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Adelo's goes from take-and-bake to sit-down

In a North Spokane shopping center that once was home to many food options, only a few establishments have been able to survive. Adelo's Pizza is one of them.

Adelo's opened more than four years ago as a strictly carry-out establishment, offering ready-to-bake pizza and bottled beer, but in September moved to a nearby storefront allowing for an eat-in option and a new menu.

The pizza place's new digs are still in the Sundance Shopping Center in the Northside's Indian Trail neighborhood. Before relocating, Adelo's — then called Adelo's Take-N-Bake Pizza — was sandwiched between a Subway and an Albertson's; now it's visible from the high-traffic arterial bisecting the neighborhood. The restaurant took over a space vacated a few years ago by a locally owned Taco Del Mar franchise; aside from the McDonald's and Subway also in the complex, the only other sit-down restaurant in a radius of more than a mile is JJ's Grill & Brewhouse.

Adelo's top competitor, Bennidito's Pizza, left the Indian Trail neighborhood about a year ago, and Adelo's co-owner Matthew Howes says that departure influenced his decision to expand both the restaurant's size and menu.

"When they shut their doors, the neighborhood wanted a pizza place," says Howes, who also lives in the area. "People wondered if I'd do sit-down, and business was good, but there wasn't enough space in the old spot."

After deciding on the move, Howes and business partner Steve Vesneske hired George Turner — former chef at Geno's, the Gonzaga-area eatery that reopened under new ownership in October — to expand the menu beyond pizza to include pasta, salads, wraps and sandwiches. Adelo's continues to focus on offering gluten-free pizza crust, and Howe says Turner's culinary experience was crucial to also creating gluten-free pasta options.

While Adelo's still offers mix-and-match six-packs of carry-out beer, the new spot allowed for 18 tap handles that rotate between local and regional microbrews. Customers can also fill growlers.

Still, pizza is where Adelo's excels, with generously topped specialty pies like the BBQ Pulled Pork and the Meat Madness (both $16 for a 15-inch crust). Though many customers may still prefer to bake at home, Adelo's new stone pizza oven produces a crispy, slightly charred crust that conventional ovens just can't match. ♦

Adelo's Pizza, Pasta & Pints • 8801 N. Indian Trail Rd. • Sun-Wed, 11 am-10 pm; Thu-Sat, 11 am-11 pm • 464-0110 • adelospizza.com

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