• Straw Hat Pizza no longer sweet on sourdough

    Tags: Dough

SAN RAMON, Calif.—Declining sales of its Sourdough Crust Pizza have pushed Straw Hat Pizza to drop it from its menu.

According to a news release, Kevyn Johnston, spokesperson for the 50-unit chain, said the decision to dump the dough after nearly 25 years wasn't easy.

"We know that many of our long-time guests will have strong feelings about the change," said Johnston. "But we know tastes evolve, and today's guests are looking for something new."

Knowing it would stop selling sourdough eventually, Straw Hat rolled out a pizza last year it calls "DaPan." So far, said Johnston, customers love it. "Da Pan is out-performing our best expectations."

So far in 2004, systemwide sales are up nearly 10 percent; a fifth of Straw Hat restaurants are reporting double-digit sales increases.

"We put a substantial amount of our advertising resources behind this new product; we hoped for the best, and we hoped it was good enough to replace the Sourdough," said Johnston. "However no one expected these kinds of sales."

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