Pizzeria Locale closing original Boulder location for a name change

After 12 years on Boulder’s Pearl Street, Bobby Stuckey thought it was time for Pizzeria Locale to get a bit of a refresh. And not just a fresh coat of paint.

On Jan. 1, Stuckey and co-owner Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson plan to close Pizzeria Locale’s original location in Boulder and rebrand the Neapolitan pizza restaurant as Pizzeria Alberico.

“We’re 12 years in, and we’re still having as much fun as we did in year one,” said Stuckey, who is also the force behind Frasca, Tavernetta and Sunday Vinyl. “We just want to make sure we keep having fun for decades to come, and we just thought this refresh would help do that.”

Pizzeria Alberico, 1738 Pearl Street, will open in the second week of February with a new look — Pizzeria Locale’s usual black and white tile design will be replaced by more color and texture, like a wood-grained floor. The menu will remain centered around Neapolitan pizza, however, and will keep mainstays like the Budino butterscotch pudding; more salads and entrees will be added.

Five other Pizzeria Locale locations in Colorado are operated by Chipotle, in a joint venture with Stuckey and Mackinnon-Patterson. But the Boulder spot has always solely been under the duo’s ownership and is the only restaurant in the chain that will get a rebrand.

“They’re really different restaurants, and have been since the inception, but they just have the same name,” Stuckey said. “Pizzeria Locale in Boulder has always had a wine list, a wait staff, a host at the front door, table service, things like that.” The other locations don’t.

The new name is also a nod to Stuckey’s in-laws. Alberico is his wife Danette’s maiden name. Her family is originally from San Vittorino, Italy, and immigrated first to Illinois before moving to Colorado years later. Stuckey, who is a sommelier, said that Danette’s father, Dick, is the reason he and Mackinnon-Patterson opened both Pizzeria Locale and Frasca.

“Everything I know about Italian wine and food culture came from her family, and they’re the reason I became so motivated to start these restaurants. So I thought this would be a great way to honor them,” Stuckey said.

Pizzeria Locale was founded in 2010. Stuckey and Mackinnon-Patterson later struck a deal with Chipotle in 2013 and expanded to Kansas City and Cincinnati with a fast-casual model similar to Chipotle’s. Customers order at that counter and pick out their own customizable ingredients.

But in 2018, Chipotle closed its five out-of-state Pizzeria Locale restaurants to focus on its Colorado growth. At the time, there were two restaurants in Boulder and Denver. Since then, the partnership has added three more in Denver. A sixth location is coming to Greenwood Village on Dec. 9.

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