This harbor has been a tasty pizza haven in Seaside since Dave Moore opened it in 1979. For two years now the Marstons have served as captains, continuing the "old coast feel" that has made Pizza Harbor successful for nearly 30 years. Fresh, healthy ingredients and discounts for returning customers make mooring here a frequent occasion. The restaurant is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekends and from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekdays. For more information, call (503) 738-7210 or visit the Web site at www.pizzaharbor.com.
Tell us about this pizza business.
Elizabeth: "This is all family run, and we make fantastic pizza, sandwiches and salads. We think of this as old-school pizza. We use good, fresh and crispy ingredients and we provide a family atmosphere."
Erik: "We do not run a conveyer belt here and we do not have pizza by the slice but we do offer a small individual pizza. Everything is made fresh. We have a back room that is free to reserve for up to 50 people. This is great for family reunions, weddings, and birthday parties. We always put on the big game and people come here for sports parties. We have done a lot of remodeling to the bathrooms, kitchen and have fresh paint on the outside. We started delivery in Seaside a year ago."
How did you get into this business?
Elizabeth: "We moved here from Prineville. I worked at an insurance company and was raising three kids and Eric was a police officer. Eric decided he didn't want to do that for a lifetime and we always wanted to own a pizza place on the coast."
Erik: "So we sold our house and traveled the whole coast from the Long Beach peninsula to the California Redwoods."
Elizabeth: "We didn't find what we were looking for so we started back up the coast, headed for Long Beach. On the way, we made one more search on the Internet and saw Pizza Harbor for sale. Four days later, we were making pizza."
Erik: "We had never worked in food service so we learned from the original owner. There were a few hiccups along the way because there was a lot to learn. Dave was a big help to us."
How is business here?
Elizabeth: "Typically everything here is seasonal. Business has been good. We can't complain. June was slow and that had us worried this year, because of the economy, but it picked up nicely. People have been thriftier this year."
Erik: "People are coming in right now! Excuse me. I have to go make pizza."
Tell us about your products.
Elizabeth: "We make everything here from scratch. We use extra virgin olive oil. You can make pizza as healthy as you like it. We use a very good hickory smoked ham in our Hawaiian pizza. We have a Tahitian pizza with chicken, pineapple and linguisa, a veggie with olive, onion, mushroom, fresh green peppers and tomatoes. Our California Style is very special. It has four cheeses, artichoke, sundried tomatoes, walnuts, onion, green peppers, mushrooms and green olives topped with feta cheese. Our sandwiches are excellent. We offer a hot Philly cheese steak, a Meatball Grinder and our Harbor roast beef melt. In addition to these we offer garlic and cheese bread, Hot Wings and gourmet cookies. Our beverages include wine, domestic and premium brews."
Do you offer any specials?
Elizabeth: "We have what we call a 'loyalty card' also called the locals card. Fill up the card and get a free medium pizza. We also give 20 percent off to our local customers. This keeps our business going well during the winter. Also, go on our Web site and print out a Web coupon for a discount."
What is you biggest challenge running this pizza parlor?
Elizabeth: "The hardest is the never endness of the restaurant business and balancing work with family. The first year was tough but it has become a lot more manageable. Our children work here too. We wondered how we would work together. We are still married!"