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Childhood friends open Nashville pizzeria, give back to old neighborhood

New restaurants and businesses are opening up daily in Nashville. Three childhood friends, who grew up together here in Music City, saw the city’s growth as a chance to open a new restaurant and give back to their old neighborhood.

Slim & Husky’s opens their doors at 10:30 a.m., but co-owner Derrick Moore says the line to get in stretches around the corner before the doors are even open.

“My heart just bursts with joy. It’s 10:15 a.m., we’ve got a line out the door already and we haven’t even opened the doors yet. It feels good. We just want to be a part of this street as much as possible and continue to develop and have a footprint in this community.”

The street he’s referring to is the revitalized Buchanan Street. The trio’s pizzeria, Slim & Husky’s, is a can’t miss restaurant spot.

Photo: WKRN

Moore, Emanuel Reed and Clinton Gray III started their gourmet pizza place in 2015, and Gray says they knew exactly what to call it.

“When we were kids, Derrick and I were husky kids, so our moms had to shop for us in the husky section. A lot of elastic pant liners, and Emanuel was a slim guy, so he didn’t really understand that. We got a kick out of that over the years.”

So Slim & Husky’s, a build your own gourmet pizza with plenty of healthy options was born.

“You’re not going to get your round pizza here. We have oblong shape. I wanted to do something a little different, so we kind of stepped outside the box from what you see traditionally here in Nashville,” Reed explained.

Slim & Husky makes their own dough, own sauces, and shred their own cheese. You can add premium toppings, but Gray says you won’t find the premium prices.

“We also have a very fair price. We feel like what we do attributes to everybody. It’s not just one demographic that can fall in love with our product, but it’s everybody in the community far and wide that can enjoy this.”

Gray explains the naming of some of their pizzas.

Photo: WKRN

“’Nothing but a V Thing’ is inspired by Snoop Doggy Dogg’s ‘Nuthin’ but a G Thang’ and it has our bean ragu made with local tomatoes, a mix of different beans and other veggies.

We have a lot of different colors and a lot of different flavors on our pizza and it also kind of represents who is coming to Slim and Husky’s. It’s like a big melting pot here, you know everybody is welcome.”

For the trio, it’s not just about offering a tasty option and great atmosphere for Nashvillians, it’s also about giving back to the community where they all grew up.

“The revitalization on this street is very important to us. All three of us are natives of Nashville. Now we feel like it’s our turn to play our part in our community and also bring some new trendy things to do in the area.”

The group also owns properties at 16th Avenue and Buchanan Street, and they plan to open up an urban event and art space in the future and also offer catering and to go services for Slim and Husky’s.

Courtesy of WKRN News 2

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