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Cover Letter For Design Project Pie

102

757 Americana Way
Glendale, CA91210
(818) 844-3562

Great place. Subway-type pizza station, where you choose what to place on your pizza. Employees always helpful. The restaurant is exceptionally clean. Better than Blaze Pizza in organization and service. Feels like more authentic pizza.. Although I will say their pizza crust is incredibly salty. The pizzas are personal so they don't really fill you up THAT much, but are great if you could eat! Would definitely recommend though.

*Peek-a-Boo* into the resturant. *Zooming* in trying to focus on the menu posted on the right side of the wall. The font is quite small. "Let's tip toe in and if we like it...we can stay, but if we don't we sneak out." (That was the plan) One foot into store and we've been spotted. *shoot!* "Hello" greets a friendly voice. I reply, while studying the menu. Then I turn to the gentleman: "First time!" We were guided through our pizza project. Not as hard as 4th grade projects. But, quite simple like the subway sandwich project. We chose red sauce. All the vegetables. Plus jalapeños cause we like the extra kick. We were recommended a salad along with pizza. (1 pizza was enough for the 2 of us). So we ordered a small Kale Casaer Salad. It was amazing. (I used the dressing on my pizza too). Hahhaa. 1 refreshment. The soda machine was special. Wish I would've captured it. Not your typical name brand sodas. Delicious Cola! We had seconds. The pizza was made quickly. We enjoyed it while sitting on stools and peering at the quotes on the wall. Glancing around and commenting on the interior. Pretty chill n cool place. I wouldn't mind coming here with a girlfriend or even by myself. The manager is very smiley and offers great suggestions. The service is excellent. No complaints here. Will be back!

Not as many toppings as Blaze pizza, but still delicious! Project Pie's build-your-own-pizza is $7.65, which is currently $0.30 cheaper than the Blaze pizza in the Glendale Galleria. I picked a "white" pizza with parmesan, mozzarella, ricotta, gorgonzola, chicken, sausage, mushroom, caramelized onion, onion, and cilantro as the toppings. I think it is very misleading that they call a pizza without (tomato) sauce a "white" pizza, which is printed at the bottom of their menus. I would think that when one hears "white" pizza, they expect a white alfredo-like sauce instead of tomato sauce on their pizza, like Blaze. The misleading wording and the fact that Project Pie does not carry white sauce (they only carry 1 sauce, tomato), makes me sad. Despite there being no white sauce or arugula, my pizza was still delicious, as I ordered many different cheeses on my pizza. The onion was nice and sweet and the cilantro added a pleasant fresh kick to my pizza. As usual, I was only able to finish 1/2 of my personal pizza, so I consider a pizza for $8 that can feed me for two meals to be awesome. My boyfriend also built a pizza, with all the meat options. The prosciutto was way too salty. He finished his entire pizza. Overall, my boyfriend and I had a great experience here. The employees were friendly, there was no line when we went (around 11:45a.m. on a Saturday), and we didn't have to wait long to get our pizza. I am glad we tried this place!

I love thin crispy pizza. Repeat. LOVE. So, we decided to try this place because I'm on a semi-vegetarian diet and my options were slim. What we ordered: -Kale Cesar - Litteraly, a box filled with kale pieces. Even the stems. Wasn't a fan of that, but the dressing was good. -#3 Pesto, tomato, artichoke, feta. Added garlic. White pie- If we didn't add the garlic, then I don't think the pie would have had much flavor. Crust was good and so yeah. Just an okay pizza. -To drink? Boylan cane sugar soda. Not bad! My suggestion? Skip the salad and get a pie to split!

