The neighborhood around the intersection of 27th Street West and Bridgeport Way in University Place is about to become Pizza Central.
With both a Pizza Hut and a Roundtable a few blocks from the intersection and a Domino's on nearby 19th Street, the area is already pretty pizzafied. But recent renovations at one of the corner shops in the row of stores next to Walgreens indicate a Godfather's Pizza is going in.
Remember Godfather's? At one time they were much more ubiquitous in the South Sound than they are now. I can't even remember the last time I saw a TV spot featuring their mobster spokesman in his pinstriped suit. When we were kids, my buddies and I would frequent the all-you-can-eat pizza buffet at the Godfather's near South 56th Street and Pacific Avenue. That place died out years ago, and the (also now defunct) one in Lakewood became our go-to joint. I owe much of my girth to their irresistible Jumbo pies.
According to www.godfathers.com, the only Godfather's restaurants in Pierce County are in Spanaway and Bonney Lake and on Fort Lewis. I called to see that, yes, they're all still open. I remember there was a Godfather's near Sixth and Orchard in Tacoma and one on Point Fosdick Drive in Gig Harbor. I'm almost certain there were at least two Godfather's... es in the North End.
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I stopped by the U.P. location the other day and saw that the place had been permitted for electrical work and some signage. It's obvious something is going on inside the former coffeehouse space, but there was nothing to indicate when the new pizza parlor might open its doors. There is a drive-through window on the side of the building, a coffeehouse remnant. Perhaps this new Godfather's will mimic the quickie pizza approach of Little Caesars.
A few blocks west of Bridgeport on 27th, the sign for the popular Pine Cone Cafe indicates the establishment is the "official" restaurant of the 2015 U.S. Open golf tournament. Dan Voelpel wrote a column about it a few months back, and owner Steve Warp recently told me a little bit about the sign.
"There's an official shoe, an official deodorant, official everything," said Warp, a golf fan who has attended a U.S. Open. "It's such a big event. I don't think people realize how big it's going to be. It'll be the biggest sporting event in the world for about a week." Even so, he's not planning to keep the sign up for seven years until the tournament takes over the Chambers Bay course a few miles away.
Given the neighborhood's ongoing pizzafication, one has to wonder if an "official" pizza parlor of the Open will emerge. With his column, Voelpel said it's "open season" for making such unofficial official declarations and even offered a list of suggested tie-ins for other local businesses. To which I'll add: the "wicked slice."