California Pizza Kitchen is a chain of restaurants that specialize in California-style pizza. But what exactly is California-style Pizza, and why is this restaurant chain that sells it so successful?
California-style pizza is commonly referred to as gourmet pizza or sometimes simply California pizza. It is made as a single serving size only, meant to be eaten by one person. The crust of this single serving pizza is thin and topped with a fusion of foods. These toppings can be anything from barbeque chicken to spinach and apple wood smoked bacon or even roasted pine nuts.
Califronia Pizza Kitchen, also known as CPK began in 1985, when the attorneys Rick Rosenfield and Larry Flax decided to start up a pizza parlor in Berkeley, California. Spago’s pizza chef Ed LaDou was hired to design the menu. LaDou decided to create innovative new types of pizza, using foods that people liked but did not traditionally eat on top of pizza. One of the most successful of these nontraditional pizzas was the BBQ Chicken Pizza. Spago also enhanced the California style pizza by using a wood-burning pizza oven to make the pizzas.
Although California Pizza Kitchen mostly serves California style pizza, the restuarant also has a variety of other items on the menu. These alternate options include pasta dishes (such as multigrain penne and four cheese ravioli), mahi mahi, Jambalaya, Baja fish tacos, and even crab cakes. Those who are looking for a light meal often choose soups such as the asparagus soup or the Sedona Tortilla Soup. An innovative soup selection offered is the two in one option which allows customers to combine two soups so that they are served next to each other in the same soup bowl. Light eaters also enjoy a plethora of salad options. These include the Miso salad, Thai Crunch salad, Waldorf Chicken salad, and of course, Classic Caesar salad. An extensive dessert menu is also available, including strawberry cheesecake, tiramisu and key lime pie, among other favorites.
Today, California Pizza Kitchen can be found all over the United States. There are currently 230 separate California Pizza Kitchen locations. These locations are spread across 32 states, and in nine other countries, including China, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, the Philippines, Singapore, United Arab Emerates and South Korea.
A more recent innovation has bee California Pizza Kitchen ASAP kiosks that serve pizza in high traffic areas such as malls and airports. Currently, the 26 total California Pizza Kitchen ASAP kiosks are all located in California, but there are plans to open California Pizza Kitchen ASAP kiosks in other states as well.
California Pizza Kitchen occasionally offers printable coupons on their website. These coupons can be used at regular locations as well as California Pizza Kitchen ASAP kiosks. Typically the California Pizza Kitchens printable coupons apply only toward regular entrees (especially single serving pizzas) and not beverages, appetizers or desserts. A favorite regular promotion is the CPKids Birthday Club which allows children age 10 and younger to recieve a free meal during the month of their birthday.