EL SERENO — John McLellan was miserable in his banking job and looking for a change when he spotted a photo of a portable pizza oven on a trailer. That’s how he ended up leaving the corporate world five years ago to start a mobile catering business, serving up Neapolitan-inspired pizza from a portable brick oven. Now, McLellan is ready to open his first brick-and-mortar pizzeria in El Sereno.
An “Opening Soon” heralds the upcoming arrival of Fahrenheit LA into the former home of Cafecito in the 4700 block of Huntington Drive.
“I’ve been looking for a space since summer of last year,” said McLellan, who lives in Mount Washington. “It’s been difficult finding a place to not only serve in, but to park my trailer oven. I signed the lease a few days after I saw it. It’s absolutely perfect for what we’re doing. It also will satisfy the number one question I get on a daily basis – “Do you have a brick and mortar?'”
The new pizzeria will serve as a home base for McLellan as he travels between catering jobs and farmers’ markets as well as creating a new outlet for his pizzas. It will also help a lot when it comes to making dough. McLellan explais:“People love our dough, but since we work in such shifting environmental conditions here in SoCal, I have to change up the dough based on the forecast (for example, when it’s colder outside, I need to increase the starter and yeast to get the rise I need – it’s the opposite when it’s hot outside). With a fairly consistent ambient temperature and humidity in the new place, I can really dial in the formulation for consistent and beautiful results.”
In addition to expanding Fahrenheit LA’s pizza menu, the El Sereno restaurant will offer some salads, sides, and desserts. The restaurant is expected to open in a few weeks, maybe as soon as the end of March.
Fahrenheit LA will open at 4726 Huntington Dr. S.
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