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Both STL Area Pie Five Pizza Cos. Now Closed

Both STL Area Pie Five Pizza Cos. Now Closed

Richmond Heights Pie Five Pizza Closed Last Week

Richmond Heights, MO/April 13, 2017 (STLRestaurant.News) – St. Louis is a tough pizza town. Diners here are demanding of both quality food and quality service.  That’s because we love pizza. Denizens of the Gateway City love it so much that we invented our own kind—St. Louis style. But St. Louis diners love pizza in all it’s forms, from our own thin crust, to hand tossed, foldable New York style, stuffed crust, and even Chicago deep dish.  There are hundreds of pizza places to choose from.  Still, we’re a hungry bunch, always looking for something new.  So when the first Pie Five Pizza opened in May 2015 in Chesterfield (17215 Chesterfield Airport Road), there was much fanfare.

The sleek, fast-casual restaurant offering design-your-own pizza baked in 5 minutes had been well received.  TF Pie Group, led by Jamey and Jill Tasker, is a group of about eight local investor behind the pizzeria.  TF Pie Group had signed a franchise agreement that called for 15 locations of Pie Five Pizza Cos. in the St. Louis area.  And a second location opened at the Menards development in Richmond Heights (1778 Hanley Road) the following June (2016). But the franchises didn’t last long.

The Pie Five Pizza Co. in Richmond Heights has closed.  A hand-lettered sign on the door was the only announcement made.  It reads simply, “We are closed.”  40 South News quotes an employee at the nearby Penn Station sub shop as saying the pizzeria closed last week.  The Chesterfield store had already quietly closed up.  Both locations are listed as closed by both Google Maps and by members on Yelp.

It’s unclear if the local closings are related to the Texas-based chain’s troubles with investors in Chicago, Minnesota, and Indiana.  According to Nation’s Restaurant News Pie Five’s parent company, Rave Restaurant Group, is being sued by a franchisee alleging the company provided misleading information about its profitability and sales, and nine restaurants in Chicago and Minnesota have also closed as same-store sales for the Pie Five chain fell 17.4 percent in the last quarter of 2016 (which ended Dec. 25).

A new CEO at Rave, former Smashburger CEO Scott Crane was brought onboard in January to try to turn things around for the struggling pizza chain.  Amid the turmoil, Rave is poised to open their 100th Pie Five Pizza Co. location next month, and they continue to expand across the country.  There are Pie Five locations in 21 states from Delaware to Texas, including four in Missouri (Kansas City, Independence, Branson, and St. Joseph, with a Springfield store in the works).  The franchise has plans to expand to four additional states (New Jersey, Louisiana, New Mexico, and Arizona) in the coming year.

Skip the Fast Food & Opt for Great Food Fast – TwinOak Wood-Fired Pizza & BBQ

TwinOak Wood-Fired Pizza

TwinOak Wood-Fired Pizza & BBQ

Brentwood, MO/December 18, 2016 (STLRestaurant.News) – The last full weekend of the Christmas shopping season is upon us.  For some that means two days of making mad dashes from one shopping center to the next.  All that running around makes you hungry!  Food courts or drive-thrus might seem convenient, but a quick respite between mega-plazas is a more sensible option.  Why eat poorly when you don’t need to go out of your way for a great meal?  TwinOak Wood-Fired Pizza & BBQ at 1201 Strassner Drive in Brentwood is making real, fresh food and they’re a convenient stop between shopping destinations.  They’re right around the corner from the Promenade, and just a few blocks from Brentwood Square and St. Louis Galleria.  There’s even a Sam’s Club and Walmart Supercenter right across the street on Hanley Road.

Freddie Friedrichs opened the restaurant with his sons, twins Casey and Curt Friedrichs in 2011.  Curt has moved on to Nashville with his wife, former KSDK-TV meteorologist Bree Smith—now Chief Meteorologist at CBS affiliate, WTVF.   But Freddie and son Casey are still running the family-friendly TwinOak Wood-Fired Pizza & BBQ restaurant.

