pizza and Mediterranean antipasti’s.
The mobile catering business has an eco-friendly ethos, sourcing ingredients from sustainable farmers in Sussex and Italy, running their van on bio-diesel fuel and serving pizzas on bio-degradable platters.
Unhappy working for other people after graduating from University in 2012, Stefano spotted an opportunity to combine his creativity, love of food and desire to be his own boss. With the help of a Start Up Loan (SUL) from the Let’s Do Business Group (LDBG) he kick-started his venture in May 2014.
“The Start Up Loans scheme provided me with a loan that paid towards a refrigerated vehicle. The application process was smooth and effective, without a long turnaround, and helped secure a vital business asset.
Having a mentor to turn to gives me a breath of fresh air, a shoulder to cry on, and a person to laugh with. Always at the end of the phone, she gives me advice on situations I can’t decide on; it is always great to here from someone’s past experience.”
The SUL scheme is a government initiative to help new business ventures get up and running, with mentoring support and access to an affordable loan. The LDBG deliver the scheme throughout the South of England.
Since Garden Grove Pizzeria started trading they have visited events up and down the country delighting taste buds. This year they plan to expand enabling them to attend two events at the one time to keep up with demand. Stefano also employs two specialist trained Pizzaioli who make the dough from scratch.
For more information about Garden Grove Pizzeria, their upcoming events and private bookings, visit their website, follow @thegardengrove and like them on Facebook. Stefano can be contacted on 0777 297 9199 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.