Photo Gallery | Hot pizza comes to Savoy
SAVOY — Time was, the nearest place to get fresh, hot pizza was in Adams — a 20-plus minute ride down the mountain.
Take it to go, and by the time the pizza makes it back up into Savoy, it's warm at best.
Michelle and Keith Kupiec, the new owners of the Savoy Hollow General Store, have begun selling fresh-cooked pizza every weekend for the 750 or so Savoy residents and those who pass through.
"Pizza was non-existent up here," said Emile Mazur, a 40-year resident of Savoy and regular customer of the general store. "We used to have to go downtown (to Adams) to get it. Now it's real convenient and they do a great job cooking it. I really enjoy the place and I think it's going to be a boon to the town."
Mazur says his favorite is "the works" with pepperoni, sausage and hamburger.
On pretty much any day of the week, the Savoy Hollow General Store is a gathering spot for locals, who come in for breakfast and linger over coffee and newspapers. Michelle Kupiec and her co-worker Regina Miner know just about everyone who stops by.
Kupiec, a 13-year resident of Savoy, had her eyes on the store for a couple of years, which is when she told the previous owners, Al and Gale Carlow, to let her know if they ever wanted to sell the business.
Last September, Kupiec got that call.
So they bought the business, came up with a leasing arrangement to rent the space from the Carlows, who retain ownership of the building and property, and took over the operation on Jan. 1.
Kupiec said that from the beginning, she wanted to start selling pizza there. So they renovated the kitchen space, bought a conveyor belt baking oven, the ingredients and the frozen raw pizza dough and started banging out pizzas.
"We knew it was something Savoy needed," Kupiec said. "Now, all we hear is 'Wow! There's hot pizza on the mountain. That's incredible.' "
The first weekend they tried it, they sold 53 pizzas. Since then they have been averaging about 40 pies per weekend.
And if there is any thawed out pizza dough left over, they'll serve pizza on Monday, Kupiec said.
Since starting up the pizza menu, they've gotten some strange requests, including a Polish pizza — with sliced kielbasa, horseradish, sauerkraut, roasted garlic Parmesan and white cheddar.
"We had a customer ask for it — he brought in some of his homemade horse radish — and we made it for him," Kupiec said. "He was ecstatic."
Since then they've added shrimp Alfredo pizza to the list, which already includes a variety of ingredients such as onions, peppers, tomatoes, ham, bacon, pineapple and spinach.
Even anchovies, which Kupiec avoids with a passion. She lets Miner handle the salty little fishes.
"I won't look at them, I won't touch them. Regina does all that," she said, with Miner chuckling behind her.
Oh, and the store also is now selling cold beer to help wash down that hot pizza — it acquired a liquor license in February allowing the sale of beer, wine and spirits.
The general store offers breakfast, and serves up sandwiches, grinders, calzones, burgers and hot dogs, among other things.
The store also serves as a local market, with a wide variety of goods, including locally made maple syrup and home made clothes, toys and hats. Also available are anything from cake mix to nail files to live bait.
Now that there's pizza, many locals call in before leaving work and then stop in on their way home for a Friday night pie.
"They'll call from Adams and pick up a pie on their way back from work, and they'll have hot pizza when they get home," Miner said. "And that's the big thing — it's hot."
If you go ...
What: Savoy Hollow General Store
Where: 668 Main Road (Route 116), Savoy
Hours: Sun.-Mon, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Tue.-Thu., 7 a.m. - 7 p.m.; Fri.-Sat., 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.