City Paper is not for tourists
Beloved Mount Pleasant eatery Radius Pizza will make its comeback next week under the new ownership of husband-wife team Matt and Lenka Culbertson.
The kitchen will be run by former Equinox chef de cuisine and Wilson Tavern chef Chris Kenworthy. Matt Culbertson was bar manager at Wilson Tavern alongside Kenworthy, and the two previously worked together at Cowboy Cafe. The new menu will have bigger, family-style portions at what the Culbertsons say will be more affordable prices.
Kenworthy, who started his culinary career working in pizzerias, will stay true to Radius’ original base pizza recipe. Among the ten pie options ($19-22 for a large): a pesto pizza with ricotta, feta, and cauliflower; a truffle, shitake, and enoki mushroom pizza; and a meat pizza with pepperoni, prosciutto, pepperoncini, and sopressata. There will also be gluten-free and vegan options.
The new menu will also have a kids menu, salads, appetizers, and an expanded pasta selection. Look for gnocchi with gorgonzola cream, pear ($14); linguini with white wine, littleneck clams, and cauliflower ($18); and lasagna made with crepes and beef ($12). Once they get rolling, there will be other daily specials with meat, fish, and stuffed pastas. Kenworthy will be making everything in-house—pickles, sauces, stocks, pastas, etc. In fact, he’d like to jar and sell his pickles and hot sauce down the line.
The liquor license transfer is still in the works, but Radius Pizza expects to have it by the first or second week of November. Matt Culbertson has created a classic cocktail list that will include a rye drink named Ward 1, a pickled martini with Kenworthy’s house made pickle juice, and a daily fresh juice punch. He’ll also offer a different infused bourbon each week as well as beers and wines.
As for that famous $5 pint and slice deal? The Culbertsons say it didn’t make economic sense to offer the happy hour every day, but they will do it once a week for a little bit more. “The price of meat and cheese have gone up considerably, so obviously you have to adjust to the economy,” Matt Culbertson says. Don’t freak out yet. There will be plenty of other daily deals including half-off wine and pasta nights as well as a carry-out special. Happy hour will run from 5-7 p.m. on weekdays.
The Culbertsons have made minimal changes to the space, but they have added a mural along one wall with a map of Mount Pleasant. There are also light fixtures made with mason jars and pasta strainers.
“We live in this neighborhood; we’re raising our daughter in this neighborhood,” Lenka Culbertson says. “And we just want to fit in and make it all about the neighborhood.”
Kitchen manager Kelly Wills, owners Matt and Lenka Culbertson, and chef Chris Kenworthy
Photos by Jessica Sidman