Under Construction: Coals Pizza (Updated)

Coals Pizza (website, instagram, twitter) has leased 114 Preble Street where they plan to open their first location outside of New York. They specialize in grilled pizza. You can see their full menu online.

A 2015 review in the New York Times sums up coals this way,

The atmosphere is as quirky and appealing as the food, with a Catskills-meets-Brooklyn vibe from mounted deer antlers and painted country scenes. Sit there long enough and you’ll become aware of the rhythmic sound of the pizza cutter, a guy who wields a huge half moon of a knife that he rocks across the pies as they come out, dividing them into three- or four-bite squares. It’s a kind of siren call — one that should be heeded by all pizza lovers.

Coals was founded in 2004 in the Bronx. Their first two locations are located in Bronxville and Port Chester. 114 Preble Street has not been used as a restaurant since 2014 since Portland & Rochester closed.

Back Story: Coals owner Billy Etzel was born and raised in NYC, but he’s been visiting Maine since age 3 and always felt connected to the state. Four years ago Etzel’s son began doing some family genealogical research. Etzel himself is adopted, and through the research online they discovered that his biological family was trying to get in contact with him. As it turns out his biological family is from Kittery, just 30 minutes away from where Etzel owns a cabin. It’s as a result of this connection to Maine to Etzel decided to open his latest branch of Coals Pizza here in Portland.

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