Detroit Style Pizza Restaurant Coming to Power Plant Live!
Detroit-style pizza concept Underground Pizza will be opening its first brick-and-mortar location at Power Plant Live! Downtown. Underground Pizza will take over a 1,400 sq. ft. space at the plaza that was formerly the home of Joe Squared and Charm City Pizza.
Underground Pizza was started as a pop-up pizza business over the summer by Evan Weinstein and Patrick Morrow. Weinstein, who has worked in the music and events industry for 20 years, fell in love with a tent by Detroit Style Pizza Co. at a music festival in Ohio. Detroit-style pizza is a thick pan pizza with burnt cheese edges and the sauce poured on top of the cheese.
Weinstein said he would spend hundreds of dollars on pizza and tried bringing Detroit Style Pizza Co. to Moonrise Festival, a Baltimore festival he is a partner in. Morrow and Weinstein also discussed doing their own Detroit-style pizza tent at Moonrise, but the event was cancelled this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Weinstein started making Detroit-style pizzas at home and was posting pictures to his Instagram page. Followers began asking if they could buy pies and the business organically began. This came at a good time as Weinstein, who has a young family, needed a new source of income as the event industry came to a halt. Underground Pizza was launched and they soon began working out of the kitchen at Abbey Burger Bistro in Mount Washington and later at Pig & Rooster in Canton to offer carryout. Underground Pizza is also hosting Sunday pop-ups at Boca Botanas in Gaithersburg.
Morrow and Weinstein started looking for their own commissary to run Underground Pizza, but when they took a look at the space at Power Plant Live!, which is already set up as a pizza shop, they saw an opportunity to operate more than just a satellite business.
Underground Pizza will cook the pizzas in convection ovens, although the Power Plant Live! pizza shop still has the coal-fired oven from Joe Squared. Weinstein said they will also play around with Neapolitan-style pizzas in the coal-fired oven and are also working on a gluten-free Detroit-style pizza that will be served a certain night each week. They will also have Pizza Lab nights to experiment on different creations.
Morrow and Weinstein are working on permits and inspections and hope to open as early as December 1st. It will offer pizzas for pickup and delivery in a four-mile radius. Weinstein said the centralized location allows them to hit most areas of Baltimore with delivery.
Weinstein said they are not sure if Underground Pizza will offer dine-in to start, but it will eventually have table seating and serve alcoholic beverages.
While Downtown is slow right now as many people are working from home and events venues like Power Plant Live! are restricted, Weinstein said they crunched the numbers and don’t need those crowds for the business to thrive. But, he said it will be an extra bonus when things return to normal and they are able to stay open until 2am or 3am on the weekends.
Underground Pizza will sell half pies (starting at $13) and whole pies. Popular pizzas include The Flag with one stripe of pesto and one stripe of red sauce; The Tiger King with bacon, spicy Italian sausage, pepperoni, red sauce, and a drizzle of hot honey; The Carol Baskin (aka The Garden) which is a vegan pizza that is a traditional tomato pie with nutritional yeast, cherry tomatoes, garlic, spinach, and herbs; and The Funfetti which is the The Flag but also topped with peppers and onion sautéed in pork fat and spicy Italian sausage.
Underground Pizza will be open five days a week for dinner and may add some lunch hours.