There was once a pair of friends who shared the same name. These friends—the Gregs—also shared the belief that even casual food should be fresh. So they put their heads together to found Zaw Artisan Pizza in Seattle, where seasonal, organic, unique, local ingredients (endearingly referred to as "S.O.U.L.") top carefully crafted bake-at-home pies. Diners can watch over the counter as pizza artistes decorate traditional white, whole wheat, or gluten-free crusts with toppings such as free-range chicken breast, hearty spinach, and fresh artisan cheeses. Each pie leaves the shop unfrozen—as evidenced by the lack of freezers in the stores—to be baked to a golden crisp inside the customer's oven or backyard iron forge. To further their commitment to quality, the Gregs strive to source local ingredients from neighborhood farmers' markets whenever possible.
Garlic Jim's menu was handcrafted with nothing more than a dream and an incredible reserve of pizza-making expertise. Open an order with some gourmet chicken wings, available in barbecue, garlic, and hot, before moving on to pizza territory. Put an end to eating Legos by piecing together a custom pie. Choose from the hand-thrown thick, garlic thin, or gluten-free crusts, slathered in one of seven sauces (from classic red to zesty chipotle pesto), and then slap on any of 15 standard and 11 gourmet toppings (14-inch large pizzas start at $11.99, extra-large $14.99; each additional topping for a large is $1.50). To achieve customization without the stress of having to choose, turn to one of the pre-determined specialties. Meat-maul hunger with the Hercules (salami, pepperoni, Canadian bacon, beef, spicy Italian sausage, and bacon; $18.99 for large, $21.99 for extra-large), or discover the secret of pizza-temperature fusion in your head with Jim's bacon-cheeseburger pizza (beef, bacon, red onions, tomatoes, mozzarella, and cheddar; $18.99 for large, $21.99 for extra-large).
With locations now in Washington, Colorado, Oregon, and California, Garlic Jim's Famous Gourmet Pizza has established a loyal following for its brand of premium pies. Here are a few things to know before you sink your teeth into a slice.
The company's slogan is "Gourmet…Right Away!" That's because it aims to combine high-quality pizza with the prompt delivery exhibited by national pizza chains.
Fresh-packed tomatoes are the base of the sauce. Grown in California, these vine-ripened fruits are made into fresh sauce within hours of leaving the farm.
Cornmeal and garlic add texture to the thin-crust dough. The hand-thrown crust, meanwhile, is packed with parmesan cheese and buttermilk for extra flavor.
They introduced gluten-free crust in 2008. Today, Garlic Jim's lengthy gluten-free menu includes hot wings, ribs, and most of the same pizzas from the standard menu.
You'll want to watch for the "Sampling Now" sign. When you spot this sign flashing, it doesn’t mean the area’s electricity grid is acting like jerk. Rather, it means they’re giving away free slices of pizza.