The steadily growing Rise & Shine Restaurant Group, which operates multiple locations of Breakfast Republic and Fig Tree Cafe and is working on launching North Park Breakfast Company and El Jardin in Liberty Station, is adding a new Italian eatery to its restaurant stable. Founder Johan Engman is taking over a former pet store adjacent to the Breakfast Republic on University Avenue for his next project called Pizza Republic, which is currently scheduled to open this December.
Specializing in a menu of Neapolitan-style pizzas along with housemade pastas and house-cured meats, its layout will include a wood-fired pizza oven shipped in from Italy and glassed-in stations that will give diners full view of its pasta-making and meat-curing processes. Among its beverage options will be local craft beer and four house wine varietals, served in wine bottles with custom labels designed to encourage guests to jot down a memory from their dining experience. In addition to a main dining room, the restaurant will also have a rooftop patio with views of its North Park neighborhood.
The 2,420-square-foot full-service restaurant will have the playful and eccentric decor that’s become the hallmark of Rise & Shine Restaurant Group’s other locations. Among the whimsical touches will be a wall-sized portrait of the late actor Sir John Vincent Hurt.