Just as the name implies, they specialize in wood-fired pizza and slow-smoked barbecue.  The restaurant lays claim to the largest wood-fired oven in the US, and they fire it up to 900-degrees to bake their Neapolitan style pizza to crispy perfection in just a few minutes.  They use only Missouri grown oak to fire it.  The consistent quality of the wood they use ensures everything they bake in the oven meets their high quality standards.  Local sourcing lets them make great food in a sustainable way.  Casey Friedrich says the wood-fired oven is not only fast, but it’s a healthy way to bake delicious food.

TwinOak’s Chefs Andrew Beuschel and Aaron Hults have created several signature pizzas, including the Bleu Ribbon Pizza: a glorious combination of filet mignon, arugula, bleu cheese, shaved parmesan, and mozzarella, drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  The meatier-ologist is made with three kinds of sausage: chorizo, Italian, and Andouille; plus bacon, basil, mozzarella, and their house-made tomato sauce.  But they didn’t stop there.  They do pizzas with pulled pork and pulled chicken.  They have Cajun, tropical, classic Italian, and Jamaican jerk too.  They also do vegetarian pizzas, including a Mediterranean complete with artichoke hearts and kalamata olives.  They’ll even let you pick whatever toppings you like so you can build your own.

The BBQ side of the menu offers some crowd pleasers that are slow-smoked over Missouri hickory.  There’s pulled chicken and pork, of course, but you’ll also find beef brisket, smoked wings, and fall-off-the-bone-tender baby back ribs.  Order three bones for lunch or happy hour; get a half rack for dinner, complete with classic sides like homemade coleslaw or twice-baked potatoes.

At TwinOak, there’s a little something for everyone.  As if great pizza and barbecue weren’t enough, they also offer perfectly cooked steaks, great starters (like bacon-wrapped shrimp poppers, and home-smoked salmon), salads, wraps, and desserts.  They also have a terrific selection of local craft brews on tap.

With a gigantic oven like the one at TwinOak, you know someone is baking cookies!  They do chocolate chip by the cookie or the baker’s dozen (13).  If you’re feeling indulgent, try their signature deep dish cookies.  These are thick skillet-baked cookies (chocolate chip or snickerdoodle) fresh from the oven and topped with ice cream.

TwinOak Wood-Fired Pizza & BBQ opens at 11:00 a.m. both Saturday and Sunday, so they’re a perfect choice for lunch or a quick pick-me-up between shopping centers.  Once the errands are done, you can count on them for a feel-good family dinner.  They’re open until 10:00 p.m. Friday & Saturday, and until 9:00 p.m. Sunday – Thursday.  They have Happy Hour seven days a week from 3:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.  Reservations can be made online, although they generally aren’t necessary for lunch or weeknight dinners.  For large parties, they ask you give them a call at (314) 644-2772.  That’s also the number to call to arrange catering.

The atmosphere at TwinOak is casual and family-friendly.  The hospitable staff offers service that is quick and efficient—just what you want in the middle of your bustling day!  Why settle for a blah fast food lunch or dinner when you can take the break you need without derailing your shopping plans?  TwinOak Wood-Fired Pizza & BBQ lets you make the most of the last full weekend of the Christmas shopping season and warm up with a good meal.

Contact Information:

TwinOak Wood-Fired Pizza & BBQ
Owners: Casey Friedrichs and Freddie Friedrichs
1201 Strassner Drive (at Hanley)
Brentwood, MO 63144
(314) 644-2772


Picture courtesy of Landmark Sign Company


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Sommers launching new pizza concept in St. Louis

new pizza concept

Chris Sommers, Co-Owner of Pi Pizzeria launching new pizza concept

St. Louis, MO: (STLRestaurant.News) Chris Sommers, the Co-Owner of Pi Pizzeria, this week announced he is launching a new pizza concept for all St. Louis residents.  The pizza mogul announced he will roll out a ‘ZZA at 282 N. Skinker Blvd., near Washington University’s campus in sometime early 2017.  The information was gathered from a liquor license application submitted to the city of St. Louis earlier this month.

Sommers told the St. Louis Magazine that the restaurant is inspired by one of his favorite spots to enjoy pizza in San Francisco, and that the entity will be opening in an as soon as 3 months.  The menu, like other Sommers’ restaurants, will include about eight varieties of pizza, as well as eight varieties of salad.  The signature item, less shockingly, will be a pi’zzata, which is a pizza with a center cut out and a salad stacked in the middle.

