FENWICK ISLAND – Bella Pizzeria opened this month on Route 54 in Delaware, bringing specialties from its sister store on Ocean City’s Boardwalk to southern Delaware.
Bella Pizzeria, located on Route 54 in West Fenwick Station near Harris Teeter, opened its doors on Jan. 5.
Sean and Laura King co-own the restaurant with Hungry Surfer owner Jim Rawls.
“It is good and steadily getting better each day…with the local crowd here the word to mouth has been getting out,” Sean King said.
Bella Pizzeria came about when Rawls looked into the vacant space and called King, who worked in home improvements, to come take a look and see what it would take to have the restaurant become operational once again. King ended up giving the place a make-over with some improvements, including tile work, some new equipment and a fresh coat of pastel yellow paint to brighten up the place.
Looking to get out of the construction field, King offered to manage the new restaurant for Rawls, but instead Rawls offered a 50-50 partnership with King, who had attended culinary school, and his wife, who had recently received a Restaurant and Business Management Degree.
“So one thing led to another … I have always had a passion for cooking,” King said.
King couldn’t be happier with the location, as the shopping center is a busy place with mostly locals coming and going around this time of the year and only gets busier with visitors in the summer time.
“I got a rude awakening on our first Friday night open, we were busy,” he said. “It is a good time for us to open and iron the kinks out because some summer time I think we are going to be really busy here.”
Bella Pizzeria carried over the Hungry Surfer’s pizza recipe, which is a New York style with their own blend of Grande Cheese that includes mozzarella, provolone and a little bit of monetary jack with a semi-sweet sauce. The pizza dough is not frozen, but instead delivered from the Fresh Dough Company out of Baltimore.
The new restaurant also offers the Hungry Surfer’s famous home-made pretzels — plain, salted and cinnamon. Plus, one of the house favorites is a crabby pretzel with fresh home-made crab dip made of jumbo lump crab meat topped with melted cheddar cheese.
With a gym located next door, King wants to make sure to offer healthy choices, such as fresh salads, with the Caprese being a popular choice made of buffalo mozzarella, fresh basil, summer-ripe Campari tomatoes, drizzled with extra-virgin olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette.
Bella Pizzerias specialties also include jumbo lump crabcake sandwiches, Stromboli and calzone. The menu goes on to include a variety of appetizers, cold and hot subs made with Dietz and Watson deli meats, burgers, pasta, plus a kids menu.
There are daily specials available, such as buy three pretzels, get one free. Also, two slices of cheese pizza and 16 oz. drink is currently $4.99 or for two slices of pepperoni and the drink is $5.99.
“We are a fresh house with more fresh ingredients,” King said. “It’s a good quality of products.” Bella Pizzeria currently offers eat-in and carry-out operation and is looking to provide delivery service by the beginning of summer once an employee base is built for the busy season. The restaurant also plans to expand its menu into the future, such as the addition of gourmet pizzas.