Pizza Inn re-opening met with brisk business…

Published 9:31 pm Monday, January 3, 2022

BY IVAN SANDERS
STAR STAFF
After much anticipation,  Pizza Inn returned to Elizabethton as owners began serving customers on Dec. 30, 2021.
Dorrance and Dion Firooznia are operating the franchise location in Elizabethton. Hailing from North Carolina, the franchisees already own one restaurant there and were asked if they had an interest in opening the Elizabethton location.
“Pizza Inn asked us if we had an interest in re-opening the Elizabethton location,” said Dorrance Firooznia. “There was no hesitation in giving them the answer of yes. We are in the process of opening a second location in Asheboro, N.C., which will open in the spring of 2022.
“We are now open at the drive-thru from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.  The goal is to open the dining room later this month. Having a full staff will determine when our dining room opens.  We want to make sure our guests have a great in-person dining experience.”
Firooznia said Pizza Inn has been fortunate to rehire some of the former employees who worked at the location prior to its closing. As many as 65 employees could be hired at the restaurant.
The restaurant returns with many of the same menu items that locals came to love with its salad, pizza bar, and southern sweet tea. A couple of notable additions will be the switch to 100% real Mozzarella cheese and a new Pineapple Upside Down Pizzert.
Local churches and school sports programs will be excited to know that fundraising opportunities will also be returning according to Firooznia.
“We are very excited to be part of this wonderful community,” Firooznia said. ” We are so grateful for the excitement we have seen once the news was out about the re-opening of the Pizza Inn.  We look forward to being a part of Elizabethton for many years.”
Former customers reacted to the re-opening of the Pizza Inn by way of a Facebook question posted by the Star and some of the responses are as follows:
  • “When our daughters Kathryn, age 6, and Emma, age 4, saw the Pizza Inn sign back up they both shouted Yippee in the car! We love Pizza Inn and cannot wait for it open again” – Joseph Taylor.
  • “We love having Pizza Inn come back to Elizabethton. We drive all the way from Gate City, VA to eat there” – Tina Michelle.
  • “So glad that Pizza Inn is coming back to Elizabethton. Over the years it has been a family favorite, as a child I remember going there with my parents and grandparents, I have taken my daughter and grandson there too. I know my 5-year-old grandson is excited to have Pizza Inn back and we are excited to take him to eat there again.”- Rhonda Cox McNeal.
  • “So many great memories of times spent with good friends and family at Pizza Inn. So glad we are going to be able to continue making more memories there” – Kristy Minton.
  • “It’s my favorite pizza joint in town. I’m super stoked it’s coming back.” – Mib Hughes.
  • “My kids ask me every Sunday if it is open yet. It was their favorite place to eat and they can’t wait. We’re all very excited for its return.” – Craig Layfield.
  • “They were so good to my Dad and Mom. They ate there every Wednesday. They are in Heaven now. Dillard and Beulah Street would be your first customers if they were here.” – Charlotte Smith.
  • “Bryson is counting down the days until he can get a breakfast pizza! He loves the bacon breakfast pizza.” – Misty Lloyd.
  • “We have missed having a family gathering place with good food. I hope it comes back and is the same as before. We have family from Fayetteville that think it is/was the BEST Pizza Inn they have ever eaten at.” – Aleta Morgan.
“It makes my heart happy that the people of  Elizabethton have responded the way they have,” said Firooznia. “I have never been associated with something like this and the people are just loving us. Thank you for your support and your patience as we work hard to provide you with the great pizza you love.”
The drive-through hours are 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Sunday. Phone in orders can be made by calling 423-542-6800.

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