The ‘ZZA’s pizzas will cook in approximately two minutes, in line with fast-casual wait times, he told the publication.  The ‘ZZA will be a 30-seat, 1,600-square-foot space, and will be designed by SPACE Architects + Designs.  The architect company also designed Pi Pizzeria’s downtown St. Louis and Cincinnati locations.

Sommers told the magazine the location was carefully selected to complement the Washington University campus.  Most of the customers will likely be foot traffic from the university at all hours of the day.  The property, owned by Washington University, has an appraised value of $117,800, according to city of St. Louis real estate records.  The university is excited of the prospect of another pizza joint that can accommodate its hungry students.

Additionally, a second location for another ‘ZZA is close to be finalized currently.  Sommers has been a busy man, and hopes to continue serving the residents of St. Louis with the quality pizza they deserve.

Contributing Editor: Alexandra R. Fasulo


Melo's Pizzeria

Garage-Born Neapolitan Pizza – Melo’s Pizzeria

ST. LOUIS, MO: (STLRestaurant.News) – Melo’s Pizzeria – We’ve all heard the stories of great music and technology born in someone’s garage.  But how about great pizza?  The Neapolitan pies they’re baking in a Benton Park garage may be the best in St. Louis.  Still in their first year of business, Melo’s Pizzeria, 2438 McNair Ave. (behind Blues City Deli), is garnering rave reviews from customers.

In a city famous for its thin, crispy crusted pizza with translucent Provel cheese, Neapolitan style might seem like an odd favorite.  Yet when you consider the importance of fresh sauce and fresh toppings for a quality St. Louis style pizza, you’ll see Neapolitan really is a perfect fit.  What is Neapolitan pizza after all, but simple, fresh ingredients: basic dough, raw tomatoes, fresh cheese, basil and olive oil, baked in a screaming hot oven to create a crispy, melty pie?  It bridges the gap between classic St. Louis style pizza and the chewy-crusted East Coast style so many non-natives adore.  And Melo’s does Neapolitan oh so well.

Melo’s is the brainchild of Blues City owner Vince Valenza and his son Joey Valenza.  For years, Benton Park’s favorite deli and sandwich shop has been Blues City 2438 McNair Ave., St. Louis.  After buying the building and lot from his landlord in 2013, Vince Valenza began considering his options for developing the brick garage behind his deli.  His son, Joey Valenza loved to bake, and the two considered using the garage to bake bread for the deli.  They quickly realized it would be near impossible to keep up with the volume of bread and rolls needed.

Meanwhile, Joey had begun making pizza using a kettle bbq grill that he’d rigged to mimic a wood-fired pizza oven.  That inspired father and son to convert Blue’s City’s garage into a pizzeria.  The small brick building was fully restored.  They brought in a beautiful wood-fired oven from Naples.  And last December (2015) Melo’s Pizzeria was born.

The restaurant is cozy, to say the least.  The blue-tiled oven bears the name “St. Louis The King.”  It’s a bold statement in a space too small to park a bus in.  The stools lining the front windows and outdoor tables provide the only seating.  But cooler weather shouldn’t keep you from trying this amazing pizza.  It’s available to go too. But check the website, or call before stopping in as their hours are subject to change.

Melo’s menu is small, but enticing, offering several takes on classic Neapolitan style pizza.  Everything is made with simple, high-quality ingredients, flash baked in the big blue oven.  It’s not all dough, tomato, mozzarella and basil, although that combination is available in the Pizza Margherita.  They make it special by adding extra virgin olive oil and grana (a hard, slow-ripened, semi-fat cheese with a buttery tang, reminiscent of Parmigiano Reggiano).  The Victor Street Veggie is a garlicky pizza that includes onion, mushroom and cherry tomatoes.  The Veets is their take on the classic pepperoni and sausage combo.  All of Melo’s pizzas are topped with grana, fresh and whole milk mozzarella, Romano and fontina cheeses in various combinations and subjected to the magic of the big blue, wood-fired oven.

