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Friday, February 13, 2015

Sir Pizza: A Little Slice of Hoosier Heaven in the Piedmont



Sir Pizza: A Little Slice of Hoosier Heaven in the Piedmont
I’m originally from Richmond, IN, known for Earlham College, Tom Raper RVs, being the “Birthplace of Recorded Jazz,” and also for this funky little pizza chain that serves awesome pizza with tiny chopped up pieces of pepperoni. Richmond’s not that big of a town, about 40,000 people, but we have not one, not two, not three, but FOUR of these pizza shops around town! That’s how much we love this particular pizza.
Recently, I moved here to the Piedmont area from the frozen tundra of rural Illinois, where the closest thing to a good pizza was a round piece of cardboard with some tomato soup thrown at it and a couple pepperoni’s and some stale cheese tossed on for good measure. Sadly, where we were there was no “Chicago style” to be found! On the way down, we passed through Richmond, and I desperately wanted to stop at my favorite pizza restaurant that all the locals know as “Clara’s,” which has a double decker British city bus inside the restaurant, where people can eat their pizza while looking at all of the interesting décor like bicycles and beaded curtains hanging from the ceiling, or the porch swings that you can sit on while dining on heavenly pizza, and where every table has a Tiffany lamp lighting your meal. But we were running late, so I had to settle for a quick burger at a truck stop.
So, imagine my surprise when I dropped my wife off at work one morning in High Point, and spotted on my way a place called “Sir Pizza.” I was intrigued. I saw the cool little Tiffany lamp logo, and thought to myself, “Is this place like ‘Clara’s?’ No, couldn’t be, that’s a Hoosier thing. Couldn’t even find one in Illinois. Why would there be one here?” So I went home.
A couple days later, I was driving by again, and this time went all the way through High Point, and saw another Sir Pizza. So that night, I gathered my family and decided to give it a try. “Tonight my children, you will experience True Pizza.” I felt like a lonely prophet beholding the Promised Land after years of wandering in the wilderness. For years I had told them that such pizza existed somewhere in the world, but alas, rural Illinois did not offer pizza of that variety. I walked in and asked the friendly lady behind the counter for a menu, and then probed, “Do you guys (I’m not quite southern yet, y’all) make your pizza with the tiny little pepperonis?”
“Yes, we sure do.”
Suddenly, the rapture happened, and I stood before the throne of God with angels singing anthems of delight! Well, no, that didn’t quite happen, but I was pretty happy. So I got my 8 inch “Royal Feast” for me and my wife, and a Hawaiian 16 inch for the kids and went home, happy as could be. My kids, who for so long went without true pizza ate it with joy, declaring it to be the best pizza they ever ate (though, compared to cardboard pizza, real tomato sauce on a cracker would be a step in the right direction). But it really wasn’t much of a surprise to see all of the “Best Pizza” awards displayed behind the counter.
So while I was waiting for my pizza of infinite bounty and delight, I found out from the lady behind the counter that Sir Pizza did indeed originate in Indiana, but she didn’t know all of the particulars. I don’t know if it is directly connected with the pizza chain from Richmond, but to find such a treasure of Hoosier happiness down here in my new home made me so happy. I have lived all over the country, Indiana, Texas, Georgia, New York and yes, the frozen tundra of rural Illinois, but I have to say that moving to Winston-Salem has been one of my happiest moves. I love it here, and am so thankful for a place to find some good pizza!



About the Author:
Willy Minnix is a seasoned music teacher, author, sound technician and multi-instrumentalist. He lives and teaches in Winston-Salem with his wife and four budding musicians! His book “Mandolin: Dead Man’s Tuning Vol. 1” is one of the only books on the market that delves into alternate tunings for Mandolin. You can find out more information about Willy, his books, or the instruments he teaches at his website www.willyminnix.com

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