Crust Pizza, Chattanooga TN

I saw a sign for a pizza place and was amused by the color and the lettering. Then, because I’m whimsical, we went to a different location instead of the one that caught my eye.

Several weeks ago, I decided that we really needed to try a few more local pizza places rather than just settling on Lupi’s. Then I noticed, to the point of it registering, the colorful Crust building, which was an old Long John Silver’s not fooling anybody with its new tenant. Crust is owned by the same terrific trio who run Aretha Frankenstein’s and Sofa King Juicy Burger: Greg Beairsto, Jeff Brakebill and Tim Kelly.

Looking into it further, I learned that they specialize in a “superfamouscrackerthincrust,” and they had a second location just a little closer to our home. There had been a third, about fifty minutes away in Sewanee (my favorite pizza blog, The Pizza Snob, had visited three years ago ), but that location has closed and they’re down to the two these days. I glanced at their menu online and noticed that some of their pizzas had been given some names that I could get behind: names like Sleestak, Isis, and Sigmund. If you’re following our Fire-Breathing Dimetrodon Time blog (and if you aren’t, then whyever not?), then you probably know those are just the sort of names to bring us a smile.

A few Saturdays back, we went out around dusk to try the pies at the Broad Street location. It was a grim evening; readers outside our area may not have heard that there were several fires burning on the drought-ravaged mountains of eastern Tennessee and north Georgia. (Well, actually, since I first wrote this draft, it’s much more likely that you heard about it, what with the massive destruction that came to Gatlinburg a couple of weeks later.)

This was one of those days where the smoke was blowing into the “bowl” where Chattanooga sits. Back in the early seventies, when this city had several aging foundries going, it was said that the air quality was so bad that nobody wanted to go outside. Those days during the fire when the smoke settled down reminded older residents of those bad days.

Georgia was eking out a win over Auburn as we took a table. Like the decor at Aretha Frankenstein’s, this is a place in love with the past. Our table had a centerpiece collage of old stuff, mainly toys and lunchboxes from my childhood: Steve Austin dolls, spacehoppers, and Gnip Gnop. Pretty soon, this got covered with a hummus appetizer, served with pizza crust chips.

We were here for pizza, and I insisted on trying the Sleestak. This comes with pepperoni, Italian sausage, mushrooms, and ricotta cheese. We all really enjoyed it, although our son did have to insist on the mushrooms being removed from his slices. I thought it was a great mix of flavors and I certainly liked that cracker thin crust. I knew that I’d like that element more than the rest of my family. They prefer a chewier crust than this, but were willing to indulge me for the novelty.

I’d like to come back for lunch one day soon. They have a $6 buffet that sounds like something I could really dig into. It was a good evening with great service and good pizza. And the Dawgs won, which is always nice, if not always guaranteed these days.

Crust Pizza
3211 Broad St
Chattanooga, TN 37408

You can see all the restaurants that we have visited for our blog on this map, with links back to the original blog posts. It’s a terrific resource for anybody planning a road trip through the southeast!