They Had Us At Boucherie!

GREENVILLE, SC -- When a friend put Hileri and Brian Mercier in touch with Louisiana based Pizza Artista, it was love at first taste. Ironically, Brian never really cared for pizza, but the award-winning, six-year-old, family-friendly franchise changed that for him in just a few bites. The Greenville couple is set to open the first location outside Louisiana, on June 3, in a 2,400-square-foot space in the Forest Park Shopping Center on Pleasantburg Drive.

"The kids and I have always been pizza fans, but Pizza Artista takes things to a different level with their Cajun chef-inspired pizzas. When Brian tasted the Boucherie, a combination of boudin, crumbled crackling and other savory flavors with a drizzling of Cajun syrup on top, he knew we'd found something remarkable," Hileri Mercier explains. "It's just so different! It's a crave-able pizza!"

Other Cajun creations in the Pizza Artista lineup include the Macque Choux and the Swamp Daddy -- pizzas that meat lovers will be drawn to. But the menu also includes traditional Italian pizza, BBQ chicken pizza, another loaded with Asian flavors, and a veggie pizza with Mediterranean ingredients. Or, as the branding proudly suggests, customers can create their own masterpiece by selecting from more than 50 ingredients and toppings.

"Even with our traditional Italian pizzas, fresh ingredients are the key to these recipes," according to the Merciers, "and the Pizza Artista traditional crust is amazing, plus it's also available in whole wheat, cauliflower or gluten-free. Part of the franchise requirement is that the crusts are made fresh every day."

"Brian will continue his work in insurance," explains Mercier who has left her career in
human resources, "but Pizza Artista will be my full-time focus along with our manager,
Jacob Cook, a Clemson grad with both financial and fast food experience in his

Other unusual concepts for a fast casual pizza restaurant are the 16-tap craft beer wall
customers operate with an electronic card and the touch-free hand-washing station.
t 337 235 2416 / f 337 237 5445 / / 119 East Main Street / Lafayette, Louisiana 70501

As part of their family-friendly environment, Pizza Artista will offer fundraising events for
area schools. "It's a way to engage with families and give back to our community," adds

The creators of Pizza Artista began the franchise in 2015 in Lafayette, Louisiana, each with
more than 30 years of experience in multi-unit pizza operations. The original store was
profitable within one year and two more locations soon followed with another set to open in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

In short order, Pizza Artista won awards from a variety of media outlets and resources such as Trip Advisor and Yelp, and has been named to the Top 10 Best Restaurants in Louisiana by National Elite, a culinary industry ranking system.

"Greenville does not have anything like this," says Mercier, "and we know that Cajun flavors hold a lot of appeal. Plus, there's something here for everyone including salads, pasta bread bowls, and chicken wings.

"I think our city will fall in love with a dish called the Squealin' Mac. It's a pasta bread bowl of cheddar cheese macaroni topped with Cajun tasso, bacon and garlic butter. We're so
excited for everyone to try it.

"As they say in Cajun Country, 'Y'all come see!'"

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