Another contender in the race to become "the Chipotle of pizza" has arrived in Houston. Urban Bricks, a San Antonio-based chain, offers a couple of twists on the formula that has allowed competitors like Mod Pizza and Blaze Fast-Fire’d Pizza to find success in the Bayou City.
First, the new location at 12161 Westheimer Rd. features a drive-thru, which definitely makes it more convenient for a family looking to pick up a couple of pies to take home. Second, where many pizzerias only offer beer and wine, Urban Bricks features a full-service bar that includes cocktails.
Beyond that, the formula will feel pretty pretty familiar. Every Urban Bricks pizza starts with dough that's made fresh daily; diners may choose from white, wheat, and "gluten-friendly." From there, choose a sauce option like red, spicy red, or white. Seven cheeses, including a vegan options, get paired with seven different meats (no vegan options here), 10 different veggies, and eight "drizzles."
No matter how many toppings someone chooses, the price remains the same (vegan cheese and gluten-friendly crust are extra). Pizza are baked in a rotating oven that turns raw dough into finished pie in about two minutes.
Panini, pasta, salads, and wings are available for those looking for not-pizza. Gelato and dessert pizzas (topped with bananas, powdered sugar, and Nutella) offer a sweet finish.
Urban Bricks was founded in 2015 by Sammy Aldeeb, an entrepreneur who previously owned franchises of Marble Slab Creamery, Subway, and Great American Cookie Co. before launching his own brand. Local franchisee Alane Middleton comes to the restaurant from the salon world; she owns 10 locations of Snip-it’s Haircuts for Kids .
“I am excited to embark on Urban Bricks Westheimer to add another store to the Urban Bricks Texas line-up,” Middleton said in a statement. “I am happy to share what captivated me about Urban Bricks with my fellow Houstonians. The flavorful and fresh food along with its unique atmosphere will make this new location a hot spot. Whether it be our signature Neapolitan pizza, wings, or craft beer, this location is the perfect place for shoppers nearby to take a break and try something new. I know the Houston community will love it.”
Whether that's true remains to be seen of course, but combining the convenience of a drive-thru with a diverse menu that includes healthy options certainly seems like a winning formula. If it is, expect Middleton to open more restaurants in the future.