One of Austin's most popular pizza joints is moving into one of Houston's hottest 'hoods. Home Slice Pizza has revealed it will take over the former t'afia/Sparrow space at 3701 Travis St. for a restaurant that will open in early 2021, according to a release.
The location has long seemed like a strong possibility since Home Slice first revealed it was adding its first location outside the Austin city limits this past October. Choosing the Mid Main neighborhood puts Home Slice in close proximity to Houston's location of The Continental Club (just like South Congress) as well as a bustling bar and restaurant district.
Opening in Midtown represents a sort of homecoming for Home Slice co-founder Joseph Strickland, who grew up in Sharpstown.
"Midtown is evolving into the most walkable, dense neighborhood in Houston, making it a perfect fit for the Home Slice brand, which is rooted in the pizzerias and slice joints of NYC,” Joseph Strickland said in a statement. “I am personally thrilled to be part of the team bringing Home Slice to my hometown.”
Home Slice's original location on South Congress has a fairly constant line as people wait for slices of its signature New York-style pies, salads, and sandwiches. A second location in Hyde Park opened in 2018. Craft beer and Italian wines offer diners pizza-friendly beverage choices.
"Although pizza was invented in Italy, it was perfected in NYC and grew from there into an integral part of the American food experience. We are simply aiming to uphold that original legacy of the hand-tossed pizza pie,” co-founder Jen Strickland added. “We love the diverse food culture Houston has to offer and we are overjoyed and excited to have the opportunity to bring Home Slice here.”
The New York-style slice joint has earned wide acclaim since its first location opened in 2005, including being named among the top pizzeria in the U.S. by both TripAdvisor and TripSavvy. Beyond its food, the restaurant has a reputation for providing warm, friendly service that's above and beyond what most people expect at a pizzeria.
Over the last year or so, Houston has seen an increase in the number of dedicated pizzerias and restaurants that serve pizza as part of their menu. The list includes Neapolitan-style pizzeria Gypsy Poet, BOH Pasta and Pizza in downtown's Bravery Chef Hall, the restaurant at Buffalo Bayou Brewing Company's new facility in Sawyer Yards, and Austin's Southside Flying Pizza, which opened in the Second Ward last fall.