Crust Pizzeria, a new concept from the team behind Crust Simply Italian, is making its debut in Tempe, located at 1120 E. Baseline Rd.
The new concept is set to open in the Lake Country Village Shopping Center sometime next month, according to In Business Phoenix. The company, led by Michael Merendino, recently applied for a liquor license for the new location. Crust Pizzeria will be inspired by Crust Simply Italian’s traditional recipes and flavors, bringing a twist to pies, slices, pasta, wings, and salads. Merendino opened Crust Simply Italian in Scottsdale in 2007.
“What we are doing here is fun, edgy, and youthful. Like no other,” Merendino tells In Business Phoenix. “We believe in serving high-quality ingredients with the best prices and incredible presentation. Pizza, wings, and pasta, so beautiful you will just have to take a picture!”
Since opening its first location, the company has expanded to Gilbert and Chandler, with another site coming to Mesa soon. The new Mesa site will feature a speakeasy for the first time ever. All three restaurants offer authentic Italian ingredients transformed into east coast classics, inspired by working at his father’s pizzeria’ in Long Island. These recipes will serve as the foundation for the new Crust Pizzeria.
“Michael worked in the family business growing up at Francesca’s, his father’s pizzeria, located in Great Neck, Long Island,” according to Crust’s website. “Here is where Michael learned and adopted his father’s recipes. Francesca’s is where his father developed and created the Pizza Rustica from the ideas of the Pizzetta. The Rustica has become a cornerstone of the menu at Crust since its first opening in 2007. The combination of growing up in the family business and his home-cooking family life led to Michael’s inspiration of opening Crust Simply Italian where he could share an authentic East Coast style of Italian cooking.”