Who are you? GB Pizza Co.
Why Margate? The light, the promise, progress, the people, the sea and that sky.
How do you define style? Being true to yourself rather than blindly following trends.
If you were an animal, what would you be? A Great Dane.
Favourite food? Anything that’s been prepared with care, simply, using seasonal, great quality ingredients. Lisa has a weakness for proper Birmingham baltis and roast dinners. Rachel’s go-to dish is a rib-eye steak with homemade béarnaise sauce.
Object of desire? Anglepoise lamps, Plumen lightbulbs, neon, polished concrete, kitchen gadgetry.
Favourite place to think? At a good restaurant with an old-fashioned notepad and a large glass of wine.
Favourite Shop? In Margate: It’s amazing that there are so many to choose from. Design-wise we love Fontaine Decorative (who helped us find amazing pieces for the restaurant), Paraphernalia, Qing Art, Margate Retro, Junk Deluxe, Margate Gallery and Blackbird. There are so many more. We’re very lucky. Elsewhere: Jonathan Adler in Chicago; Liberty in London; Maison 3 Garcons in Shoreditch; Something Different, Orlando.
What building would you like to be locked in overnight? Can we take items away? If so, Selfridges. If not, a penthouse suite in Claridge’s.
Where do you go for a nightcap? Friday night at Fort’s is our weekly ritual: a bottle of their English red wine and one of their delicious burgers is our idea of the perfect nightcap.
What would buy if you won the lottery? Arlington House. We’d turn it into a mid-century-filled five-star hotel with a rotating rooftop wood-fired pizza restaurant.
What do you collect? Jonathan Adler-esque owls, paperweights, memories.
Who are your heroes? Hero is a strong word. We admire the work and vision of Jonathan Ives and Tyler Brûlée. Heroes are the everyday people that fight injustice and fight for what’s true and right.
Best and worst thing about your renovation experience? Best: that we managed to find an amazing team and, of course, the end result. It’s exactly how we saw it. Worst: the DUST. And dealing with bureaucracy and computer-says-no officialdom.
First Margate memory? We first came here about 2 years ago. And we were amazed by the architecture and the quality of the buildings.
Biggest extravagance? For the restaurant, it’s been lighting and the best pizza oven that money can buy. Other than that, extravagances come in the shape of travel and interiors items.
Best advice you’ve been given? To only listen to positive people. If only we had a Pound for every time someone told us we were mad or being too hasty or taking too much of a risk.
Why Pizza? Apart from the fact that pizza is the most widely eaten food in the world… Rachel is a chef and we used to own a gastropub together. We were looking for a new venture that involved feeding people delicious food in a creative way, but without the ridiculous hours, risks and ties that come with a traditional restaurant. We saw the “gourmet fast food” movement gathering pace in London – pop up eateries, street food vans and restaurants serving fantastic quality, good value food quickly and without frills – and thought it made perfect sense for us.
Is Pizza better indoors or outdoors? Indoors in our new restaurant, of course! Although that idyllic spot on the Harbour Arm takes some beating which is why we’ll be opening it up again next summer as a pop-up.
What are your goals for 2013? To create a strong brand based on responsible ethics, quality food and friendly service in fantastic surroundings. And to open a second restaurant in East Kent before the summer season.
ROUND UP: Lisa & Rachel have an array of interesting lighting, furniture pieces, industrial walls & fittings. A very timely ‘Arlington’ sign is on display embracing the growing popularity of ‘pop architectural salvage’. The reclaimed vibe continues with vintage tubular framed chairs from Margate Retro, teamed with long trestle tables for dining and classic re-upholstered sofa from Fontaine perfect for enjoying incredible coffee (Shore Coffee UK) and the best brownies.
WHERE TO BUY: Fontaine Decorative, The Old Laundry, St Johns Road, Margate, CT9 1LU. www.fontainedecorative.com
The painting of the famous Henry is by Teddy Baden, www.teddybaden.co.uk
GB Pizza Co, 14a Marine Drive, Margate, Kent, CT9 1DH, www.greatbritishpizza.com
To take part in the Curio contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
All images ©Jo Willis