I never say “No” to an opportunity to go behind the scenes. I think it is a part of my insatiable appetite to see and know what is happening behind closed doors. Maybe that’s why I never let the kids close their room door at home. I just can’t take the suspense!
Well, after joining a new mommies network in the area, North Metro DC Mommies, a chapter of The Mommies Network, I jumped at the opportunity to take RJ and Rielle on my first outing with the group: a tour of California Pizza Kitchen (CPK).
I love California Pizza Kitchen. I wish I knew about it while in Cali at Stanford but I probably would never have lost my “Freshman 15” pounds. My favorite pizza was their Mango Tandoori Chicken. Unfortunately, it has been discontinued, so now, I always pick up a Jamaican Jerk Pizza when I am anywhere near their restaurant. Did I mention their garlic breadsticks? Wow! Oops, I digress. So, back to the tour.
The tour, part of their CPKids Program, was scheduled prior to opening for the day so our group was the only visitors there. YAY! Special access! Upon arrival, the manager already laid out individual pizza dough on aluminum foil for each child. There was also pizza sauce and freshly grated mozzarella cheese at each place setting. Our host began by asking the children to touch the uncooked dough. Luckily our North Metro DC Moms Coordinator had already squirted each child with more than enough hand sanitizer for the occasion. The kiddies loved poking holes and tossing the dough from one hand to another.
Don’t forget the pepperoni! And, Voila! A pepperoni pizza! Don’t eat it just yet!
Parents wrote each child’s name on their aluminum foil in order to identify their pizza. Of course, RJ wanted to write his own, which turned out to say J.R. since the R started too close to the edge. Gotta love it!
While the pizzas were cooking, we started our trip behind the scenes! The children watched as the CPK team cut fresh lettuce and placed avocados in chicken wraps. They toured the deep freezer and laughed about seeing penguins while inside.
The dishwashing station was a hit. The host asked if they would like to put their hands in the basin full of water and they all let out a collective “Eeeeewwwww.” The last stop was the wood-fired oven where they watched as the final pizzas cooked.
RJ found a spot in a booth with his new friends and waited for “J.R.” to be called. He was excited by his creation but convince they took off some of his pepperoni! LOL Nonetheless, he ate it up and even shared some crust with his little sister.
These tours are available at CPK’s across the country so book one at a location near you: http://www.cpk.com/cpkids/programs/ (Did I mention that it was FREE?)
The next time your little one sees a California Pizza Kitchen, you will have created a memory in them for life! Thanks to the North Metro DC Mommies for such a great outing and the warm welcome for this newbie!