Wednesday, November 6, 2013 , Updated 9:45 a.m., February 18, 2014
UPDATED: Pizza company that delivers beer in Fort Worth temporarily closed
Owner Richie Whitt said he is negotiating with prospective new owners.
FORT WORTH Who’s going to make the next beer run?
It can be a perturbing, if inevitable, question among adults during sports game days and pre-parties. If only the refrigerator could restock itself.
Richie Whitt, former radio host on 105.3 The Fan, has an answer for the residents of north Fort Worth as well as parts of Keller, Haltom City and North Richland Hills. Two weeks ago, his new restaurant, Pizza Buzz, became the second in Dallas-Fort Worth to bring dinner along with a case of beer right to a residential doorstep.
[UPDATE: Pizza Buzz "temporarily closed" on February 17, according to Whitt, who added that he is negotiating a sale with prospective new owners. No word yet on when the pizza shop will reopen.]
“We’re no different, really, than an off-premise 7-Eleven,” Whitt said by phone, “but we have the ability and license to deliver beer.”
From a consumer standpoint, it’s simple: Order a pizza, wings or a salad and choose from a six-pack, 12-pack or case (24 beers). Pizza Buzz sells domestic beers like Budweiser, Shiner, Coors Light and Michelob Ultra as well as premiums such as Dos XX and Corona. The shop also sells Smirnoff Ice and Mike’s Hard Lemonade in packs of six and 12.
The shop will deliver within a five-mile radius of its location at 5418 Basswood Boulevard.
Pizza Buzz does not deliver single beers; the minimum per order is a six-pack. Conversely, Whitt said there is not a cap on the amount of booze per order as long as it is delivered with food, per Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission rules. And he’s even developed a special for those with a hankering for sugar called The Buzzer, which includes three cinnamon rolls and a case of beer for $36.99.
Beer prices here are slightly higher than grocery store or gas station prices, at $10 for six domestic beers and $19 for 12. Premium beers run $12 per six-pack and $23 per 12-pack, while wine coolers cost $13 and $25 for a six- and 12-pack, respectively. There is a flat $1.50 delivery fee per order.
There’s no doubt this business model has a built in “genius” factor, but we know you’re wondering how this is possible. Pizza Buzz attains a BQ permit from TABC, which allows it to deliver beer and wine; however, the establishment may not serve alcohol for consumption on its premises, according to TABC spokeswoman Carolyn Beck. (There is not dine-in seating at Pizza Buzz.)
Whitt described the process to become licensed as “difficult but not impossible.”
“We had to jump through a lot of hoops, clear a bunch of legal hurdles, pay for multiple layers of insurance and be buttoned-up on an endless string of compliance with the TABC and other entities in order to launch this business,” he said.
[UPDATE: Though Pizza Buzz exists in Fort Worth, Dallasites, too, have one option:
Rocco's Pizza & Pasta in Uptown Dallas delivers six-packs or bottles of wine with a food purchase. There is no minimum or maximum per order. The restaurant delivers within Uptown, parts of Highland Park, downtown and the Medical District. The restaurant attains a BG permit, so it also serves alcohol on premise.]
There are also several other retail stores that will do so. Sigel's (Dallas and Addison locations) and Pogo’s Wine and Fine Spirits in Dallas will deliver to residences by way of a BF permit and a local cartage permit. Sigel’s requires a $50 minimum purchase, while Pogo’s attaches a $10 delivery fee with no minimum required. Lucky Liquor also has a partnership with delivery service Scooter Boogie to distribute alcohol. Scooter Boogie will not deliver alcohol from other retailers -- just Lucky Liquor.
So tell us: Would you use Pizza Buzz?