Project Pie just had their soft opening and I was able to get in. The restaurant is a great addition to the Americana. Project Pie is part of a new wave of build-your-own pizza shops that are starting to get popular. The concept of Project Pie, which I happen to be a fan of, is that every pizza is a small personal pizza with unlimited toppings in any combination for the flat rate of $7.95 (or $6 for a cheese only). The menu has 8 different specials which you can get by itself or customize as you wish. You start off by telling the server what kind of pizza or base you want. Then you walk down an isle like Subway or Chipotle and add or subtract toppings. THE ORDER #2 - 5 out of 5 - Pepperoni, italian sausage, crumbled meatballs, mozzarella, red sauce, garlic ADDED bacon, mushrooms and jalapeños. If you love salted meats on your pizza this is the way to go. This may be one of the best personal pizzas I've had. the dough is thin...thinner than a typical thin crust but no quite Napolitanian. I personally liked it. It came out of the oven with a good consistency, firm enough to hold the toppings yet not overly crockery. The toppings were all quality assorted salted meats...really hard to go wrong with this one. #7 - 3.5 out of 5 - Prosciutto, caramelized onions, mozzarella, parmesan ADDED crumbled meatballs, tomatoes, mushroom and jalapeños. This was a much more subtle pizza. Maybe I fell in love with the #2 and didn't take the #7 for what it is. The caramelized onions added a very nice sweetness but I found the prosciutto a little more subtle than I would have preferred. Also, the prosciutto, as it tends to get when cooked, was a touch gummy. I still enjoyed the pizza, thought I am likely to give another pie a try next time I visit. OVERALL Project Pie is a great pizza option if you are at the mall and want to grab a meal (especially lunch). The pies are quality and come out in minutes after getting popped in the oven. This may not be a place I want to take a family of 4, but I found the portion great for myself. I finished the whole thing and felt satisfied, my fiancé had half and felt great. The DIY aspect and flat rate are great selling points...I'm sold.

It's fast, It's fresh, and the prices are great. I was hesitant at first, thinking that this was going to be like the Subway of fast food pizzas but after tasting their pizza I quickly changed my mind. I thought the pizza crust was just thin enough and crunchy out of the oven. The pizza sauce was equally as good and not at all acidic or canned tasting. As for the toppings, everything was fresh and tasty. Aside from The cheesecake factory this is probably the only other place you can get some decent food at the Americana.

I came here during a lunch break on a Sunday and I was surprised the line wasn't very long, but I was very happy about it. For me, the pizza was a perfect size. I ordered the #5 + prosciutto. Tip: Already plan out what you're going to order instead of figuring it out as they are making the pizza! The customer in front of me was just looking at the ingredients and asking about everything. It was a short line but it took awhile for me to order!

If you're on a budget and can't afford to eat at Katsuya or Cheesecake factory, and are looking for somewhere affordable to eat near the Americana then I highly recommend Project Pie! I love this place! Build your own personal pizza and they have a bunch of good HIGH QUALITY FANCY toppings like ricotta cheese (my favorite) and caramelized onions (marinated in brown sugar) with options like garlic butter on your pizza..omg..so amazing. I was so indecisive but the girl who was working that night was so nice and patient with us! We were wondering how long it would be to cook the pizza but it was literally done in about 3 minutes!!! A whole personalized pizza of your choice of toppings plus a drink is a little over $10. And it's a huge pizza that you can eat half and take the other half home for another meal. So worth it. I loved their inspirational environment with powerful quotes covering their walls and they had a good amount of seats and even had an ipad where you can take selfies with your friends! So "hip" of them. Definitely caters to a younger crowd, but families and anyone for that matter can take advantage of their yummy, affordable pizza. I really appreciate the staff for being so kind and catering to us even though it's not a fancy place. I felt like we were still treated like royalty. Thank you, Project Pizza!! Juice N Jenn will return !!!! :)

Good pizza, great price! Easy to pop in and I loved the pizza. I noticed they also do have a gluten free crust offering. Delicious. I will come back.

stopped by for a quick bite while shopping at americana similar to blaze pizza and all those other DIY pizza spots now popping up i thought it was okay but the flavors weren't kind of uninspiring the sauce was whatever the crust was ok the toppings were fine so overall, a-ok

Another build-your-own pizza place! I like this location in the Americana next to Pinkberry and Jamba Juice and separate from the other high-end restaurant that take up the center space in the shopping center. There aren't too many tables, which I think is actually a bad thing because most people would eat in while taking a break from shopping. I can't imagine coming to Americana just to take out a pizza from here. The toppings are very fresh and have a great variety, except they don't have anchovies... Their cheese is super authentic! The mozzarella struggled to hold on to the rest of the pizza as I bit out of it. Their prices are reasonable and they are pretty quick in terms of service. I wish they had a list of their toppings not just on the beginning of the line but along the glass coverings like Subway does. Service was friendly, and the pizza was cooked to perfection. The crust! Oh yeah... Will be back soon enough

