A Dopo Sourdough Pizza
Growin’ It: A Dopo Sourdough Pizza
As Knoxville’s restaurant scene has evolved, restaurants like A Dopo Sourdough Pizza have been a welcome addition to our local foodscape. Owners Brian and Jessica Strutz are students of Italian culture, pizza, and hospitality.
Brian and Jessica first met as high schoolers working at a restaurant here in Knoxville. Brian admittedly had a crush on Jessica back when they worked together, but it would be years later before they reconnected.
Jessica went to school to study music and then became a musical theater teacher at Clinton High School. Brian’s work history was in both finance and in the food world. He worked at Blackberry Farm and later “moonlighted” as a caterer for events while he was working in the finance world.
In preparing to open their business, Brian and Jessica were dedicated in their study of what it would take to open a successful pizza restaurant. While creating the business model, Brian would approach businessman he respected and ask them to “poke holes” in it in order to better refine their plan.
Some examples of their research includes Brian and Jessica living in Italy, Brian’s travel to Phoenix to shadow a similar restaurant to A Dopo, researching and sourcing the proper oven, finding like-minded investors, and meticulously curating a positive dining experience.
To learn more about their response to COVID-19, visit our Facebook page to see Andy and Brian’s conversation on how they have adapted their business model.