Earlier this month, the St. Johnsbury storefront that housed Ramunto's Brick Oven Pizza became Kingdom Crust Co. And the new pizzeria's owners have built their menu on ingredients that are as fresh and local as possible.
"We kind of figured that, if we're going to be serving junk food, it might as well be the cleanest junk food possible," Kingdom Crust owner and Caledonia County native Mike Heath tells Seven Days.
Heath is working with local farms, including Peacham's Willow Brook Farm and soon, he hopes, Joe's Brook Farm in Barnet. Until he finds the right local meat vendor, Kingdom Crust is using whole hams, turkey breasts and chickens for its deli sandwiches, such as a King of the North sub that tops turkey, apples, bacon and Cabot cheddar with drizzled apple cider vinaigrette.
Though some menu items, such as fried boneless wings and mozzarella sticks, don't totally jive with the fresh-food ethic, Heath says he's using GMO-free sunflower oil instead of soy or canola oils. Pizza crusts are made with unbleached, unbromated flour from Norwich-based King Arthur Flour, while takeout packaging is now compostable and made with recycled materials.
Heath says the menu is still a work in progress, given that he's sorting out the logistics of local sourcing, which requires more legwork than ordering from a national purveyor. But he's been able to keep prices consistent, and he's serving food that aligns with his values. "I dig the idea of supporting the local economy and making healthier food," Heath says. "It's sort of key to Vermont's future, for sure."
All the beers are local, too.