Healthy, Quick-Service Food at Pita Pit
By Sue Todd
Glacier City Gazette
Fast food is just that – fast. If you have hungry children with busy schedules, fast food is often the answer. Just pop in and within minutes, dinner is sorted. Hamburgers, submarine sandwiches, fried chicken and Mexican style food – all just minutes from being on the table. But there’s usually a twinge of guilt because it might not be the best choice.
Pita Pit is a healthier option. At the Pit, get a quick-service, healthier version of your favorites to eat in or to go. There are many pita or salad options. American Classics like Buffalo Chicken, Philly Cheese Steak, or club, as well as more exotic options like souvlaki, gyro or falafel are on the menu. To save time, order online at www.pitapitusa.com. You can even use the online calculator to learn the calories, allergens, and nutritional facts about your choice.
Pita Pit has been going strong in Alaska since 2012, and there are no signs of that changing. I was curious about how he came to own the franchise, so I sat down with Owner William (Billy) St. Pierre and asked him to share how it transpired. He told me that shortly after graduating college, while visited Portland, he first discovered Pita Pit. He was so taken with the food that he ate it multiple times during his stay. A light bulb moment had him calling his dad in Fairbanks to pitch the idea of opening a Pita Pit, but his dad immediately said no. He had already had a bad experience with a different franchise and was loath to try another one.
Life went on, and Billy worked at a sports agency hoping to become an NHL agent, but before long he realized he was not cut out for the work. So, it was off to graduate school for him. He obtained his MBA from UAA while working in various restaurants. Upon completion, he started a career doing contract work for Department of Defense.
At the tender age of 25, he reached the conclusion that he despised deskwork. He realized that happiness is much more important than making a living doing something you hate, that taking a gamble was a better choice than working for the “man.”
Not much later, on a trip back from Washington D.C., he stopped in Bozeman, Mont. for a visit with his sister. There he rediscovered Pita Pit, and he wondered how it was that Montana had a Pita Pit, but Alaska did not. He immediately contacted Pita Pit to inquire about a franchise, and within 15 months he opened his first store. His second one opened only eight months later. The speed with which he opened two Pita Pits was record-breaking.
St. Pierre is quite passionate about this franchise. In addition to his three Anchorage locations – Midtown, Southside, and Muldoon, he has opened shop in Fairbanks and is looking to open his newest store in Wasilla. His first two Anchorage stores were at one time the two highest grossing Pita Pits in the world. When he opened the third one, he owned the three highest grossing Pita Pits in the world. The economic crash has dropped him from those ranks, but it has not dampened his passion to deliver quick, fresh, delicious, healthy food.
His friendly staff is ready to serve once you enter the doors. Consistent product, clean stores and great customer service have been key factors in his success. Of his staff of 45 employees, about half have more than two years experience, and this speaks volumes. Happy, engaged employees have made for a great customer experience.
Not only does Pita Pit offer quick meals, there are also gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan options. Catering is also available, and orders should be placed by email at email@example.com. Pitas, salads, express lunches and fresh baked cookie orders can be customized to suit your catering needs.
Alaska Pita Pits are locally owned and operated and committed to community involvement. From Nov. 12-16, drop off three canned goods and get a free combo with the purchase of a pita. On Dec. 18, bring in an unwrapped toy for Toys for Tots and get a free pita.
Further, Alaska Pita Pit provides a $5,000 scholarship annually at UAA through the Pita Pit Entrepreneurship Program. Alaska Pita Pit is actively involvement in local youth hockey and soccer programs as well.
Stop in and taste unique menu items at the following locations and times.
Midtown Pita Pit, 600 E. 36th
Southside Pita Pit, 11108 Old Seward
Tikahtnu Pita Pit, 1130 N. Muldoon
All stores open Mon. – Sat. 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Sun. 11 a.m.-8 p.m.
Facebook: Pita Pit (Anchorage)