Even More Pizza Coming to Midtown: Music City Pizza at 12th & Porter

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I'm generally of the opinion that there is no such thing as too many options when it comes to pizza. I grew up in the pre-Dominos era when Shakey's, Carmen's, Fletcher's and Obie's were pretty much it for most Nashvillians. There was a Sir Pizza here and there, but I always thought that they used bacon bits instead of pepperoni. After the first (dozen) Domino's opened in town, suddenly there was a boom of chains and local options like Michaelangelo's, DaVinci's and several other Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

But I can't remember anything like the current pizza boom going on now in the Midtown neighborhood. Starting at the original stalwart Pizza Perfect across from Vanderbilt on 21st Avenue, here's the list of a half-dozen Midtown pizza joints that I can think of off the top of my head that we have covered here on Bites in the past few years:

Mellow Mushroom
Bella Napoli
DeSano Pizza Bakery
Soulshine Pizza Factory
Two Boots

(And not that far from Midtown are Porta Via Italian Kitchen, Five Points Pizza and two chef-driven dining spots that feature wood-fired pizza ovens — City House and Lockeland Table.)

Even with the closing of Pie in the Sky around the corner from Soulshine and Two Boots, there are a whole lot of new pizza choices for Midtown diners. But Keith Hayman, the owner of 12th & Porter, isn't scared about oversaturation. He has announced plans to open Music City Pizza in the lounge side of the 12th & Porter bar and music club before the summer is over.

What's unique about MCP that might raise it above all the competition? Hayman thinks the answer is music. His pies will be themed after and even created by local musicians. (a change from all the pizzas I've had delivered by Nashville musicians ...) According to a Scoutmob announcement of the new venture, “We want to support local musicians like crazy,” he said. “We’re calling our pizzas 'records,' and since everyone in town is looking for a record deal, we’re giving out some 'record deals' of our own."

Meaning? "Basically, we’re going to be partnering with up-and-coming bands for three months," said Keith. "We’ll work with them to design a pizza, and for every pizza that gets sold under their name, we’ll give them a dollar. It’s our way of profit-sharing with bands.”

Hmm ... sounds intriguing at the very least. Hayman has invested in dressing up the outside of the venerable club with a new mural and has installed a huge pizza oven that is so large that they had to take out a wall to get it in the building. Plans include a full bar with lots of music-related beer and spirits brands, think Sammy Hagar's tequila or Dave Matthews' wine.

Like I said at the beginning, more is more when it comes to pizza options, so bring on MCP. We'll keep you posted on the opening date as it approaches, but if you get there before we do, let us know what you think.

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