Meet Robert, Founder of Base Artisan Pizzas

With over 20 years of experience as a chef, food lover Robert decided to launch his own venture after the first lockdown. For his business Robert wanted to focus on what he loves to cook and eat the most… PIZZA 🍕 Base Artisan Pizzas was born! 

Discover Robert’s story, his passion for traditional artisan pizzas and catering for weddings and outside events.

Hey Robert 👋 We’re so glad to chat to you on National Pizza Day! Can you introduce yourself? 

Robert in uniform 🍕

Hi, I am Robert Muir and I am the owner of Base Artisan Pizzas. I’ve been a chef for around 20 years working in lots of different environments from fine dining to running a string of cafes and restaurants which has helped sculpt me into the chef I am today. I have a passion for the finest quality products and transforming them as little as possible to let the ingredients do the talking.

You have had very diverse experiences in your career, what motivated you to launch Base?

During the first lockdown, I was wondering what I could do to start working for myself, I soon realised by chatting to others that with all the weddings and events being postponed there was an opportunity to get my name out there. I began to put a business plan together and did some calculations to see what we could acquire each month to try and get the ball rolling. Once I had all the equipment, I just needed customers so my girlfriend Caitlin joined me to manage our social media profiles as this is something I am not particularly good at. (Check out Base Artisan Pizzas Instagram and Facebook)

We landed our first event last June: a stag do! We took a lot of pictures and shared them on our social channels. From that day on, whatever event we did we seemed to get booked for another. Caitlin is amazing at the social media side of things and these days  it’s one of the most important contributors to our success.

The pizzas you made for these events look amazing! Like many of our members, you chose to create a business during the pandemic. What has been your biggest challenge/doubt since you started?

 Our biggest challenge since starting  the business was the uncertainty of covid and being able to get our produce from Italy in time. Covid paired with Brexit was a bit of a juggling act. However, all this does is make you look at taking these variables out of your business. We have had to source similar products from the UK making sure we kept  the same level of quality. It turned out to be better for the environment as well. I didn’t have any doubts about setting the business up as I was so excited I had worked for a long time to reach this moment, I knew it was time. People ask if I wish I had done it earlier and my answer is simply no…..things happen when they are supposed to. 

We are so glad you did! The world is definitely a better place with Base Artisan Pizzas in it! What do you love most about being a small business owner?

The things I love most about running my own small business is the hustle and bustle of sourcing suppliers for the best products and interacting with customers. Especially brides and grooms! It is the biggest most important day to these people and they have chosen you for it.

You must have done quite a few events now! Do you have a favourite in mind?

I really enjoy doing weddings as we have not only done the evening buffet but I feel people are looking for a more relaxed theme these days. I love building relationships with brides and grooms and working with them to create their perfect menu for the big day. You leave feeling like you have had a big impact on their lives. And you have usually made some friends too. 

Your business story is really inspiring and your passion infectious! Do you have any top tips for other business owners or those looking to start up their own business in the food and catering industry?

My advice to anyone starting out themselves is do your research and then just give it your all. Listen to others and make friends in your field. In the food traders industry it’s a close knit community and we are all willing to help.

Between the sourcing of the products and clients as well as the events’ organisation, it must be very busy! How do you keep organised? 

From being a chef to then delving into the world of running my own business was a bit daunting. When looking for a business bank account to keep my finances in order and help make invoicing more streamlined and professional, I sought advice from other small business owners, as well as looked online for the best business bank account to suit my needs. That’s when I found Tide. I believe you should always stick to what you are good at or get the best people to look after what you can’t do yourself and I think I have found that with Tide. When reaching out to the support team, no question is too big or small and everything has been first class so far.

That’s fantastic to hear! What is your favourite Tide feature that really helps with the running of your business?

With Tide I love the whole experience. It’s very clean and simple to use. I use the invoicing tool the most. It is very simple to build your invoice and to be able to send and keep track of it all from start to finish. I love that Tide tracks what you’re spending and categorises it. It makes my life a lot easier and gives me more time to spend on what I’m good at. 

Valentine Hutchings

Valentine Hutchings

Head of Community and small business enthusiast

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