I don't like giving bad reviews, especially to a place that recently opened for business, but I couldn't skip on sharing my experience today. After my last visit, I went back with my sister because she really wanted to try Project Pie, and the experience was drastically different from my visit a week ago. The girl taking my order at the beginning of the "assembly line" was so unresponsive. I was standing there waiting and she turns to me and says "do you want a pizza too?" in a very condescending tone, I'm sorry, but why would I be standing there waiting if I didn't want a pizza? I asked what the sauces were (they don't have too many choices) and she kind of just muttered something. She was rude and not the least bit interested in serving the customer. I know everyone has a bad day and I'm not expecting to be treated like royalty either, but a little bit of effort could go a loooong way. The second girl who was putting the toppings on was plain out of it. She was doing my pizza and the pizza of the customer in front of me at the same time. I had to repeat myself three times on one occasion before she heard me and she didn't even acknowledge that she heard what I said. I mean, isn't the whole business model based around making pizzas your way? At least with Pizza Rev, they have amazing customer service and a lot more choices when it comes to their build-your-own options (more doughs and sauces to choose from and things are actually LABELED so you know what you're looking at). Two stars for the pizza tasting good, but like I said in my previous review, it's comparable to Pizza Rev taste wise. If I'm paying almost $10 for a small pizza, I expect some professionalism at the very least. I won't be back :(.

I'm a huge fan of Pizza Rev in Burbank (same build-your-own pizza concept) so was very curious to see how Project Pie would compare. The pizza crusts were equally delicious but a few reasons they get a 4 as opposed to a 5. First, they don't spread the sauce that well and leave half of the pizza dry. Also, when the lady was making our vegetarian pizza, she put her gloved hand in a bunch of prosciutto and we immediately said we didn't want that. Instead of changing her glove or using her other hand, she dipped it right into the veggies. I wish they used serving utensils for the different ingredients to avoid cross-contamination! I also had the kale salad with poppyseed dressing which was very fresh & flavorful!!! Lots of yummie ingredients like sunflower seeds, cabbage, cheese, etc. They have a nice ambiance (indoor and outdoor seating), a great sugarcane cola machine (LOVE their sodas), and great service. The pizzas are large and one pizza is the perfect amount for 2 people who are light eaters. The price is just 4 cents less than Pizza Rev ($7.95 vs $7.99). Parking in this area can be a bit of a nightmare. There's a garage on Maryland & Harvard that has 90 minutes of free parking and is less than 2 blocks from the Americana where this restaurant is located - most Americana-goers don't know about this garage so you can easily find parking there!

"Only dead fish swim with the current," reads the wall. Strangely, anchovies are nowhere to be seen. Project Pie is the latest build-your-own pizza establishment in an increasingly crowded stream of similar concepts that opened yesterday in the Americana of Glendale, offering a set price of $8 for a pizza with your choice of toppings in addition to salads, drinks, and notably dessert pizzas. Progress, it seems, is the theme at Project Pie. Walls are littered with letters delivering inspirational messages about trial and error. A door to the kitchen actually reads 'trial and error.' While I understand the sentiment and that they likely refer to the process of building your own pizza, I'm not sure it's something best put above a door to the kitchen. Or perhaps it refers to the current (see what I did there) state of these pizza establishments, that this (this!) is the latest and greatest iteration. The site after all tells me that the founder also started Mod Pizza and Pie-Ology before Project Pie 'the next generation; the culmination of James' experience and learnings.' Where Project stands out is, a bit randomly, the crust. This version has pared down some of the toppings a bit but offers others I haven't seen at similar concepts. Welcome are roasted Brussels sprouts and prosciutto. Missing is fresh mozzarella. Project Pie doesn't have some of the zanier toppings of competitors, but if you're going for something premium, you're going to need better cheese. Oh well, maybe the next iteration.

Seriously the best pizza around for under $10 EXACTLY HOW YOU LIKE IT. I get garlic butter brush, 4 cheese with fresh motz, reg motz, ricotta, another cheese, mushroom, pepperoni, bacon, brussel sprouts and spinach. Perfection. Add a little pepper flake and parmesan...scrumptious.

