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New kid-friendly DIY Pizza concept

I rarely recommend chains on Muddy, I believe you nearly always get better quality from a good independent. I thought it worth drawing your attention to this new pizza chain however because a) it’s a bit different, with a concept I think kids will love and b) it’s at Brighton Marina where, if you’re visiting for the day, you’ll find pretty much nothing but chains.

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MOD Pizza is an American buisness (the same guys behind Seattle Coffee Company) and the new Brighton Marina branch, opened just a couple of weeks ago, is only its second outlet in the UK.

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What’s a bit different is that you choose all your own toppings. Most pizza places will let you add in ingredients for extra cost and they’ll certainly take them away if you ask, but at MOD you literally create it all from the base up (you can do the same with salads). And here’s the good thing – it’s a flat fee of £7.47 for the standard pizza whether you go bland with Maragrita or want to pile on everything from pepperoni, to pineapple, to anchovies (I suspect given this scenario you might have to rein children’s ‘creativity’ in a bit). There’s also some suggested combos should you be really indecisive.

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They don’t let you get your hands on the toppings yourself or I can imagine some kind of food fight, rather you progress down a deli style counter with staff adding what you request. I noted they’re good about making sure they have different gloves to handle vegetarian and meat ingredients. There are also gluten-free bases on request. When your pizza’s cooked they holler your name and you collect it from another counter.

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I’d had a blow out meal the night before I dropped in to MOD for the charity open day (all profits went to Rockinghorse) so went a bit virtuous with the smallest base (the ‘mini’, £4.47, good for children) and only a little cheese, then immedietely had pizza envy as I watched the couple sitting next to me pull apart strings of melted mozzarella.

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As for the taste, well the toppings aren’t exactly Italy’s finest, and the olives are only slices, but they’re palatable enough and I  liked the roasted garlic option. The base on the other hand was surprisingly authentic and was cooked in a proper woodfired oven.

So if you’re at the marina, having a stroll or going bowling with kids with you then give MOD a whirl – I can even see it turning into a bit of a family competition on who can build the best pizza.

If you’re in Brighton city centre on the other hand and need a pizza fix I suggest Fatto A Mano on London Road which has authentic Naples-style pizzas and lets kids eat free (see my review here) or newcomer Franco Manco on the Church Street/Regent Street Corner (another chain, though mostly London-based) which has sourdough bases I once crossed London to try.

MOD pizza, 1 The Boardwalk, Brighton Marina, BN2 5ZB, Modpizza.com

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