Since opening in 2009, the 8th Avenue Pub has become one of the most popular places in town, thanks to its inviting atmosphere, live music and contributions to the community.
But owner Mike Kelly and his wife, Joan, are always looking for ways to improve their downtown business.
So the couple decided add wood-fired pizza to the menu to compliment the beer, wine and cocktails and feed their hungry customers.
“When I decided to do this, there were no late night food options in town,” Mike Kelly said. “So I wanted to do something to change that.”
Kelly purchased the oven from the old Vincenzo’s Italian restaurant on McMullen Booth Road earlier this year, and after months of expanding the bar, he’s finally selling fresh pies and slices to his patrons.
And the best part is, he got two of the previous Vincenzo’s chefs, Flip and Jason, to come aboard and operate the massive oven.
“It was a package deal,” Chef Jason joked.
According to the chefs, the pies bake at a temperature of 550 degrees over for roughly 10 minutes, with the result being pizza with a crisp but not charred crust that gives it a different flavor from similar products.
Kelly plans to add more menu items in the future, including salads and desserts and possibly sandwiches or subs. It all depends on what the people want.
“We figure out what the community wants and we do it,” he said.
The fact that 8th Ave is a family business – Kelly’s two sons, Daniel and Sean, and daughter Courtney all work at the bar in some capacity, and Flips’ wife Tillie is a popular bartender – makes the connection they have to the community special.
“We’re so grateful to everybody who has embraced us,” Joan Kelly said. "This town is awesome. It’s been a great three years so far.”
Address: 103 8th Ave. N.
Hours: Mon, 7pm - midnight; Tue - Thu, 4pm - midnight; Fri, Sat, 4pm - 3am