Joaquim Monera Carretey is preparing for his night shift at champion pizza joint Eldsmiðjan.
I don’t know what I had imagined when it comes to late night shifts at a pizzeria. Considering that Iceland’s outpost of the universal drunk food favourite McDonald’s went bankrupt during last decade’s economic crisis in Iceland, I guess I thought that people would queue for a cheesy pizza as an alternative to a cheeseburger in the wee small hours of a bar crawl.
But turns Joaquim experiences it as quite calm. “We got some regulars, of course,” he says. “There’s one guy, who repeatedly comes in during night shifts. He has a very characteristic way of dressing, and must be on something—alcohol, drugs, life, I don’t know. And he always orders one litre of Coca Cola. No pizza, always Coca Cola. There’s only been one time when he actually ordered a pizza. And then he didn’t want anything to drink with it instead. I was so confused. I still am.”
In the middle of our chat, an order request from the children’s hospital comes in. Then it hits me—home delivery! There must be some tidbits when it comes to that. The restaurant manager then tells me about one night few years back when he delivered to two drunk guys halfway passed out on a sofa, and one of them couldn’t even recall ordering pizzas: “Turns out neither one of them had any money. So they offered me an iPod instead.” The desperate things you do when the craving for pizza is larger than life…
He then continues, “Once we also had an offer of 100 ISK per topping so you could create your own mix. One guy ordered a pizza with fifteen toppings—it was crazy, but I mean we had to do it. Anchovy, ham, blue cheese, banana, pineapple to mention a few.” We all agreed that at least that person must’ve been trippin’.
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