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September 7, 2017
Fresh Face: Rize Pizza
Rize Pizza on Market does, as it promises, elevate pizza. It’s also elevating the idea of what your local pizza place can be. That evolution is the result of a three-generation obsession with what happens when you mix high-quality ingredients (including a non-bromated flour) with creativity.
Jim Haralambidis and Julia Angelos, along with Jim’s son Dean, opened the artisan Rize Pizza downtown West Chester location over the summer — their second location. The first shop is in Broomall.
The signature Rize crust — they also offer a more traditional Neapolitan pie — is thick, but light and airy. Jim worked on creating this crust for 20 years, and in earnest for seven. “He’s kind of a creative genius,” says Dean (he’s the third generation pizza-maker). Jim took notes and photos, documenting and perfecting his recipes until he was satisfied he had something original and delicious. The sesame seeds on the bottom of the pizza add a full and toasty flavor.
“Jim’s the visionary when it comes to the cuisine, and the design of this place,” says Julia. “I concentrate on fine-tuning the business side.” Together we all make a great team and focus on each important part of our business, which is necessary when starting this new venture in West Chester. “There’s a vibrant food scene here, people appreciate quality, and it’s a great town,” she says.
As Rize heads into fall, look for an elevation of the dining experience too — with wait service at night, along with china plates and glassware fit for the BYOB crowd. “We see this as adding a dining destination to a foodie town,” says Julia. “We’re not just another pizza shop.”