You need only look behind Benton Park’s favorite Blues City Deli, to find the little garage of heaven that is Melo’s Pizzeria.  The customer reviews are still coming in, but right now Melo’s is pushing five-stars.  Could Neapolitan style pizza become the new St. Louis favorite?  It wouldn’t be the first innovative idea born in a garage, maybe just the first really good pizza.

Contact info:

Melo’s Pizzeria
Owners: Joey & Vince Valenza
2438 McNair Ave.
Benton Park Neighborhood
St. Louis, MO 63104
(314) 833-4489



STL.Pizza is online and soliciting vendors

ST. LOUIS, MO: (STLRestaurant.Pizza) STL.Pizza was recently sold and has now been developed as an online ordering system, representing pizzeria’s and restaurants that serve pizza or flat-bread across the St. Louis metro area.  It doesn’t cost anything for restaurants to participate in the program unless something is sold.

It was designed with the consumer in mind, making it easy to shop for pizza, pizza delivery, pizza deals, pizza coupons or other Italian cuisines across the St. Louis metro area.  An easy to remember website, STL.PIZZA.  It doesn’t get any easier than that.  However, the main purpose in purchasing this premium domain is that it will rank well in organic search results if the website is properly designed.

The domain name was purchased and resold by a local web design firm, St. Louis Media, LLC.  The domain was sold for an undisclosed amount of money to a local private buyer that has since launched the online ordering website.  The concept is simple, they market your pizza for a percentage of revenue they are responsible for generating.  If they don’t sell any pizza/food, you don’t owe them any fees.

The new owners are committed to aggressively marketing the website for maximum online visibility and traffic.  They plan on marketing the website using email, online advertising such as Google AdWords and Facebook ads, press releases and much more.  “The owner will do everything necessary to properly market the website”, says Myers with St. Louis Media, LLC.

Participating restaurants will pay 10% of sales received from STL.Pizza to become a participating restaurant.  There are possibly some small setup fees and an optional wireless printer that is used to accept orders.  Orders can also be received via fax, email, text or any device that has Internet access with access to a website dashboard that display orders.  Customers can also pay online.

The structure is designed with small pizzeria’s, or restaurants that offer pizza/flat-bread, in mind by pooling a groups marketing efforts together to maximize the impact of their marketing in order to compete with the major national chains.  Locals are welcome to join.

Contact information:


Phone: (314) 808-1870

Email: info@STLMedia.Agency


The Mythology of Pieology

ST. LOUIS, MO: (STLRestaurant.News) With all the competition in the world of pizza, the more unique you can get, the more you stand out. Pieology, a fast-casual pizza restaurant, has found a way to reinvent the conventional way most people think about creating and serving pizza. It’s all about building a delicious pizza that signifies your own unique personality. Founder, Carl Chang, along with his wife and daughters, set out to make the pizza possibilities limitless.

Chang, brother of local tennis star Michael Chang, believes that pizza used to be a celebration that you could look forward to with your friends and family. But somewhere along the line, it became the convenience food you could order with a coupon when you didn’t want to cook. With Pieology, he intends to bring back that celebration of pizza by putting the customers in charge of their own destination, or in this case, their own creation. At each of the stores, there is a quote board featuring inspirational quotes.

When you stop in, you can expect a large number of fresh quality toppings, house-made crusts and signature sauces, all of which can be used for any flavor combination you can design. There are 40 different toppings, and everything from wheat crust to gluten-free crust, both made in-house, to totally vegetarian pizzas. Pieology seeks to appeal to its customers by giving them endless options. They recently tested out customizable salads.

The lines go fast while you’re interacting with one of the Piologists bringing your pie to life. They boast that their open-flame oven bakes your smoking hot creation in as little as 3 minutes, meaning a delivery to your table within 5-10 minutes! And, the cherry on top the cake is that your custom pizza is very affordable, at $8 or less.

A few of their specialties include the Mad to Meat You Pizza with Meatballs, House Red Sauce, Mozzarella, & Olive Oil, a Smokin’ Buffalo Chicken made with Fiery Buffalo Sauce, Spicy All-Natural Chicken, Fresh Cilantro, Gorgonzola & Mozzarella Cheeses & Olive Oil, or for something a bit different, the Alfredo’s Alfredo Pizza, made with Olive Oil, 3-Cheese Alfredo Sauce, Parmesan, Mozzarella, Garlic, Mushrooms, Artichokes, Fresh Basil, Grape Tomatoes, and Black Pepper.

