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A hero’s origin story
Picture this. It’s the year 1940 something, it’s a hot summer in Detroit and the air is thick. A tired car mechanic is exhausted from a long day’s work in the heat. He could kill for a pizza. He fantasises about going to his local pizzeria but doesn’t think only one pizza will even nearly satisfy his hunger. And so, the Legend goes, as he finishes emptying the oil from his large, deep rectangle blue steel tray, he has an idea. How about a pizza made this thick? Made from this pan!
And this is how Detroit Pizza was born. Well…almost.
The pizza was developed in 1946 at Buddy's Rendezvous, a pizza restaurant in Detroit. The pans were originally the blue steel pans used by mechanics in the motor city to drain oil, and store their nuts and bolts.
The Detroit-style pizza was popular throughout the Detroit area but until the 2010s was not often found at restaurants outside the area. In 2011 two Detroit brothers opened a Detroit-style pizza restaurant in Austin, Texas. In 2012, a New York restaurateur created a pizza he called "Detroit-style" using focaccia dough, mozzarella, and ricotta.
And thus, “Detroit-style” Pizza started growing across the US.
The growth was so fast, it attracted the attention of the premium pan makers, Lloyd Pans. Known for their innovation and precision, Lloyd pans adopted the Detroit style pans.
Meanwhile across the pond. As interest grew in America, a few revolutionary Brits were adopting the technique but were struggling to source the pans. Looking for help, these experimental chefs took to social media in hopes of finding the best equipment.
This is where our forward-thinking Whites team first heard about the pizza. Eager to solve the problem, our team contacted already familiar suppliers Lloyd Pans. In 2019, Whites made their first order of 8x10 inch and 10x14 inch pans.
As predicted, pizzerias and pizzaioli’s across the UK fell in love with Detroit Pizza. Due to the fresh and tasty Detroit pizza recipe, along with the incredible design of the Lloyd pans. The special PSTK coating makes baking easy peasy, and the convenient sizing of 8x10 inch and 10x14inch were easy to add to menus for many restaurants and quickly became customer favourites. And when the world closed for the pandemic and the wave of the “pandemic pizza” emerged, we saw many new Detroit pizza businesses open.
Nowadays, there are a growing number of pizzerias across the UK who have Detroit Pizza as their staple Pizza Style.
You may have already visited some of our Detroit pan loving customers, the powerhouse of Detroit Pizza London, the very trendy Ramona in Manchester, or the brilliant Bad Boy Pizza Society in various parts of the country.
If you find yourself munching on the crispy cheese edges of a sauce loaded Detroit pizza anytime soon, just know that Lloyd Pan probably made its way from our very own Whites Warehouse.