Restaurants / Openings

Fort Worth’s New Space-Age Looking Building Houses a Pizza Wonderland Like Few Others

Inside the New Zoli's, the Most Ambitious One Yet

BY // 11.06.19

As locals pondered the tin-wrapped, barrel-vaulted structure, described as a “rounded Quonset-hut style building,” while it was still under construction at 3501 Hulen Street, they had no idea what it might become. Zoli’s Pizza Fort Worth now joins the family of seven successful Cane Rosso Neapolitan-style restaurants located in Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston and Austin, all from restauranteur Jay Jerrier.

Zoli’s Pizza, which is the antithesis of Neapolitan-style, quietly began its soft-opening last week at its brand-new Fort Worth location. It comes complete with a grassy back lawn with play area and a Cow Tipping Creamery on site as well.

“Zoli’s is obviously a really different restaurant than Cane Rosso,” Jerrier tells PaperCity. “It’s closer to the Italian American restaurants I ate at growing up in the Northeast. You don’t get a bod like this from eating poké every weekend.

“We obviously have pizza at our core, but the menu is not really limited to just that. …It’s the kind of place that you can hang out at and not have to eat pizza every time.”

The colorful and eclectic decor lends a heavy nod to Star Wars fanatics, and includes graffiti art incorporating everything from Godzilla to the TCU Horned Frog. Be on the look-out for a trio of Zoli’s signature unicorn heads in the design, too.

Zoli’s Fort Worth
Zoli’s takes over a distinctive hanger-like building in Fort Worth.

Owner Jay Jerrier’s sense of humor is ever-present, even posing in front of the perfunctory Instagram backdrop wall ― which in this case, is decorated with angel wings, made of pepperoni pizza slices and an iconic quote from the philosopher Michael Gary Scott himself: “You have no idea how high I can fly.”

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Calling it “quirky” would be a major understatement. But don’t underestimate the pizza.

The New York-style pizzeria won accolades in its original Dallas/Bishop Arts location, and followed up with a move to Addison, where PILF Restaurant Group’s chief culinary officer Jeff Bekavac and executive pizzaiolo Lee Hunzinger transformed Zoli’s from a counter service by-the-slice pizza joint to a full-service pizza and casual Italian restaurant.

Zoli’s offers a selection of East Coast dishes such as New York-style pizzas (in both 14-inch round pie and 12-inch square versions), pastas, sandwiches and desserts.

Zoli’s Fort Worth Flair

Highlights from the Zoli’s Fort Worth menu include the Dope Sopp’ ― Chef Lee Hunzinger’s Caputo Cup-award-winning pizza ― topped with tomato sauce, hot soppressata, creamy ricotta cheese and soppressata marmalade. Another favorite is called the Fat Staxx ― a New York style pizza with double pepperoni, mushrooms, cherry pepper ricotta and drizzled with habanero honey.

“We had been looking for a cool location for our second Zoli’s practically since we got our Addison location opened,” Jerrier says. “When the landlord presented this opportunity to us with a huge green space and a hangar style building, we were sold.

“We thought we could do some really cool things with the interior architecture and also squeeze a Cow Tipping Creamery in, too. We have a lot of restaurant buddies in Fort Worth, so we have some fun mashups on the menu to start and more planned in the future.”

A first for Fort Worth and a first pairing for Zoli’s, is the addition of Cow Tipping Creamery. It features a walk-up window where guests can order the treat shop’s signature Stackers (layered sundaes), milkshakes, housemade bubble waffle cones and more.

Zoli’s Fort Worth
Zoli’s Fort Worth includes a creamery.

Cow Tipping Creamery specializes in pairing its unique scratch-made toppings with soft serve ice cream. Some are exclusive to Cow Tipping Creamery Fort Worth, including a collaboration Stacker with Swiss Pastry Shop’s chef and owner Hans Peter Muller. Chef Muller supplies his legendary Black Forest Cake for a Stacker featuring vanilla and chocolate soft serve swirl, crunchy cake pieces, housemade hot fudge, chocolate sprinkles and whipped cream.

This new Fort Worth restaurant in the distinctive building brings a little bit of everything.

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