Her name is Lola; she bakes the pizza.
Actually Lola is her great-grandmother's name but Cary Charbonniez claimed it for Lola's, the diminutive pizza restaurant she opened nearly five years ago in South Hills.
Demand for her artisan pizzas grows, but Charbonniez has no plans to expand her hours, the menu or her restaurant. When Charbonniez and her husband, Pierre, retuned to their native Charleston from Vermont, she opened Lola's, where the menu features creatively topped pizzas on her homemade dough served with fresh salads.
That's it. Oh, and a nice selection of beer, wines and tremendously popular house-made Sangria.
She opens at 4 p.m. for dinner only Tuesday through Sunday and stays open until the pizza dough runs out, usually around 9 or 10 p.m. Charbonniez credits the time she spent living in and attending culinary school in Vermont for influencing her laid-back approach to running a restaurant.
The well-trained and consistent staff knows the product well. They start making the dough at 11 a.m.
"I think part of our success is due to the energy you find here. We all appreciate the people who come here and choose to spend money here. They seem to appreciate the staff," she said. "We respect each other."
Charbonnez credits her staff with Lola's smooth operation, even during the chaotic time three years ago when she and Pierre welcomed the birth of their twin daughters, who were born nine weeks early.
"The kids totally switched it up," she said. "I'm still trying to find a balance. I'm very focused on both of them and Lola's."
This fall, Pierre embarked on a medical career, and is enrolled at the School of Osteopathic Medicine in Lewisburg.
This is no "Fresh, Hot, Ready" pizza. Repeat customers know the pace at Lola's is relaxed.