Everything seemed to go wrong last month when Andy Huynh and Justin Tanada set out from Hamilton, Ontario, to Las Vegas for the International Pizza Challenge. But one thing turned out splendidly well: They ended up winning the World’s Best Cheese Slice competition at the event, and business at Cowabunga Pizzeria has exploded since then.

As the pizza-making partners explained in a March 25 post on Instagram, they almost missed their flight to Vegas, and a cooler packed with their signature dough got stuck at the airport in Toronto.

“We had to improvise last minute in Vegas with the backup dough we flew with us on our carry-on and [with] favors from our suppliers and friends who were on-site at [the competition],” the post read. “We were almost late to the actual competition and were so close to getting disqualified.”

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But not only were Huynh and Tanada allowed to compete, they advanced to the finals. Unfortunately, they had already used up all of their dough, which has to ferment for 72 hours. A Cowabunga team member had to jump on a plane the next day and bring more of the dough, which is made from a sourdough starter, plus cheese and sauce, to keep the pizza makers in the running.

In the end, Huynh and Tanada took first place, garnering positive media coverage back home for their victory.

Winning the competition “was a very exciting moment,” Huynh later told The Spectator. “When they announced it, we freaked out, and I don’t think they expected us to be freaking out that hard.”

Tanada told another Toronto media outlet that no pizzeria has ever won top honors at the International Pizza Challenge. And the Cowabunga Pizzeria owners soon learned first-hand just how good for business such a pizza-competition win can be.

Cowabunga is now getting more business than it has ever seen, he said last week. “For the past two weeks since we’ve been back, we’ve been selling out every single day. We have prepared triple the amount that we’re used to.”

In fact, the partners worry that they’re “hitting a ceiling” in terms of their daily pizza output as they try to keep up with the boost in demand. “It’s catapulting us into way more than we could have ever imagined,” Huynh told CBC’s Metro Morning. “I’ve always wanted to win an award like this.”