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16915 Birkdale Commons Pkwy Huntersville
Brixx Pizza is a local success story that is rapidly going national.
The owners have managed to expand the number of restaurants without sacrificing quality. In fact, a customer entering a Brixx location may be surprised to find it is a chain.
Each establishment is kept purposely small and quaint to endow the feel of a neighborhood restaurant. Entering the Birkdale location on a gloomy day, the entire restaurant is warmly lit like the hearth of a home. The wood burning oven glows, the air is heavy with fragrant aromas, and the space feels cozy and welcoming – just like a local pizza joint.
Brixx began in Dilworth on East Boulevard in 1998.
Eric Horsley, one of the founding partners, explains the concept.
“The other owners and I personally wanted to be able to enjoy a good beer or glass of wine and an excellent piece of pizza,” he said. “So we began the restaurant with this in mind.”
The pizza begins with homemade dough made fresh two to three times a day. The beer list consists of 24 craft beers on tap and there are 14 wines by the glass.
Brixx keeps a concise menu of fresh, innovative items, with everything is made to order.
Plus, the restaurant takes patrons who need gluten-free or vegan options into account when planning entrees. The gluten-free pizza dough is homemade, and it was tested over and over for premium taste.
“We’re pretty proud of that gluten-free dough,” Horsley said.
The crust is crisp and delicious, with no aftertaste common in some gluten-free dough.
The menu doesn’t stop at pizza.
The starters include a garden fresh bruschetta; jalapeño pimento cheese dip; and a hummus trio with wood-fired pita chips. The salads are large and fresh with selections as varied as Pesto Chicken and Arugula and Pear. The pastas are simple in preparation, relying on homemade sauces and extra fresh ingredients such as wood-roasted chicken or house-made meatballs to make them pop. The sandwiches are served on the thick, chewy, flavorful focaccia bread or customers can choose a wrap.
There are two seasonal menu changes per year. Items get rotated in and out and new entrees will appear. Plus Brixx runs specials every day. Often, the most popular specials become new menu items.
As the chain grows, the owners and corporate chef work hard to ensure consistent, amazing food.
The Birkdale store was the fourth to open and grew quickly due to the appeal to a large segment of the population. “At lunch, we get shoppers and families,” Horsley explained. “As the night wears on, we still get the families but as the evening wears on, it turns into more of an adult-orientated atmosphere.”
The restaurant is open until 1 a.m., so it is a popular place for a date or to meet up with friends.
Brixx works hard to be part of the community.
The restaurant conducts a 5K/10K run, dubbed Hit the Brixx Race, every year to benefit Kids Path Pediatric Care.
It offers Brixx Bucks for Education to raise money for a school, church or club. And it sponsors many sports teams.
“We really want to be part of the fabric of the community,” Horsley said. “We want to connect with our guests outside of the restaurant, because we really appreciate their loyalty.”
Brixx is a popular place with a devoted following. In fact, customers are often very effusive in their praise of the restaurant.
“People always tell me how much they love Brixx,” Horsley said. “And they are very specific about what they love.”