Took the family to Project Pie and it was delish! I ordered a #5 (all cheese white pizza) and added carmelized onions, chicken and artichokes and we ordered a gluten free brussel sprout and prosciutto, all yummy! Also, I love that there is Boylen soda instead of Coke! The crusts were perfectly charred and crunchy on the outside and chewy in the middle, just the way we like it! We are going back this weekend to get some more...

Went here for a quick dinner after shopping at the Glendale Galleria. It's pretty new and still has to work out a couple of kinks here and there, but it's not bad. The place is clean and has a modern feel to it. You walk in and there's a menu to the right before you get the the pizza making station. You can choose from their pizza menu or be creative and build your own! We decided to choose their #8 and a kale salad, since I was way too hungry to build my own. After they take your order, they begin making your pizza and you can watch as they do it. After your pizza is ready to be put in the oven, they hand you parchment paper with your order written on it to hand to the cashier. We got our pizza in a just a couple of minutes and started devouring it from hunger. It was pretty good, but nothing too special to me. The #8 had brussel sprouts, proscuitto, white sauce, and cheese on it. We also added mushrooms to it. I liked the crust though- light and crispy. Our kale salad, however, still hadn't come out so the boyfriend just asked them to see where it was. They were still making it so that came out in just a few minutes after we asked. The kale salad was pretty barren and plain. It came with a huge amount of kale and just a tiny portion of everything else. The boyfriend thought he was eating grass, so I'm not sure if I would eat this again.

The crust/dough is very nice. Thin, the way I prefer my pizza. Since it was our first time, we ordered from the menu. We chose the #1 (cheese) and the #2 (sausage, pepperoni) and it was okay. Nothing great. Next time, I'll make my own. Staff is friendly, ambience nice, price right.

I have been in twice and had a great experience both visits. It's a brand new shop and there are some kinks to work out, but I am giving them an "A" for effort. Both visits, I had welcoming and attentive service. You build your own pie with a server helping you the whole way to the oven. There are plenty of quality ingredients to chose from. You start with the base and build up. If you want more of any topping, they will give you more. I personally like thin crust pizza with my toppings spread equally across the pie. Too many toppings usually lead to a heavy and flimsy pie. Both times I went the spread of toppings was just right. At the register I was greeted by friendly staff. Cook time was less than 8 minutes. I'll visit again.

Just another pizza joint but in a Jimmy Choo box. No taste :( Sorry Project Pie, this should have been just a project...

Here’s the story…

It was a most regular Monday, the 3rd of November 2014 — I was making my way to work at the Amazon Development Centre in Barbican. I was just shy of 2 years into my first ever full time design role as UX Designer for Amazon’s on demand video service. Generally, I was pretty content with my situation, after the pleasant realisation that Art Uni wasn’t simply an expensive detour from my fruit n’ veg stacking job.

However, on this Monday, there happened to be 3 young founders stood outside Barbican tube station, handing what looked like shitty A4 word documents to random passers by. These particular dudes were the founders of London Discovery App, Dojo.

Now, I almost never take random flyers off the street, but for some mystical reason, today was different. Maybe it was the cheap printer paper, lack of bells & whistles, or just the tired faces of the founders that reminded me of reluctantly shovelling flyers at students during my brief spell as a promoter at one of Brighton’s most disappointing nightclubs.

Unfurling the crumpled 80GSM paper from my pocket, It read; “Hey neighbour, my name is Robbie, I just quit my job at [insert cushy corporation here] to build this app which finds the best stuff to do in your city, we think you’ll love it”.

Hey! I’m looking for the best stuff to do in my city!

So, I got into work, connected to Amazon’s inexplicably slow, Irish routed wifi and proceeded to download the Dojo app. I mean… it was fine. It recommended 3 things to do in London that day, from quirky coffee shops to schmancy pop-ups and exhibitions. The design was also ‘fine’, there were some funky textures going on, questionable interactions and a bit of polish missing, but it had great potential.

Since moving to London, I had been a big fan of the YPlan app, which up until a few years back, had a similar proposition, finding the ‘off the beaten track’ events and happenings across London. But recently, they seemed far more focused on flogging tickets to the latest Bieber gig at the O2 arena, or discount West End shows. For me, Dojo was looking to fill that gap of local, curated things to do in the city.

