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Wick’s Pizza to open ‘by-the-slice’ restaurant in Nulu

Wick's Pizza to open 'by-the-slice' restaurant in Nulu

This article was written by Eleanor Tolbert and originally appeared in Louisville Business First on June 21, 2023.

A local pizza place is teaming up with a NuLu bar to offer pizza by the slice.

Wick’s Pizza has signed a lease to open in the building at 811 E. Market St. The building is owned by two local investors: Jon Grell, retail broker for Pluris Real Estate, and Todd Moore, owner of NuLu bar Taj, located right next door.

Grell said in an email he and Moore acquired the building with plans to expand Taj’s back patio. According to the deed, the duo purchased it for $1.3 million.

They realized a grab-and-go-style restaurant would also be a great addition for late night customers.

“Todd and I have noticed for years that there has been a void in the NuLu area to eat after all the restaurants close around 10 p.m.,” Grell said. “We thought this space would be perfect to add a local pizzeria, and Wick’s Slice was the ideal choice.”

Mike Wickliffe, owner of Wick’s Pizza, said this Wick’s concept will be an abbreviated version of the original restaurant. It will only sell pizza by the slice, or 14-inch and 16-inch whole pizzas.

Customers from Taj will be able to get pizza from Wick’s and take it to the patio. Wickliffe said there’s seating for about 20 people in the building’s second floor, and the business is planning to put a garage door in the front window to sell slices on the street.

“They’re expanding the patio behind my new business here, and it’ll all be kind of tied together,” Wickliffe said. “I’ll be able to serve food out into the Taj, all the people on the patio will be able to eat pizza out back.”

When it comes to drinks, Wick’s will only be selling beer, and customers can get other kinds of drinks at Taj. Wickliffe said he plans to keep the beer prices the same as that of Taj’s.

The 1,600-square-foot space will have a small renovation. The buildout will create an open concept so guests can see where the pizza is made. Wickliffe said the total investment will be about $150,000 to $175,000, which includes equipment.

There will be about 10 employees at that location. Wick’s, established in 1991, also has locations at 975 Baxter Ave. and 3348 Hikes Lane.

Wickliffe is anticipating the new location will open in September. Once it’s operating, the pizza restaurant will be open until midnight during the week and 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday (and closed on Monday).

At first, Wick’s in NuLu will probably open around 2 p.m., Wickliffe said. Eventually, he wants the shop to be open for lunch.

This isn’t Grell’s first NuLu investment. He and brother Henry Grell purchased the building at 900 E. Market St. in 2020, which has since become Guaca Mole.