Even though O4W Pizza closed its namesake Old Fourth Ward location more than a year ago, the sting from the pizzeria’s schlep to the suburbs never truly went away for ITP-ers. The Duluth location, which opened last September, is bigger and in many ways better than the original—owner Anthony Spina perfected his pizza-making and added pastas, appetizers, and salads to the menu. But the convenience of having the Grandma Pie in your backyard is hard to beat.
Pine no longer—Spina is bringing his pizza back to Old Fourth Ward in mid-2018.
Spina has partnered with Billy Streck, of Hampton + Hudson and Cypress Street Pint + Plate, to open a yet-to-be-named restaurant and bar in Studioplex’s new phase at 659 Auburn Avenue Northeast. Streck is a New York native with more than 20 years of experience in the industry (not to mention, he grew up in his family’s pizzeria). The new restaurant will not be a pizzeria alone, but more of a hybrid according to Streck. “The exciting thing about Anthony and I, we’re doing a collaboration project. So we wanted to combine our expertise into one spot.”
“It’ll be similar to what I’m doing out in Duluth, but a little different,” Spina says. “We’re playing around with some Italian dishes and making it more like gastro pub. I’ve got like ten pages of [possible dishes] right now and I’m going back and forth trying to figure out what I want to choose.”
Spina’s pizza is still a big part of the menu. The new restaurant, which will be open for lunch and dinner, will serve the top-selling rectangular pies (such as the Grandma and the Detroit) from O4W Pizza, along with many other Italian sandwiches, pastas, and salads. The restaurant will also have vegan and gluten-free options (including a gluten-free Grandma Pie) in addition to a full beverage and bar program. Everything from the mozzarella to the bread will be made from scratch. And many of the menu items will be portable so that diners can take them to-go for a picnic on the nearby BeltLine.
Atlanta design studio Smith Hanes is on board to build out the restaurant and bar, which will face the Eastside Trail. Streck and Spina say they want the place to feel open, inviting, and communal. Early designs include banquette seating and an open kitchen where you can watch Spina at work.
Spina has racked up accolade after accolade for his pizza since he first debuted on Irwin Street in January 2015 (our Best New Restaurants and Best of Atlanta designations are just a few among them), and Strek has shown he knows how to build neighborhood restaurants where people want to hang out. (The fire pit at Cypress Street remains one of the best places to spend fall evening.) This new spot is sure to be one of the most anticipated openings of 2018.