Altitude Pizza brings Sicilian style pies to Granby | SkyHiNews.com

Altitude Pizza brings Sicilian style pies to Granby

The owners of the new Altitude Pizza shop in Granby pose for a quick picture in front of the store early Sunday morning as they prepare for the start of a busy day.

If you ever meet folks who regularly visit or vacation in Grand County, you'll realize there are certain elements of our mountain communities outsiders take pretty seriously.

Front Range visitors to Middle Park have a penchant for asking locals what their favorite ski run is, or where to find the best locally brewed beers. Among the most serious questions many visitors pose to locals is, "where's the best pizza?"

It's a hotly contested issue, and one that creates conflicting opinions. But whatever your own personal preference Middle Park has a new establishment vying for the top honors. Altitude Pizza opened for business on March 15 at their storefront location on US Highway 40 on the far south end of Granby and just east of the highway.

Altitude Pizza is owned and operated by husband and wife team Paula Bolton-Stewart and Kayne Stewart. The Stewarts are Lakewood transplants and have spent more than two decades vacationing in and around the Granby area during summers before making the formal move to the high country last year.

"We have been coming up here going on 20 years now for summers," Paula said. "We finally said we are not going back."

Before moving to Grand County, the Stewarts operated their own restaurant and bar in Golden for many years. "We enjoyed that," said Kayne. "It is what we like to do. I had some experience with pizzas and we had some really good Italian sauce recipes from the restaurant and bar. We thought we would put those to use and try to fill a niche for pizza around here."

Altitude specializes in Sicilian-style pizza, though Kayne acknowledges the shop has its own unique take on the method. "It is our version of a Sicilian-style pizza," he said. "Sicilian-style pizza originally had the sauce on top. Our sauce doesn't go on very first, but it doesn't go on top either. We build them a little differently." Kayne pointed out Altitude's pizzas have a slightly thicker crust, in keeping with the Sicilian style, and the pie is cut into squares instead of wedges.

Paula pointed out Altitude uses high quality meats and other ingredients purchased from an Italian food importer/supplier based out of Denver. "Our pepperoni is uncured," she said. "We want to serve a high quality product at an affordable price. The good meats really are expensive, but it makes all the difference."

For Paula that difference shows up in the taste of Altitude's pies. "We are pretty big on flavor," she said. "Our sauce has a good kick to it. We have come up with what we think are good recipes. People seem to like it so far."

Along with pizzas, Altitude also offers Italian dinner options such as spaghetti and lasagna and hot sandwiches, such as the hot ham and cheese and the meatball and marinara. As the Stewarts get the shop up and running available sandwich and pasta options can vary depending on the day and time. The store is still working out some logistical issues, but once squared away the Stewarts expect to offer a full selection of dinner and sandwich options for customers.

Altitude Pizza also offers take-and-bake options for patrons.

"We think that will become a big part of our business," said Paula. "A lot of people told us how they will pick up a pizza but it will be soggy by the time they get it home."

So far business has been booming at Granby's newest pizzeria and the Stewarts are struggling to keep up. Right now Altitude is still looking to lock down a larger staff to help them with their work at the shop. "We just hired two drivers," said Kayne. "We are looking for both kitchen and front counter staff."

Altitude Pizza is located at 62543 US Highway 40 just slightly south of the Carquest auto parts business within the same building complex as the Comcast Service Center. Their business hours are Tuesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Altitude offers pizza delivery from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. within a three-mile radius of the shop, which basically includes the entirety of Granby proper. You can reach Altitude Pizza by calling 970-557-3155.