Could this be the cure to my bleak London social life of ‘spoons and that noisy Ping Pong place in Farringdon?

Step 1: Rattle off some feedback

So for whatever reason, maybe it was a slow day, I decided to write them some feedback - I mean, I really wanted this product to exist, so it made sense to try and make it happen! I scribbled down several pages of my thoughts in an email, from the design of the existing product, bugs I encountered, and where I could see some opportunities for the future. I probably spent about 30 minutes max just nailing out some unedited bullet points with very little expectation of a response.

Turns out, they liked the feedback, were looking for a designer and offered me a job;

Not bad for half an hour of something vaguely resembling work. My response? (In my head of course):

“Erm, I’ve got a pretty cushy job at one of the largest tech companies in the world. Packing that in for a risky startup that operates from some cushions outside a co-working space toilet doesn't exactly fit my idea of career progression” — Career Ladder Jamie

Step 2: Take a chance

But for the second time that day, I made a decision that surprised me — I accepted their invitation to stop by the office and meet in person, and proceeded to fall in love with everything they were doing. I met with Robbie and Nick in a tiny room in Warner Yard where we spent the next 2 hours running through feedback, finding out about the vision of the company and planning how we could take the next steps with the app. They had so much passion for their product, it was like nothing I was used to.

And then just when I thought I’d avoided an interview…

“So, have you worked on any iOS apps before?” — “Erm, not really.. no.”

“Do you have a portfolio we could see?” — “Everything is NDA… and all my Uni stuff is conceptual waffle”

“Experience with startups..?” — “I love CityMapper, how good are the release notes!”

“So… can you do this?” — “Suuuure, and here’s how we’re going to do it...[bla bla user stories, testing, iteration]”

Step 3: Prove yourself

I offered to put together a more comprehensive audit of the current experience, and map out a bit of a roadmap for a redesign over the course of a few evenings per week. At this point, I still had no intention of quitting my job, but it seemed like a new challenge, away from some of a bureaucracy of my Amazon day-to-day. I presented the plans back to the founders; where I thought they should focus, where the biggest pain points are and how we could go about validating those ideas. I chucked together a few prototypes on Pixate and Marvel, proved that my grey box skills were up to scratch and set to work.

Note: I think if I had been actively seeking a role at this point, I would have likely starting whipping up a CV, cover letter and desperately putting together a generic portfolio site. Instead, I accidentally produced a game-plan of what I would do if i joined the team — probably the strongest approach I could have taken.

Over the next 3 months myself and a fresh faced, not-yet-bald Sam Piggott, designed, developed and shipped Dojo v2 from the ground up and even nabbed a feature by Apple as one of the Best New Apps.

Appy new year.

It was incredible how much we had achieved in those 3 months, more than had ever seen the light of day in almost 2 years at Amazon, and I had proven to the founders (and myself) that I had it in me to add value to the company.

Decision Time…

It finally came down to an ultimatum; Robbie needed to keep this pace up, which meant a full time product lead, someone to grow the team and make that vision happen. If it wasn’t going to be me, they were going to have to look elsewhere.

I bought myself 4 weeks to make a decision. Taking the job would mean a pretty hefty pay cut, no security, losing some mystical Amazon shares, but most importantly not shipping the project I had been working on for the last 2 years. I had landed most designer’s dream job straight out of Uni, and it felt like throwing that away would be a pretty outrageous thing to do.

I spent hours chatting to friends and family, secret lunches consulting with Dojo iOS dev and my now co-founder Sam Piggott about what I should do. Robbie even roped all of Dojo’s investors into sending me an email about why joining would be the right decision. I spent an hour chatting to one of Dojo’s early VCs, alexdunsdon as he was putting his kids to bed, about what an opportunity this could be.

But still… I just couldn’t do it. On the one hand, exciting new startup life and a whole heap of responsibility, but on the other it felt like I was about to throw away 2 years of hard work. I made the call to see my current project out, which was due to ship in 3 months, and take my chances if the job was still going later in the year. I made my way to Warner Yard for what I assumed would be the final time, ready to say “thanks, but no thanks”.

I signed myself into the building, sat down in the lobby and checked my phone… a message from my boss saying they had postponed the project (again) for another 6 months.

Fuck it, I’ll take the job at Dojo.