Fredonia pizzeria makes two for budding restaurateurs

David and Judy Morales bought second restaurant in Fredonia at the start of the new year in hopes of leaving their full-time jobs

DAVID AND JUDY MORALES, pictured at their Cedar Grove location, recently took ownership of Bada Bing pizzeria in Fredonia on Jan. 2. The couple, who work full-time jobs outside of the restaurants, said entering pizza business has been a leap of faith. Photo by Sam Arendt
By 
JOE POIRIER
Ozaukee Press Staff

Bada Bing pizzeria in Fredonia is under new ownership. 

David and Judy Morales took over the restaurant at 221 Highland Dr. on Thursday, Jan. 2.

The couple bought the restaurant from Vicki Koepke, who previously sold them the Cedar Grove location, called Bada Bingz, in November 2018. 

“When I bought the Cedar Grove one, I told her to let me know if she wanted to sell the Fredonia one in three to five years. I guess she got the itch a little quicker than we thought,” David said, noting the restaurant names are slightly different to distinguish the two locations.     

“We want to keep the names different to avoid an identity crisis,” he said, laughing.

The Moraleses, who never owned a restaurant prior to purchasing the one in Cedar Grove, said it was a blessing to walk into an already-established business. 

“You could sense I was nervous, but our Cedar Grove location prepared us because we were coming in not knowing anything about running a business nor anything about baking a pizza,” David said.

David said it was a tough sales pitch when he approached his wife about opening the first restaurant.

“Judy was 100% against it,” he said. “I think we’ve been through enough that we knew we could handle a business.”

The couple said it was a leap of faith to go into the restaurant industry because they want to eventually retire from their full-time jobs. Judy works in quality control at Charter Steel in Saukville and David is a computer-numerical-control supervisor at Lakeshore Display Co. in Sheboygan. Judy worked as a cook years ago at Hobo’s Korner Kitchen in Belgium, but David never had any restaurant experience.

“I knew I really wanted to own something. Knowing that I currently put in 50 hours a week at my current job and I know I don’t want to do that when I’m 60,” David said. “It’s nice to have something to fall back on because you never know.”

They said it can be a little daunting running two restaurants while working full-time, but they’re up to the challenge.

“Our day starts at five o’clock in the morning. We get done with work at 4:30 p.m., run home and start making pizzas. Our schedule is full,” Judy said.

The Moraleses said they want to update the facade of the Fredonia restaurant with a banner and replace the lighting.  

“It’s pretty dark when you walk up to the building so we’ve got to do something,” Judy said.

The Fredonia location has four employees and they want to hire more staff to keep up with the demand. The Cedar Grove location has 12 employees, who are mostly Cedar Grove-Belgium High School students. 

“I’ve got wrestlers, band members, volleyball and football players and some Boy Scouts because I’m an assistant Boy Scout leader,” David said, noting his three children who are also students help out. “We have a strong pool of talent that really helps us keep this business going when we’re not here.” 

Because there are only a handful of restaurants in Fredonia and Cedar Grove, the couple said their pizzerias are popular destinations for locals. David also said many of their orders are for delivery.

“We have online ordering but we’re afraid to activate it,” he said. “It could help us on our slow nights, but really hurt us on the weekends because we want to keep up with the wait times.”

In addition to pizza, the restaurants serve chicken wings, sandwiches and Cedar Crest ice cream. 

The couple said they hope their new restaurant in Fredonia can help support community events, which they already do in Cedar Grove. Last week, they made 15 pizzas for a wresting tournament at Cedar Grove-Belgium High School.

“We want to be a staple for community events in Fredonia and we already do a lot in Cedar Grove like the Christmas Village Market,” Judy said.

Depending on how things go at the two locations, David said he would consider opening another restaurant. 

“I have dreams. If there’s some money to be made here then maybe we can take it to another level. Who knows?” he said. “The one thing I don’t want to do is get so big that we’re not making brick-oven pizzas. I think that will separate us from the big boys.”

 

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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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