Zesty’s Settles In To New Home

November 5, 2009

CHELMSFORD — “That’s the nicest pizza place I’ve ever been in.”

An appreciative customer uttered that remark to a friend, as he got into his truck last week, his Zesty’s sub in hand.

One glance at the new Zesty’s Pizza, located on Fletcher Street in the Village Square Plaza, gives credence to his compliment.

The pizzeria, former home of Infusions Bistro and Americana Cafe before that, features hardwood floors, deep gold walls, a small bar and comfortable oak tables and booths that seat about 70.

There’s a bright, airy feel to the place that was lacking in the old Zesty’s, located for many years on Boston Road near Marshalls and Stop & Shop.

“My father is fanatical about cleanliness and it was getting hard to keep the old place clean,” said Ted Rokas Jr., who runs the popular spot with his dad, Ted Sr.

Zesty’s is a longtime Chelmsford tradition, founded in 1981, when the Rokas family bought the Zesty’s name and set about making memorable pizza, subs and salads.

The pizzas are so distinctive that Chelmsford native Lance Wilder, an artist on The Simpsons, got Zesty’s in a few scenes. Today, it’s memorialized in background shots on the show.

“It’s been great advertisement for us,” said Rokas, who commissioned a mural with images of Homer Simpson standing in front of Zesty’s, pizza dribbling down his chin.

The Rokases pride themselves on superior pizza and service. The menu offers several dozen pizzas, from the traditional sauce and cheese and pepperoni to gourmet varieties like fried or grilled chicken teriyaki and fried or grilled buffalo chicken ($6.25-$14.50). Syrian pizza, for the dieting set, is a lower-carb version made on pita bread ($5.25-$7.99).

Calzones ($7.99-$14.99) cater to veggie and meat lovers and also come with chicken parm, steak and cheese, meatball and sausage.

Three dozen subs ($5-$12.99) feature cold cuts, tuna, chicken, steak and burgers. There’s pasta, plus dinner plates, like haddock, steak tips and buffalo wings or fingers ($5.50-$10.50) and a children’s menu with hot dog, hamburger, ziti and chicken fingers ($4.25-$4.50).

The new menu features gelato in several varieties and sizes ($2.75-$16.99) and a beer and wine license.

Zesty’s, 14 Fletcher St., Suite 3, Chelmsford is open Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 9p.m. and Sunday, noon to 8 p.m. Free delivery in a three-mile area. (978) 256-8863.

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