Try both Chicago, New York-style pizzas at Two Cities Pizza in Suwanee

Zach Greves and Sean Spurlock have been best friends since attending elementary school in Cincinnati. As early as high school, they knew they wanted to go into business together.

Looking to combine their love of entrepreneurship and food, the pair honed in on opening a pizza concept after college. They were inspired by their difference of opinion on the best style of pizza: Greves was a big Chicago deep-dish pizza fan, while Spurlock favored thin, foldable New York-style slices.

Why not put the two under one roof and let customers decide? With that concept in mind, the friends opened Two Cities Pizza Co. in a Cincinnati suburb in 2016. They expanded this week with a second location at 3433 Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road in Suwanee.

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Credit: Payton West

Credit: Payton West

While developing the menu, they met with restaurateurs at some of their favorite Chicago and New York pizza spots, and developed different dough recipes for each style of pizza with the help of dough consultants. Ingredients for the two kinds of sauces were sourced from distributors used by pizzerias in the two cities, and the whole milk mozzarella cheese used for the Chicago deep-dish comes from a Wisconsin farm.

Greves and Spurlock also invested in two different kinds of pizza ovens to accommodate the different cook times for each style.

“It’s a complex operation, but it’s a really fun concept for our customers,” Spurlock said. “Most groups come in and they’ll get a New York and Chicago, and we joke around with them about the great pizza debate. Usually by the end of the night, two of them prefer the New York and two of them prefer the Chicago, and then they come back and do it all over again.”

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Credit: Payton West

Credit: Payton West

The menu includes several kinds of New York-style and Chicago deep-dish pizzas, and guests can also build their own pizza of either style. Gluten-free and vegan options are available for New York-style pizzas.

The menu also holds a variety of salads, appetizers like Parmesan fries and fried pickles, and a handful of kids’ menu options.

On the beverage side, look for several cocktails, frozen drinks and wines. The beer selection includes several Chicago and New York brands as well as the Ale of Two Cities Pale Ale, brewed specifically for the restaurant by Suwanee-based Stillfire Brewing.

Touches of the Big Apple and the Windy City are woven into the restaurant’s décor. Guests are greeted by a New York City yellow cab at the entrance, an outdoor patio is designed to look like a Chicago L train, and the interior features a Wrigley Field sign hung on an ivy-covered wall.

The restroom includes a New York subway platform and train car along with subway handles and graffiti on the walls. It’s a duplicate of the restroom at its sister restaurant in Cincinnati, which won Cintas’ America’s Best Bathroom Award in 2021.

The 9,000-square-foot space, which can accommodate about 300 guests, features Suwanee’s only rooftop bar complete with fire pits and lighting, with an additional bar inside on the first floor.

When the business partners eyed metro Atlanta for their expansion plans, they settled on Suwanee because it was “an amazing place” where they saw “an opportunity to fill a void,” according to Greves.

Two Cities is starting out offering dine-in service only, with plans to add takeout and delivery in the coming weeks.

Opening hours are 3-10 p.m. Tuesdays-Thursdays, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays and 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Sundays.

3433 Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road, Suwanee. 678-889-2625, twocitiespizza.com/

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