Mike Shapiro and his company, Sgt. Peppers, is the pinnacle example of how a change of career didn’t stop him from giving back and making great food for his community – as well as generating revenue for himself!
Prior to starting life with my Fire Within Wood Burning Oven, I was a first responder. I spent 7 years as a medic and then 30 years in law enforcement with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Dept. I retired 3 years ago as a sergeant. I had been attending food shows for several years with my brother who is a chef. After finishing culinary school towards the end of my career, I was looking for something to do in retirement. That’s when I met Ajith. (Ajith is the owner of Fire Within)
I attended the wood fired university and fell in love with the oven! Growing up in New Jersey, pizza was a big part of our food culture. I took a chance with purchasing an oven and the rest is history!
Mike briefly describes how he has managed to continue to generate revenue during pandemic restrictions.
I had lost a few catering jobs during the pandemic. That’s when I decided to try a drive-thru (like a curbside pick-up) event. The drive-thru nights have become so popular that I have been invited to other neighborhoods to cook. Until the restrictions on gatherings are lifted, we will be continuing the drive-thru events and cooking for staff at the county jails.