Patrick Schwarzenegger Opens Blaze Pizza Restaurant in L.A.
But the 20-year-old college student and former model has also been hard at work putting together his latest business venture: a location of build-your-own-pie chain Blaze Pizza.
The restaurant, located at The Grove outdoor shopping mall in L.A., had a line three stores down on Thursday, only one day after its grand opening. “Today we have free pizza all day,” Schwarzenegger told PEOPLE, adding that his mom, Maria Shriver, was there helping to make sure everything ran smoothly.
Though he was happy to receive advice from his parents, Schwarzenegger raised the money for the project himself. “We went around and did a raise of capital,” he says. “It’s been my responsibility to oversee everything. I’m the owner, founder, pizza maker, pizza lover and anything else you want to throw on in there.”
Blaze is, essentially, a Chipotle-model for pizzerias: the customer walks down an assembly line choosing everything for a custom-made pizza, from the type of dough — “We have a gluten free option,” Schwarzenegger says — to the type of sauce, cheese, and an array of toppings that include pepperoni, roasted peppers, artichokes, mushroom, olives, chicken, onion and garlic.
Once you choose your toppings, the pizza is cooked in three minutes in an 800-degree wood-fired oven. The entire process, from lining up to taking the first bite, takes less than ten minutes.
Schwarzenegger says Blaze’s pies aren’t as filling as other pizzas on the market. “I’m not really going to have to put extra time at the gym because this pizza is super thin. I’ve eaten five of these in the last two days,” he says, laughing. His favorite pizza is the “regular crust with our red sauce and ovaline mozzeralla cheese. Then I put [on] sausage and pepperoni. I’m a meat lover!”
“The most expensive pizza is $7.95,” he adds. “We wanted everybody to come have a pizza, get a drink and pay with a ten dollar bill.”
Father Arnold wasn’t able to show up for free pizza day, but his business acumen has been a part of the younger Schwarzenegger’s life since he was a kid.
“My dad would have me go and run his charity booth at his body building contest in Columbus, Ohio when I was 8 years old,” he says. “I would sell a poster for $50 and learn ‘How much did that cost?’ and ‘What’s the wholesale, what’s the retail?’ … I’ve always been into [an] entrepreneurial lifestyle. [My dad] encouraged me and so does the rest of my family with everything I do.”