Disco Volante

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Photos by Lukas Schaller

The recently opened Pizzeria is the second of its kind hosted by Maria Fuchs, a vanguard in the recent “genuine pizza” hype in Vienna. The name “Disco Volante” brings back memories of the James Bond villain Emilio Largo’s escape vessel. Also a famous car designed in the early 50ies carried this name (there has recently been a relaunch by Alfa Romeo). But in fact does the name of the pizzeria simply refer to its original meaning “flying disc”.

According to the clients wish the restaurant should not only carry the atmosphere of a southern Italian pizzeria but also transport the lightness of the “Italo-Disco” era of the 1970s and 80s.

The heart of every pizzeria is the wood fired oven which in this case is a giant disco ball with a rotating mechanism. After the dough is run out the Pizzaioli start the engine and the oven begins to slowly turn with about 1 revolution per minute.

In charge of the design as well for most of the production of the oven was Vienna based madamemohr, a young architects and designers collaborative. Their goal is not to just design but also to fabricate where possible. In this case, the outer shell of the oven which is made from heat resistant concrete, was produced utilizing CNC-milling technology to build the spherical formwork.

The mechanism allowing the oven to rotate is hidden underneath the baking surface where the heat does not damage sensitive parts. The shell is covered with approximately 7500 special cut mirror tiles which were glued on site.

The ceiling of the former grocery store revealed an extra meter of height when removed. This additional space contributes to the canteen like feeling known from the overcrowded places in Naples drowned in neon light. Adding up to this harsh and rather uncomfortable environment are the former church benches as well as the chairs, typically found in Vienna’s city departments and the tables only leaving space for a pizza and a beverage each. These attributes might sound unusual for a restaurant but are key elements of the success of “Disco Volante”.

The waiters and waitresses are all wearing special designed overalls by fashion designer Milena Heussler & Luciano Raimondi and recall a mechanics outfit.

Responsible for the design of the Neon Sign as well as all print media are grafisches Büro, Vienna.

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