one on one
co-owner, katie’s pizza & pasta osteria Written By Daniel Puma
photography by jonathan pollack photography
ROCK HILL, MO. Katie Collier is having a big year. not only is her rock Hill, missouri, restaurant, Katie’s Pizza & Pasta Osteria, packed on a nightly basis, Collier is in the process of implementing a mail-order pizza kit, opening a second location in town & Country, missouri, and just released a new video series in april. this spring, she also debuted a new menu and a larger, renovated patio at her flagship location. Her commitment to offering classic italian food with a modern attitude drives her restaurant’s success.
You tested your pizza kits recently in St. Louis: What was the response? Out of the 250 [we sent out], 95 percent – maybe even more, i’m trying to be conservative here – loved it. they loved the crust, which was the most important part about the pizza kit. When fresh dough travels, there are issues. We worked for a long time trying to test that; we tweaked the dough until it traveled well and wasn’t compromised. making a fresh pizza at home is such a fun experience for people, so we simplified the whole process [by separating and measuring out all pizza ingredients]. i think what we’re going to do is offer a featured, seasonal pizza each week. Tell us about the video series you’ve been filming. two years ago we started making little films just to get content out there. the first ones were really bad – on my end, not theirs. We decided to get more focused and started the #CookingWithKatie series, where it’s a stand-and-stir in my kitchen. We’ve been doing one or two of those a month. i launched the first season of our new youtube web series, From Scratch with Katie, in collaboration with White Buffalo Film Studio [last month]. it features local celebrities, chefs, artisan recipes and culinary culture. We hope to provide a fun, entertaining and interesting show for viewers, where they can learn about food and cooking techniques while also learning more about St. louis and the people who make this city a unique and amazing place to live. We plan on filming the second season this summer. When is your Town & Country location set to open? We can’t get into the space for about six months. right now all we’re doing is getting our mise en place together: We’re getting our drawings done, getting bids from general contractors, working on sourcing pieces for design and training some new staff. it’s going to be the same concept, but we will probably set up our kitchen a little differently and possibly have a dough room where you can watch the pasta being made. How do you balance so many projects? trust me, there are very overwhelming days. Sometimes i’m like, “thank god the place isn’t opening for six months!” We’re all very passionate about this, so you don’t really look at it as work. We feed off the success and how many people we meet while trying to balance some humility in there, as well. it’s fun. i have this philosophy that you work really hard for six months, and then it’s important to take a vacation for a week. usually when i come back from those trips, i am way more useful than i would have been had i not gone. Katie’s Pizza & Pasta Osteria, 9568 Manchester Road, Rock Hill, Missouri, 314.942.6555, katiespizzaandpasta.com
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