PAIRING WITH PIZZA: Pizzeria returns to city, moves in with brewery

0
556

GREENFIELD — It’s not difficult to grasp the magic of the combination, according to Danny Webb.

“Pizza and beer, we don’t have to over-complicate it,” said the partner of a new pizzeria downtown.

Hot pies have teamed up with cold brews now that Greek’s Pizzeria has moved in with Wooden Bear Brewing Co.

And while the pizza purveyor is new to the brewery, it isn’t new to downtown Greenfield, having had about a 10-year run in the neighborhood over three decades ago.

Webb, who has a background in breweries in Indiana and California, had been intrigued by the notion of a taproom lacking a food experience, particularly of a pizza persuasion. He just needed to find one.

Wooden Bear Brewing Co., located at 21 W. North St., hadn’t always lacked dining.

“The food journey at Wooden Bear has kind of been all over the place,” said Brent Sandquist, co-owner of the brewery.

The establishment originally had a chef who made dishes like sandwiches, paninis and salads. The business also worked with a caterer for a while.

“We just kind of realized that we didn’t want to mess with food, we wanted to do the beer and that was about it,” Sandquist said.

As COVID-19 tightened its grip on the world, Wooden Bear was looking for ways to draw more customers during a pandemic that’s been hard on business.

Sharing Webb’s sentiments on the perfect pair pizza and beer make, Sandquist started a conversation with another Greek’s Pizzeria representative.

“We spun it up pretty quick,” Sandquist said. “We basically came to an agreement that they handle the food and we handle the beer.”

Wooden Bear already had a kitchen; Greek’s Pizzeria just made it “pizza friendly” by equipping it with the proper ovens, Webb said.

Customers wishing to dine in at the Wooden Bear can scan a QR code on their smartphones to access the Greek’s Pizzeria menu and order before having their food brought out to them. For those who prefer the old-fashioned way, Greek’s Pizzeria representatives will be on hand as well.

Orders for delivery and pickup can be made at greekspizzeria.com.

Sandquist added Wooden Bear is also working on a way to have beer available for delivery along with Greek’s Pizzeria delivery orders.

Greek’s Pizzeria first opened in Greenfield in 1977 at 25 N. State St., where it could sit about 50 customers and had a kitchen facing the street so onlookers could watch cooks flip the dough.

The restaurant later moved to 413 N. State St. before closing in the late 1980s. Dragon Place operates there today.

Chris Karamesines started the first Greek’s Pizzeria in 1969 in Valparaiso. The restaurant currently has 18 locations in central Indiana. All are independently owned and operated.