Pacific Northwest grocer Quality Food Centers (QFC), a division of The Kroger Co., and Tutta Bella Neapolitan Pizzeria, a popular Seattle Neapolitan pizzeria chain, have teamed to open a counter service-style Tutta Bella location inside QFC’s high-volume University Village location in Seattle.
The “grocerant” location is the second of its kind, with the first opening last year inside QFC at the Kirkland Urban development. The expected Nov. 2 opening also marks a continuation of a multi-layered partnership between the two companies, which also includes a complete line of grab-and-go items and take-home dinner options currently offered in more than 30 of QFC’s stores around the Puget Sound area.
Bellevue, Wash.-based QFC operates 62 stores in western Washington and in Portland, Ore.
“We are excited to continue and expand our partnership with Tutta Bella,” said Chris Albi, president of QFC. “The Q has a passion for supporting the best local products to provide our customers with quality food experiences and Tutta Bella is a great partner that aligns with our purpose of Feeding the Human Spirit.”
“QFC is a fantastic partner for us,” said Joe Fugere, owner of Tutta Bella. “From the very start in 2019, the entire QFC team has been such a resource for us and their support has only grown stronger over the past six months. They’ve truly shown us the definition of partnership during these unprecedented times and we’re so grateful.”
Similar to the Tutta Bella at Kirkland Urban, the new location features a true wood-burning oven and will offer the same high-quality imported and locally sourced ingredients that Tutta Bella serves at its five neighborhood restaurants and mobile food truck. The menu will be highlighted by Tutta Bella’s wood-fired Neapolitan pizzas, along with made-to-order sandwiches, fresh salads and authentic Sicilian cannoli.
In addition, Tutta Bella will debut its very first Take-n-Bake pizza, which will be offered exclusively at the new University Village location.
“We’ve been talking about a Take-n-Bake option for some time, but it wasn’t until QFC showed their support that we decided to invest the resources needed to develop a high-quality product that we can be extremely proud of,” said Fugere. “We want customers to get the real Tutta Bella pizza experience when they bring this pizza home, and it was important for us to be able to make these by hand, using the very same ingredients we use in the restaurants.”
The Tutta Bella space has been designed by the Seattle-based firm Graham Baba Architects, the team behind local projects such as Chophouse Row, Melrose Market and the Deep Dive Bar inside Amazon’s Spheres. The space is designed around the oven and will emphasize natural materials such as walnut and blackened steel.
“Since 1956, we have been a local community grocer and everything we do is about paying homage to that history of Pacific Northwest culinary expertise,” said Albi. “The new University Village store will be a premier food store and this partnership with Tutta Bella will greatly enhance our customers’ experience.”