KENNEWICK — Eight months after opening Fat Olives pizzeria restaurant in Richland, owners Steve and Lisa Nolan opened a second Friday in Kennewick.
The newest restaurant is in the former Country Gentleman restaurant at the corner of Vista Way and Highway 395 in Kennewick.
Their Richland restaurant is on Williams Boulevard and they also own one in Homer, Alaska.
"We bought the (Kennewick) building in May and began remodeling seriously in August," said Lisa Nolan. "We literally gutted it. We changed the layout, moved the bathrooms, redid the kitchen. It's totally updated."
The main dining room will seat 75, and there is a special events room too that has movable walls to accommodate as few as 20, or another 75 diners.
"We can expand and shrink that area as people want and still maintain a comfortable ambiance. We're very excited to have that ability now," she said.
They also have expanded the menu at both Tri-City locations to include a gluten-free pizza crust and desserts too.
"You can have that option in any of our favorite (pizzas) or go the kitchen sink route and build your own. We've really worked hard to perfect the gluten-free crust and we have it down pat. I'm really pleased with it," she said.
Their pizzas feature a crispy Neapolitan-style crust, and each is hand-tossed and hand-stretched. Pizzas are available all day, plus there is a dinner menu that features lamb shank and rib eye steaks at Kennewick, flat iron steaks in Richland.
"Plus we have a new vegetarian entree too," Lisa Nolan said.
The two restaurants also feature two-handed sandwiches.
"We call them than because you need two hands to hold them. The portions at our restaurants are substantial. If you go away hungry, it's your fault," she said.
They offer the option of eating in or take out at both sites, and there are three pizzas featured by the slice every day, all day. The slices, eight per pizza, come from Fat Olives' signature 28-inch pizza.
"You can buy a whole 28-inch but you have to take it home. It won't fit on our tables," she said.
Sometimes it won't fit into cars, either. Lisa Nolan recalled a woman recently bought one of their monster pizzas and couldn't get it into her vehicle, similar in size to a Smart Car.
"We had to cut it and put it in smaller boxes for her," she said.
Pizzas range from $18 to $23, more for the 28-inch depending on the toppings you choose. Dinners go from $15 to $22. They have soft drinks, draft beers and a selection of wines, many from Walla Walla and Red Mountain wineries.
Paintings and prints by Tri-City artist Consuelo Soto Murphy, all for sale, are hanging on the walls of the Kennewick restaurant and will soon be hanging in the Richland Fat Olives too.
The Nolans hired 32 people for the new restaurant and employ 60 between the two Tri-City sites.
The Kennewick restaurant is open from 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., daily. Reservations aren't accepted except for the special events room at the Kennewick pizzeria.