Leslie’s Pizza Kitchen will be celebrating is fifth anniversary on Dec. 6.
Owned and operated by Leslie Reynolds, she opened her new business in 2017. The Leslie’s Pizza Kitchen first operated out of her own house after converting her garage into a commercial kitchen. Their food delivery service was a highly sought-after endeavour.
“Our business plan indicated that this would be a service that the people of Ear Falls would appreciate,” says Leslie.
They made the usual restaurant favourites of pizza, burgers, wraps, and calzones, as well as many other special foods. They deliver to anywhere in Ear Falls, which has included lodges, boat launches, docks and even the occasional tent.
After COVID hit, Leslie’s immediately set up all of the necessary protocols to keep the community safe. They implemented electronic payment options, staff wore masks, and orders were often dropped off outside the resident’s door to maintain contactless service.
“COVID did not hinder our business, as residents appreciated having this at home delivery service,” says Leslie, “At one point we were even washing our cash.”
On Nov. 19, 2021, the business moved from Leslie’s residence into their new location in the Ear Falls Plaza. They bought the place from Pape’s Diner after the old owners retired from the restaurant business. Leslie then set out repainting the whole building and installing a new ceramic tile floor. They installed large equipment, shelving, prep tables and turned a large empty room into their new bakery and prep station.
“Our renovations were extensive and sometimes challenging,” says Leslie, “it was a lot of work that has afforded us the space and smooth operation of business.”
After taking on a new location, Leslie’s Pizza Kitchen expanded into a restaurant and café. They hired on a barista and began selling specialty hot drinks and bakery foods in addition to their prior menu. The space also allowed for them to have dine in areas for customers to enjoy their meals and visit. Their well-established menu and fresh daily bakery options are popular among locals and visitors of Ear Falls.
“There is something for everyone,” says Leslie.
In 2018, only one year after opening Leslie’s Pizza Kitchen, they were nominated for the Best Home-Based Business Award for the Chukuni Economic Development Corporation and won.
Leslie says that the best part of running their business has been watching the satisfaction of providing the community with the very best restaurant food possible.
Everything they serve is top grade, fresh and made right on location. They get to see families come in often, and watched their children grow throughout the years. They see kids from the public school come in with their friends for lunch during the school year. They have met people from all across Canada and the United States.
“Our goal is to continue what we’re doing, improve on our quality and service and to continue to grow the café to an even more popular gathering place for teens, families, friends and business people,” says Leslie.