Patricia Vocella opened Luigi’s in Longford with her husband, Peter, twenty years ago, and two years ago they opened another takeaway in town, also Luigi’s. Customers appreciate “the whole experience – fresh, home-made food, warm service, the daily papers to read”
Name? Name of Business? Patricia Vocella, Luigi’s
When did you open there? We’re 20 years business this year. And two years ago we opened another place, also Luigi’s, on the other side of town. I’m from a fast-food background – I started helping my parents in their place when I was ten, so it’s in my blood.
What kind of services do you offer customers? We’ve a seating area for forty people. We do online ordering via Flipdish. We’re open 12 midday until 1.30am Monday to Thursday, and until 4am Friday to Saturday.
How many staff do you employ? About 15 between the two places. We like to work with our staff and alongside them. It’s not about us standing here and dictating. We’re big into team work.
What, in your opinion, makes your place unique to your customers? It’s the whole experience. Our food is fresh made and we try and use Irish produce. Our service is great – there is a warm welcome for everyone. We have daily papers that people can read while they eat. So it’s the whole package that people like.
What do you most like about the job? I really like that we have such a great relationship with our customers. We’re here so long, we’re part of the community
What’s your busiest time? Tea-time at the weekends is busy and summer is always busier.
What’s the biggest challenge facing you in business at the moment? The rates have just doubled, and we can’t pass that on to the customer. It’s tough
What is competition like in the area? Yes there’s competition. It just means we have to keep our standards high. Our quality always has to be top, you can’t let yourselves down. I hope customers realise that,
Is there anything the government could be doing to make your life easier? They could give us something for free! never pull back, barely half a day off a week
If you could invite someone famous to dinner who would it be? Maybe Gordon Ramsey
What does it take to do your job successfully? It takes a lot of dedication! We barely get to take off half a day a week.
What’s your business motto? Get stuck in, roll up your sleeves
WHAT’S ON THE MENU:
What’s your best-selling menu item? 2Fm nominated us for best chips. We have a great reputation for our fries. Also the southern fried chicken does well
What’s new on your menu? We recently added the prime burger, which is doing really well
How do you promote new menu items? We use Facebook, and we leaflet.
Do you do online ordering? Yes, we have an app with Flipdish. It’s really starting to move now, getting better and better..
How many meal deals do you do? Loads of meal deals – the saving is between 30c and 60c. We also have a eurosaver menu during the day.
Is there anything unique to your menu? We make all our own sauces, we don’t use MSG, and our pizzas are home-made. In general we like to use Irish products.