From Gas Station to Gourdough’s: Pizzeria Grata Moves to South Lamar

Wood-fired pizza finds new home

Pizzeria Grata's current home (photo by A. Richmond)

Many have whispered about the little pizzeria located inside a South Austin gas station, one that makes wood-fired pizzas so delicious whole pies were often consumed inside cars, too good to make the trip home.

A few seats used to be available inside the Valero at 4415 Menchaca that Pizzeria Grata called home, but they’re gone now, so customers mostly had no other choice than to take their food to go. But this will change once Pizzeria Grata grows out of the gas station and moves just 2 miles north, to 2700 S. Lamar. A soft opening is scheduled for February.

With the new location comes the promise of a charming place to sit and stay a while to enjoy a wood-fired pie or two. Along with the pizza and sandwiches will be breakfast, including a coffee program and mocktails.

Pizzeria Grata is owned by BelaCor Hospitality, whose executive manager Diego Batista was unable to answer any specific questions. However, he teased in an email something else: “a big project happening at 2700 S. Lamar that involves multiple businesses.”

BelaCor Hospitality also operates 1836 Tacos & Salsas, the Tailor Shop, and Coast2Coast Steak & Hoagies, so it’s easy to imagine that any of those could pop up in the location, if not coexist in some way that Batista isn’t quite ready to say yet.

Pizzeria Grata's pizza oven (photo by A. Richmond)

If the expanded menu is similar to Pizzeria Grata’s staple fare, expect a commitment to cooking with local ingredients and foods imported from Italy, everything made from scratch and always fresh. They are refreshingly transparent about their cooking methods and post recipes online. It’s as if they are daring you to try and imitate their no-cook pizza sauce, made with Texas Olive Ranch olive oil, basil, oregano, sea salt, and a mix of canned San Marzano tomatoes, peeled and crushed. And if you want to imitate it, feel free; their sauce is based on a 100-year-old recipe from Naples.

The new site will be familiar to Austinistes, as it is the former location of Gourdough’s Public House and Kerbey Lane Cafe (the building allegedly originated as an auto parts shop). Gourdough’s vacated the space in November 2022.

The funky neighborhood where Pizzeria Grata operated for almost three years is home to a host of other beloved Austin retail, restaurants, and coffee shops: Radio Coffee & Beer, an outpost of El Chilito, End of an Ear, and Casino El Camino. But Live Oak Market, right across the street from Beatnik’s, closed permanently last year, despite being loved by locals for their excellent beverage and taco program.

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Pizzeria Grata, Diego Batista, BelaCor Hospitality, 1836 Tacos & Salsas, Tailor Shop, Coast2Coast Steak & Hoagies

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