The Rapidian Home

CVLT Pizza works to be example of farm-to-table dining

CVLT Pizza wants to show people what farm-to-table truly means, and they want to do it with great-tasting pizza.
The "Green Wagon Veggie" pizza

The "Green Wagon Veggie" pizza /CVLT PIZZA

CVLT Pizza Info


10 Jefferson Ave SE

Grand Rapids, MI, 49503

CVLT Pizza website

Facebook page

/Davis Dryer

CVLT Pizza founder Ryan Cappelletti is out to change the way you see food, and more specifically, pizza.

Cappelletti has experience in the locally sourced restaurant scene. Starting with Bartertown Diner, and now recently moving on to CVLT Pizza, Cappelletti has set off to show people how what they eat can have an impact on the community around them.

“The whole theme of what we’ve been doing since beginning Bartertown and now with CVLT Pizza is trying to really show people how much we can actually dump back into the local community, which I don’t think people really understand,” he says.

By making CVLT Pizza an entirely farm-to-table restaurant, Cappelletti has been able to create a place where people can see the impact that restaurants can have on the local community and economy around them. CVLT Pizza is located on the same block as Bartertown Diner, only two doors down. The presence of these two businesses helps create a busier appearance for the block, which will then help invite more people into that area, he says.

People are able to see what farm-to-table truly means through these two businesses. Both Bartertown and CVLT Pizza have set out to be all locally sourced. Cappelletti hopes that through this example, people can see that two local, non-chain restaurants can function and survive, all while supporting the farmers from their area.

“If we’re out of an ingredient, there’s only one person -the farmer- to talk to, not a food distribution service,” Cappelletti says. This means the menu is varied and changing continuously, and also goes back to the roots of pizza itself.

“Pizza is a peasant food that was designed to be bread, sauce and whatever you had,” Cappelletti says. CVLT Pizza follows that same idea.

“Whatever we have, we’re gonna put on dough, and give it to you," he says. "People [think we're] like a new modern twist on pizza... no, we’re the old way of making pizza. That’s what it is. It predates everything. It’s not modern at all. It’s a very old idea.”

By bypassing the use of food distributors and relying completely on local farmers, Cappelletti hopes to show people the amount of work that goes into their food. Something that is out of season will not be gracing a CVLT pizza anytime soon. If they were unable to meet up with a certain farmer, that certain ingredient or topping will have to wait.

Cappelletti wants to truly reach for what he feels farm-to-table is.

“Right now it is kind of trendy to buy local, but it’s not really a trend to me. It’s more of an economic solution,” he says. Because of that, he wants CVLT Pizza to be a place where people can come in and have their ideas of food be challenged.

One simple way CVLT Pizza has done this is the seemingly mundane detail of how to even enter their establishment. There is very little signage, and the entrance is located in the back of the building, rather than the front. Cappelletti says this is a way to ask people to truly commit to their decision to eat at CVLT Pizza that day.

“Hey, here’s a little challenge for you," Cappelletti says. "Give us a little bit of effort, and we’ll give you so much.”

Once people are inside the restaurant, they’ll be able to see their food being made.

“It’s about the food. Our kitchen is open so we can have conversations with people and we can talk about pizza if people have questions," says Cappelletti. "We want people here to get to know what pizza is.”

Cappelletti hopes that people will start to think about where their pizza (and, in general, their food) is coming from.

“Our main focus really is people knowing what is farm-to-table and what isn’t farm-to-table. Really knowing how the farmer feels and what they’re going through is the most important thing," he says. "We don’t not have peppers because we hate you, we don’t have peppers because we can’t get them."

"We’re not trying to spite you; we’re not trying to be different; we’re not trying to be radical; we’re not trying to be trendy," Cappelletti explains. "We’re trying to be honest.” 

The Rapidian, a program of the 501(c)3 nonprofit Community Media Center, relies on the community’s support to help cover the cost of training reporters and publishing content.

We need your help.

If each of our readers and content creators who values this community platform help support its creation and maintenance, The Rapidian can continue to educate and facilitate a conversation around issues for years to come.

Please support The Rapidian and make a contribution today.

Comments, like all content, are held to The Rapidian standards of civility and open identity as outlined in our Terms of Use and Values Statement. We reserve the right to remove any content that does not hold to these standards.


No better pizza in Grand Rapids than this. Best when accompanied by a Michigan craft beer. Or, y'know, a salad.