The California-based chain, founded in 2011, now has three St. Louis-area locations, one in St. Charles, one in South County, and the newest in Creve Coeur. They hope to open several more Pieology locations in the market over the next few years.

Video courtesy of Pieology


Imos Pizza

New Back to School Coupons at Imos Pizza – Chesterfield

CHESTERFIELD, MO: (STLRestaurant.News) Imos Pizza – Chesterfield, located at 1717 Clarkson Rd, Chesterfield, MO, has announced the release of new Back to School Saving coupons that are good through September 29, 2016.  This particular Imo’s Pizza franchise has been in business for more than 35 years serving St. Louis Style pizza and popular Italian cuisines that Imo’s Pizza are known for all across the city and other areas in Missouri.

Imo’s Pizza is not new to the local restaurant scene.  They started on The Hill in 1964 with the unique idea of delivering pizza.  Today they are recognized as the 32nd largest pizza franchise in the country.  They are known for popularizing the St. Louis Style Pizza.   It is estimated that there are more than 90 Imo’s Pizza restaurants in the greater St. Louis metro area with a few spread across the mid-west.  You don’t have to go very far to find a neighborhood Imo’s Pizza.

Contact information:

Imo’s Pizza – Chesterfield

1717 Clarkson Rd

Chesterfield, MO

Phone: (636) 537-0011

Where Size Does Matter – World Full of Pizza Comes to Creve Coeur

Pizza World

Pizza World Comes to Creve Coeur

ST. LOUIS, MO: (STLRestaurant.News) – It may be a big world full of pizza’s, but none bigger than the very own, Pizza World. They’re the first business venture to combine the exciting new concept of world class gourmet pizzas with the speed, efficiency and convenience of traditional pizza delivery restaurants. Pizza World, which is a division of St. Louis-based Pizza World USA Franchise Corp., currently has six locations in Missouri and three in Illinois.

Besides their unique “Big World Pizza”, which is 452 square inches… two whole feet of heavenly pizza goodness, they offer a menu fell of other Specialty Gourmet Pizza’s. A couple favorites are the Amore Roma, an Old World Masterpiece with pepperoni, Italian sausage, mushrooms & black olives, the Via Bianco, made with olive oil glaze topped with provolone, mozzarella, Swiss, fresh basil & oregano, and the Aloha Makana, with its unique mixture of Canadian bacon, fresh pineapple & mandarin oranges.

The new Creve Coeur location at 12305 Olive Blvd., will be 660-square feet, seat 30 diners, and will feature dine-in, carry-out and delivery options. They plan to sell upscale gourmet pizzas, sandwiches and also have a salad shop. No word yet on when they are planning to open.

Contact information:

Pizza World

1535 Johnson Road

Granite City, IL 62040

Phone: (618) 451-1444

Email: info@pizzaworldoline.com

Contributing Editor: Kara Savio

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Imo's Pizza


CHESTERFIELD, MO: (STLRestaurant.News) – Imos Pizza Chesterfield, located at the Clarkson Square Center, 1717 Clarkson Rd, Chesterfield, MO is celebrating their 30th year of business.  It is and has been owned and operated by Mike Riggio for that 30 year period.

In addition to serving the most popular St. Louis style pizza, they offer appetizers, salads, pasta, Italian sandwiches, dessert and even a breakfast pizza call the Egg-ceptional.  They offer dine-in, carry-out, online ordering, delivery and catering to the Chesterfield, Chesterfield Valley and Clarkson Valley areas and accept all major credit cards.  They frequently offer specials and coupons.

Imo’s Franchising, Inc. is popular in the St. Louis, MO area, but has locations throughout the mid-west.  Currently, there are more than 90 locations in Missouri, Illinois and Kansas and is noted on Wikipedia to be the 32nd largest pizza chain in the nation.  Imo’s Pizza is significantly responsible for popularizing the St. Louis style pizza.  Their slogan is “The Square Beyond Compare.”

For more information contact: Mike Riggio at Imo’s Pizza, 1717 Clarkson Rd, Chesterfield, Missouri or call (636) 537-0011.