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Ben Nasberg

By MYRON LOVE Ben Nasberg is a leader in revolutionizing the pizza business and Winnipeg.


“I have always had a passion for the restaurant business,” says the president and EO of Carbone Coal Fired Pizza.
The son of Simmie and Larry Nasberg – who also has a B.Sc. – got his first taste of food preparation and service working at BB Camp in the kitchen. His resumé also includes stints at the Portsmouth Retirement Home, Joey Restaurant on Kenaston (which he helped open), and tending bar at the former HiFi Club – now known as the OV Club - which he now owns.


Eight years ago, Nasberg and a couple of friends were contemplating opening a new pizza restaurant in our city. “I felt that the restaurant business fit my lifestyle and that the time was right for me to take the plunge,” he says.
Now, as most people know, pizza is a very competitive business. Nasberg and his partners realized that they had to come up with a concept that would help their pizza restaurant stand out. The answer was Canada’s first coal-fired oven – and Carbone Coal Fired Pizza was born.


“We focus on quality in our ingredients, service and ambience,” Nasberg says. “We make everything from scratch. We use many local ingredients except for the tomatoes for our sauce which we import from Italy.”
Nasberg and his original partners opened their first Carbone Coal Fired Pizza Restaurant at 1580 Taylor in River Heights in 2011 and a second location at 260 St. Mary Ave. downtown (across from the new Public Safety Building) shortly thereafter. In 2016, Nasberg and company opened two more locations – at 686 St. Anne’s Road in St. Vital and Westwood Village Shopping centre, at Westwood and Portage.


Nasberg points out that Carbone Coal Fired Pizza offers a menu that extends beyond just pizza. “We have a full service menu which we are constantly updating,” he notes. “We are using our coal fired oven to experiment with other menu items.”
Readers may want to try the new white truffle pizza or the cheesecake parfait. Then there is the new Ferraro dessert pizza – banana puree spread over the dough, sprinkled with icing sugar and topped of with nutella.


Nasberg’s newest venture in the pizza world is once again pushing the boundaries. Last year, he and his partners began working on a new concept in pizza restaurants based on the Subway model. “Fast Fired by Carbone” emphasizes pizza – and salad - that is “fresh, authentic, sustainable and tailored (FAST)” for the individual customer.
“Fast Fired by Carbone reflects a shift in customer demand,” Nasberg says. “People on the go – students, travelers, young professionals – want quick service. Our new concept provides that along with top quality food and service at a reasonable cost.
The first Fast Fired by Carbone opened in Brandon in March. Nasberg reports that four locations in Winnipeg – in the downtown, on Regent, in the Sage Creek area and on Roblin – will be opening in the near future with eight more locations planned for Winnipeg.
“We have signed a lease in Yorkton (Saskatchewan) and have had expressions of interest from British Columbia and Ontario,” he reports


Fast Fired by Carbone is also a different concept in that the quick service outlets will all be franchised, whereas Carbone Coal Fired Pizza locations are corporately owned.
“We developed a franchise model for our new venture,” Nasberg says. “The operating costs are lower. We think that we can take it across Canada.”
Also new for Nasberg and company is a connection with the Winnipeg Goldeyes Baseball club, which went into effect at the beginning of August. “We have developed a program – my5050 – which allows you to connect to the Goldeyes website on your phone to buy 50/50 tickets,” he says.


Nasberg has also opened a restaurant and sports bar at 2609 Portage Avenue (near Moray) that combines good food and games. “We have 50 TVs in the place,” he says. “It’s like an adult playground.”
Nasberg’s next big event is his upcoming wedding to his fiancée, Leanne, in October. The wedding will be at the Fairmont. Nasberg adds that he knows of a good pizza restaurant or two where the bridal party can go for a late night snack.

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