Coming off Highway 1 on Sumas Way into Abbotsford, it’s hard not to notice the Me-N-Ed’s sign off to the right hand side. While those who grew up knowing and loving Me-N-Ed’s are walking in, the younger generation are driving right on by.
Me-N-Ed’s opened in Abbotsford in 2008 and the community showed a surge of interest. Excited patrons came in for pizza, a cozy environment and plenty of flatscreen TVs mounted on the walls. Their unique dough was a big hook as well; it’s made from scratch every morning, pressed in custom-made rollers and shaped by hand for a light and crispy thin-crust.
Nearly seven years later, assistant manager Chad Martens, server manager Kayleigh Klawitter and daytime manager Andreas Klawitter, sit around a table wondering why young people aren’t walking through the doors anymore.
It can all be traced back to first impressions.
The process of making Me-N-Ed’s quality dough is a tedious one that takes plenty of practice. Andreas candidly admits that there may have been some “imperfect crusts” at the beginning that turned some people away. He assures that has all changed.
“It’s good pizza, consistent pizza and the crust is unique,” says Andreas. “I grew up being a thick crust lover, so when I first tried this I was a bit hesitant but I have grown to love it.”
Take The Soprano pizza for instance. It has house-made garlic and herb sauce and capicola (spicy ham). The base cheese is mozzarella, then a cheese-blend (cheddar, Monterey Jack, provolone, and Parmesan) is added. Next comes some white onions before the pizza is cooked. When it comes out, the pie is topped with Bocconcini cheese and Roma tomatoes, fresh basil and pepper.
The Gangster is another favourite and a perfect fit for meat-lovers. It’s house-made tomato paste, the four-cheese blend, salami, capicola, pepperoni, mushroom, white onions and Italian sausage.
For the health conscious, Me-N-Ed’s offers a gluten-free crust and they have no qualms with customizing a pizza. Carnivores, herbivores, celiac and the gluten-intolerant are all welcome.
“We have quality ingredients,” adds Martens.
“And it’s not greasy, you don’t feel like you just ate a big pizza afterwards,” notes Kayleigh. “Plus, it’s similar to Boston Pizza prices.”
Me-n-Ed’s is an example of well-deserved redemption, because pizza is perfect for second helpings and second chances. Now it’s in the hands of the consumer. Are you curious to see if they’ve done enough to deserve a drop-in instead of a drive-by?
“Me-N-Ed’s has a lot more to offer than people think,” says Kayleigh.
If you buy six pizzas, you get the seventh free with one of their stamp cards, and they just set up an Instagram account where they periodically run contests to win a free pizza.
The trio sit in a booth throwing around other ideas on how to reintroduce Me-N-Ed’s to the community.
They agree that their success really comes down to three things: their quality pizza, their unique crust, and if Abbotsford is willing to give them a second chance at a first impression.
Me-n-Ed’s Restaurant – Abbotsford
Address: 2010 Sumas Way, Abbotsford
Hours: Monday to Thursday: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Friday and Saturday: 11 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
Sundays 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.