We Make It - You Bake It!
Author: Becca Dupps Edwards
March Madness does not need to bring mayhem to your home. Nor does Super Bowl Sunday need to be a super pain in the pigskin. No sir. Let it be known from this moment hence, sports fans far and wide can rest (or shout obscenities at the television screen) easy, in their favorite team’s jersey, on the plushest reclining piece of furniture known to man, doing what they do best: watching “the Game.”
Thanks to TJ’s Take and Bake, hungry Hilton Head Island sports fans can have their pie and eat it too with a custom made-to-order pizza that did not mean waiting for a delivery man. According TJ’s owner, Jay Conrad, his pizzeria delivers “quality and convenience” that’s so good you’ll want to gobble it up and then ask for more.
“TJ’s is great for pizza lovers from all walks of life,” said Conrad. “Being on Hilton Head, I get to see how people from New York, Chicago, California, Oklahoma and, of course, Ohio enjoy our product. The nature of our product gives the consumer so much more flexibility in their daily life yet does not sacrifice any of the quality you expect from your neighborhood pizzeria. Pizza is at its best when it comes right out of the oven, and that is what you get every time with TJ’s.”
At TJ’s, the pie’s the limit. “We offer over thirty toppings from the traditional stuff to fresh spinach, kalamata olives, grilled & BBQ chicken and fresh pineapple,” said Conrad. If you are not already wiping the drool from your mouth or dreaming of deliciousness, just wait. There’s more.
“The most unique pie I ever made was very good,” said Conrad. “It had sliced granny smith apples, sharp cheddar cheese, and bacon on a traditional red sauce and mozzarella cheese base. It was excellent—a sweet and savory kind of thing.”
Conrad admits his favorite is still probably pepperoni, stating confidently, “It is hands down the best pepperoni pie you can get.” And the proof is in the pie crust, as well as the ingredients. “We prepare everything fresh daily,” said Conrad. “>From our dough, to our sauce, to shredding all of our cheeses in house, chopping all of the veggies and even picking all of the little stems off the spinach. Our recipes have been carefully crafted so that consumers gets the best possible product when they get home. We even ‘slow rise’ our dough for 72 hours to ensure the highest quality pizza crust.”
Located near the Sea Pines circle, TJ’s has risen to the top and stayed there for several years. “Believe it or not,” said Conrad, “TJ’s has been anchoring Starbucks for more than four years now.” Hundreds of pizzas and hundreds more happy bellies later, Conrad has learned some valuable business principles. In order to be successful, Conrad said a business must pay attention to locals and not take customers for granted. “I truly enjoy my regular clientele and always try to listen to their comments. They all have great ideas; I just wish I could implement all of them,” he said.
Conrad stresses the importance of “going the extra mile and making it better.” He describes his regular clientele as amazing. “The neat thing is that we have repeat tourists and part timers. Most of them consider themselves some type of regular,” he said.
TJ’s also takes the time to reach out and help those in need. The pizzeria has been working with a local non-profit organization called RowKids (www.rowkids.org) to help raise money for a mission trip to Belize. According to Conrad, “[RowKids] provides a means for many of the children there to get an education and better their lives. It is an excellent organization and, in association with the Methodist church, has raised the funds by selling pizza certificates where a portion of the proceeds go to fund the mission trip.”
When asked what the trick is to making the perfect pizza, Conrad said, “The trick to baking a delicious pizza is picking up a TJ’s pie and baking it the way you like it, right in your own home oven.”
*TJ’s Take and Bake
Palmetto Bay Road