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Taking pizza delivery to the next level
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This Greek-style, fully insulated Pompeii oven made entirely of Mason brick was built by hand by Echá Pizza founder and owner Aleks Tsymbal (Photo contributed).

Aleks Tsymbal and his family have always had a passion for food and have been heavily involved in the restaurant industry in recent years, with his sister Yelena opening Loza Wine & Crepes in 2016. Just a year later, Tsysmbal began his own endeavors in the food universe when he started brainstorming ideas to bring the family’s popular pizza recipe to customers, but he wasn’t leaning towards the typical pizza delivery business model.

While at an auction in 2017, Tysmbal and his father purchased a 1955 Ford firetruck, a piece of historic machinery that he spent months repairing while adding some extra features. Those features? A Greek-style, fully insulated Pompeii oven made entirely of Mason bricks.

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Aleks Tsymbal and family have restored this 1955 Ford Firetruck to be used as the perfect hauler for their handmade, brick oven pizza (Photo contributed).

“Around the time my sister opened Loza, we had a friend who was telling me that they had a few trucks with grills and ovens attached to them running around in LA and I thought that would be killer out here,” Tysmbal explained. “I thought it was so unique, so I was like, ‘Well screw it, let's do it,’ and I built that thing from scratch.”

Tysmbal shared that he spent hours each day researching similar food trucks and trailers as well as watching YouTube videos on outdoor ovens.

“I probably watched hundreds of hours on YouTube of different styles and things and just said, ‘You know what, I'm going to burn the ships. I'm just going to go out there, buy the material and go all in.’ I just went through and built it here in my shop piecing it all together. I screwed up a couple of times, had to take a bunch of stuff apart and rebuild it, until I kind of got it right,” he said.

After much trial and error and finally attaching the oven to the classic truck, Tysmbal let his culinary expertise do the rest. In the years following, he has settled on a menu of six different pizza topping combinations: cheese, pepperoni, margarita, chicken bacon, Hawaiian and mushroom with zesty white sauce.

“After about a year and a half, I just started playing around with different recipes and different styles, different sauces, different bases and just kind of self-educated. I finally came to believe that less is more and to just keep it simple and stick to the basics,” Tysmbal said.

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Echá Pizza has a menu of six pizzas, but can also make one with custom toppings such as the this one with peperoni, jalapeno, tomato and black olives (Photo contributed).

Today, Tysmbal and his truck, which operate under the name Echá Pizza, is available for rent for those around the Turlock area for birthday parties and other celebrations.

And with the Echá Pizza catering business continuing to grow, so has the truck itself. Because of the truck’s history in the firefighting industry and being able to accommodate for hoses and pumps, Tysmbal has added taps for drinks on the side of the vehicle. According to Tysmbal, he does not serve alcoholic beverages through the taps unless the party he is serving brings their own kegs. But whether it’s water, tea, soda or beer, he says the unique feature has drawn rave reviews.

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Aside from hauling the Pompeii domed oven, the side of the 1955 Ford firetruck can serve drinks on tap, thanks to its history with fire hoses back in the day (Photo contributed).

“I mostly just provide the tap truck for the ambiance and for the experience. Guests could just come up and have their cup poured while they have fresh pizzas coming right out at the back. It’s really cool,” he said.

Looking back at the progress he has made with repairing the ’55 Ford truck, building the brick oven from scratch and watching his small business grow, Tysmbal has expressed pride in what he has accomplished, believing that his Ukrainian heritage has given him the confidence and determination to make his dream into a reality.

“We originally came from Ukraine. My parents came here with seven kids. My dad just kind of ran with the idea that you had to work for yourself and chase that American Dream, and I guess he instilled that in us,” Tysmbal said.

Tsymbal encourages those interested in more information or to rent Echá Pizza’s services to follow the business on Instagram at @EchaPizza or check out their website,

“Message me on Instagram, through the website, give me a call, whatever is best,” he said. “Check us out. We’d love to service your next party.”