Nomad Pizza Company is set to open on February 10 at 611 South 7th Street, bringing their very popular wood-fired pies to the former Horizons location. Owners Tom Grim and Stalin Bedon have put the finishing touches on the space, and have been churning out practice pies for a few weeks.
"We're ready, it's just a matter of the city doing their thing," said Grim. "But, there's good energy here, Philly is really having a pizza renaissance, and we're excited to be a part of it."
The design of the space is centered around long communal tables on both floors, which Grim said has been surprisingly popular at their Hopewell, NJ location.
"Americans generally aren't all about sitting with people they don't know. But, we see in our original spot that even with open tables, customers choose the communal table," said Grim. "Pizza is apparently a friendly food."
Nomad will offer alcohol, but only wine and beer, as they seem to be better partners with pizza as opposed to hard liquor. Grim also has plans to do a weekly movie night in the upstairs parlor, in homage to the beer theaters of the Pacific Northwest.
"Out in Portland, they have these great places to drink beer and watch movies. I don't know why more people don't do that here, but we're going to try. The wall on the second floor is perfect for just such a thing," said Grim.
We asked him about the local competition, with Stephen Starr's Pizzeria Stella so close by, and Grim said he wasn't too worried.
"Starr's pizza is good, it's definitely a good pie. I think it's better than Osteria, which everyone seems to love. But the oven at Osteria is used for more than pizza, so the temperature changes alot," said Grim. "As for Starr, we think we've been doing this long enough, and have enough local fans to do just fine. We think our pie is better."
Grim is apparently correct in regards to local support, as the restaurant,—which as yet to open,—already has five reviews on Yelp.
Nomad Pizza in New Jersey has a serious following that drives people in from all over the East Coast, and even attracted a few world-famous pizzaiolos, including San Fran superstar Anthony Mangieri to their humble shop. "I was pretty excited," said Grim. "And he loved the food. Can't ask for a bigger vote of confidence."