That’s A Some Pizza’s Will Grant will be bringing his award-winning pies back to Kingston with the new eatery Sourdough Willy’s.
With him, Grant is bringing his famous 120-year-old sourdough starter used in his famous pizza crust and bread. It won’t just be the menu changing at the Kingston location either, Grant is currently in the process of renovating the former Drifter’s location ahead of his restaurant’s opening.
“It’s spent the last 32 years as a tavern, hangout and a pool hall and now we’re turning it into a family restaurant,” Grant said. “There were 23 taps here, we’re going back to I think, like three or four tap handles here, and we’re going to have hard alcohol.”
Grant noted that one of Sourdough Willy’s specialties will be their bloody mary, which he said will come complete with a miniature Detroit-style pizza, crowning the cocktail.
In addition to the restaurant’s potent potables, Grant said Willy’s will have 3 different pizza ovens, one of which will be wood-fired and will make four different styles of pizza: New York, Detroit, Sicilian and a Roman-style pizza al taglio.
“It uses special flours and a lot of water and it’s served in big rectangles,” Grant explained of pizza al taglio. “It’s bigger, looks fluffier but it’s actually a crunchier kind of pizza.”
Sicilian-style pizzas, Grant said, were unique in that they are baked twice.
“We use our New York dough and we proof it in a pan and then we bake it off and we cook it again for a second time. It’s bigger, fluffier, but it’s actually less-heavy because it’s proofed and it has so much air in the crust,” he said. “Detroit style is the same as the Sicilian, except it’s done in smaller rectangles and on the second cook, you actually put white cheddar cheese along the crust. So there’s a caramelized white, cheddar cheese crust.”
In 2017 Grant and company came home with top three finishes in two of the four divisions at the Caputo Cup pizza competition in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Grant himself, even took home first place from among more than 40 pizza chefs in the non-traditional category for his Gorgonzola vegetarian pizza. Instead of trying to continue to make fish and chips, Grant said Sourdough Willy’s will stick to what he knows.
“We are not going to be keeping the fish and chips or the burgers. It was something we were going to try to do but you just can’t do good burgers on a griddle like that. We’re pizza, that’s what we do,” Grant said, noting that he would be holding a restaurant sale the weekend of Oct. 5 in order to sell some of the kitchen’s remnants from Drifter’s.
Grant estimates that Sourdough Willy’s will open in three or four months, and when the purveyors of pizza finally do open their doors, Grant said it will be a homecoming of sorts.
“1984 is when we first opened up That’s A Some Pizza here, right around the corner. The old laundromat was the original That’s A Some Pizza,” Grant said. “That’s where it all started, that’s where we got our 120-year-old sourdough starter. It’s neat to be coming home here to Kingston.”
—Nick Twietmeyer is a reporter for the North Kitsap Herald. Nick can be reached at email@example.com