Nonno’s Family Pizza Tavern will launch sometime this summer, serving up Midwestern tavern-style pizzas in a square shape with a side of nostalgia. Nonno’s promises a retro arcade area with pinball machines and shuffleboard, neon accents, vintage furniture, and Tiffany pendant light fixtures that harken back to old-style pizzerias, according to a release. The restaurant will also throw it way back, featuring curated mixtapes played on two reel-to-reel machines.
Focaccia-style pan pizza by the slice will also be available, but pizza won’t be the only thing on offer. Diners will find snacks, salads, and desserts like cheesecakes and cookies. Located next door to the Toasted Coconut, Nonno’s plans to upkeep the Stayers’ reputation of being a place to unwind with drinks, with a large covered patio, a robust wine list featuring natural wines, and a rotation of draft beers.
The Stayers’ recent focus on Midwestern tavern-style pizza is inspired by their meeting in Chicago, where tavern-style pizza is said to have originated. The thin-crust pizza was made popular during the Great Depression when bar owners sought out ways to lure in customers and factory workers. They’d often cook up the pizza, then cut them into squares and pass the slices around the bar on napkins, hoping they’d order another drink, according to an Esquire article. The pizza eventually became a classic.
The Strayers wrote in a release that the restaurant will be a place to foster a connection, which is one of the most rewarding aspects of their work.
“This place is designed for people to get away from their modern technology and eat some pizza, play some games, and connect with us and each other,” they wrote.
Nonno’s Family Pizza Tavern will be open from 4 p.m. to midnight Tuesday through Sunday. 1613 Richmond Avenue, 77006.