Pazzi announced earlier this week that it has opened its first official robotic pizza restaurant in Beaubourg in Paris, France. This is the second robot pizza restaurant for the company, following a pilot facility it opened in a Parisian suburb in 2019.
Dubbed the “Pazziria,” the almost fully autonomous kiosk uses robotic arms to and other bits of automation to flatten dough, apply sauce and toppings, places pizzas in the oven and slice and box them up. The Pazzi robots are able to prepare a pizza in 45 seconds, can bake six pizzas at a time and produce 80 pizzas per hour.
The robots are fully enclosed behind a wall of glass and there are no humans helping out. Orders can be placed via web app or touchscreen kiosk at the restaurant. Customers can watch as the robots whirl about making each pizza, and can retrieve their order from a marked cubby.
There is a question with every food robot startup over whether to make their machines look more like “robots” by using articulating arms, or to make them more like industrial machines where the automation is more hidden away. Other players in the robot pizza space such as xRobotics, Middleby and Picnic are all definitely on the more industrial side. Their machines are meant to be tucked away in kitchens, cranking out pizzas and are not on display for customers.
Pazzi is going a different direction than those other companies and leaning into the theatricality of its robots. Like the Creator restaurant (RIP), Pazzi places its robots front and center and fully visible to customers and passers by. The homepage of Pazzi’s website is even splashed with “Come for the show, stay for the pizza.”
There’s actually never been a better time for Pazzi to launch its robo-restaurant. The pandemic, which is still very much a part of our lives around the world, has restauranteurs and customers looking for more contactless ways of food prep and delivery. Since Pazzi uses robots, there is not human-to-human contact making and selling pizzas. Pazzi’s robots can also run continuously without taking a break. (They are monitored remotely should anything break down.) Pazzi’s robots also means that it doesn’t have to hire, train and pay human workers, which is good for Pazzi’s bottom line. That, however, also means there are fewer jobs, creating complex socio-economic quandaries that still need to be worked out.
With two sites now up and running in France, Pazzi is eyeing international expansion and says it will be opening a location in Switzerland (perhaps next to a Smyze drinks station?). For those in Paris looking wanting to try out this robo-pizza, Pazziria Beaubourg is located at 42 Rue Rambuteau, and is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to midnight.