SURPRISE, AZ — Reel Pizza Pies, a pizzeria in Surprise, Arizona, planned to open in March, but because of the COVID-19 pandemic, those plans had to be put on hold.
Nearly two months later, owner Kaleb Copenhaver turned on the ovens last week and officially opened the doors to his pizzeria near Waddell and Litchfield roads.
"It’s all about the pies and vibes," he told ABC15 during a Zoom video conference last week.
The pizzeria's name, Real Pizza Pies, combines his passions for music and, of course, pizza.
"We have a wall full of cassette tapes back here," he said. "And that's where "reel" comes from. Same for the pizza. It's real pizza, honest pizza." (In case you were wondering, Copenhaver said there are roughly 700 cassette tapes on the side wall.)
Copenhaver said he worked at a pizzeria in high school and worked his way up through the ranks. Opening his own pizzeria was something he always wanted to do and when he had the chance, Surprise was the place to do it.
"I grew up in Surprise pretty much, most go my life, the majority of my life. About 15 years now," he said. "I’ve always felt it lacked something, especially in a restaurant, something that’s non-franchised. They really care about the community. When I decided to open a pizzeria, there’s nowhere else I’d rather do it. Surprise deserves something good and this is my home."
He said most of the items they serve are made in-house.
"Our dough is naturally leavened, similarly to a sourdough, where we use no commercial yeast," he said. To him, this gives his pizza more complex flavors and makes it easier to digest, he said.
Pizza is the main staple on the menu, but they also have a few sandwiches and salads.
IF YOU GO:
Reel Pizza Pies
13953 W Waddell Rd., Surprise, AZ 85379
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