A PAIR of pizza-loving brothers are setting off on a pilgrimage to Italy to pick up some classic cooking tips before launching a quirky street-vending venture.
James and Thom Elliot are fed up with a nine to five office existence and are determined to cash in on the street-selling food craze sweeping the capital.
The Hammersmith pair plan to sell traditional Italian pizzas served fresh from a custom-made pizza oven in the back of a three-wheeler Piaggio Ape.
But before they launch their new business, they are flying out to the southern Italian town of Reggio Calabria to pick up their new vehicle.
With a top speed of just 40mph, they will drive the 2,000 miles back to London followed by a camera crew and immersing themselves in the culture, history and traditions that go into making the perfect pizza.
James, 24, of Brook Green and who works for a television production company, said: “The idea of the street vendor has been growing in London in the past 18 months and follows the success in places like Los Angeles and New York City.
“We both love pizza and settling down to life in a suit and an office is not really appealing to us. So it is a great chance to take a gamble and try to break into the market.
“People in Italy take pizza-making extremely seriously and it is like a religion out there. We really want to tap into the different techniques and recipes used and bring it all back to England.”
James and 28-year-old brother Thom, an accounts director from Brackenbury Village, will post a daily video blog of their trip and expect to return to W6 by November 4.
Their exploits will also be turned into an eight-part series filmed by Rampage Productions.
“We are looking at three to four weeks depending on breakdowns or any problems with the Ape,” said James. “Whether it is on the back of a van or makes it on its own, it will be coming back with us.
“Then it will be time to come up with some sort of business plan. To be honest, at the moment it involves parking up and cooking pizzas.
“There is a bit of a grey area in terms of where and when you can park up and sell food but we want to target food markets and festivals first and go from there.”
To follow their trip visit www.twitter.com/pizzapilgrims or www.facebook.com/pizzapilgrims.