In the words of co-owner Kayla Abe, Shuggie’s Trash Pie in San Francisco’s Mission District is a “colorful neighborhood party spot” that serves pizza made with upcycled ingredients.
“We use things that would otherwise go to waste,” she told The Standard at Outside Lands early on Sunday afternoon. “Like cosmetically irregular produce.”
Judging by how much dough Shuggie’s staff had gone through already, Abe estimated that the shop’s tent—in a choice location near the Lands End Stage—would crank out enough to feed 2,000 people over the weekend. As Shuggie’s portions are half a pizza each, that’s 1,000 pizzas altogether, including Cheddah & Feta, the Sausage Party and Bobo’s the Pep, the Roni—a fancy way of saying good old pepperoni.
That adds up to about $70,000 in revenue—of which Outside Lands takes 35%. Much of the rest goes to rental equipment, water, gas and electric.
“Hopefully, we’re going to take away $20,000 in business,” Abe said. “I’d be happy with $15,000.”
August is a tough time of the year for most restaurants, and last August—when Shuggie’s neon-hued brick-and-mortar was still comparatively new on the scene—was a dead zone. So Abe and her partner in life and work, David Murphy, closed up shop for the weekend to work Outside Lands instead, in a tent they inherited from the iconic San Francisco pizza chain Escape from New York.
It makes sense for a restaurant committed to minimizing kitchen waste to pop up at a festival that boasts about its trash diversion every year.
“I like how much information they share about keeping it a low-waste event,” Abe said. “They really make sure all of the volunteers and the staff are really aware that, you know, they're doing their part.”
So far, she said, pepperoni is far outselling the other pizzas. The Sausage Party may be the most adventurous, culinarily speaking, with sausage, onion, olive, upcycled vodka whey sauce, grape must (a byproduct of winemaking, which adds aromatics and a bit of tannins) and guanciale, or cured pork jowl.
Still, Outside Lands is a festival filled with shawarma and fries. Did anyone who wasn’t already familiar with guanciale freak out after Abe told them they were eating pig cheek?
“Luckily not, but I like when people ask those questions,” she said. “But yeah, we're like, slowly indoctrinating.”
Astrid Kane can be reached at email@example.com