Five months ago, when Lopez brothers Andrew and Peter opened LoPiez pizza, a New York style pizza spot in downtown Davenport, they hoped it would be a success. The Great Davenport Flood of 2019 that came in April, pushed back the opening a few months but since they opened their doors five months ago, they have been reeling in the dough, literally, since then and are preparing for the holiday season with a few fun surprises for their customers. “We knew it was going to be busy, but we weren’t sure how busy it was going to be or how long people were going to be coming in,” explained owner Andrew Lopez. “We had our soft opening of friends and family two hours before and right when that happened people started trickling in, and by the time we opened which was like four or five, this whole place was packed and there was a line going out the back door.”

As most new owners know, there is always an initial interest in a new spot and then there may be a lull in business. LoPiez is still waiting for that to happen. “A lot of people say there is a honeymoon phase where people come and try it for a couple weeks and then it slows down, but it was like two to three months and it’s still going,” said Lopez. “It definitely exceeded our expectations for sure.”

Anybody that has stopped in to LoPiez knows that at any time you can pretty much see all the staff there, including Andrew and his brother Peter, working multiple positions to make sure the product and your experience is top notch. And Lopez credits that work ethic, way of life and even the business name and menu items to his family and Mexican heritage. “My dad is one of the hardest working people I know, and my grandpa is also one of the hardest working people I know as well. So that has a big deal to do with it,” said Lopez. “We wanted to call it LoPiez because we wanted to dedicate it to my father and my grandfather without making it Lopez pizza. The fact that we have the name in the title means a lot to me like being from a Mexican family. I really take pride in our last name and family because usually in the Mexican community everyone backs each other up.”

LoPiez learned firsthand about just how much the Quad City community backs each other up when the flood hit and almost shut down their business for good. And because of how much the community helped and supported them, LoPiez want to make sure they give back as much as they can. “Everyone just needs to be helping,” said Lopez. “I think nowadays we have a lot of young entrepreneurs and a lot of millennials that are starting new businesses. I think that’s starting to happen more just seeing businesses starting to work with each other, because it’s easier when the community works with each other. And I want to keep that going outside the Mexican community and push it forward into the community.”

As for the pizza itself, the brothers have also worked hard to tie in their Mexican background into the menu without being cliché. “Chavo’s Garden is named after my Grandpa,” said Lopez. “His nickname is Chavo and he’s always growing a garden even to this day he’s like ninety-two years old and he’s still out there in the summer. “The agave knots and the crust correlate with the margaritas we also provide. It’s not just Mexican ideas, its things that actually work. It’s not like gimmicky like burrito pizzas, we still like to put a little flair. I think the biggest thing is the margaritas that bring the Mexican flair in without overdoing it.”

With Thanksgiving just a few days away, the food friendly holiday kicks off the holiday season and LoPiez is ready for it all. “All the major holidays we are going to close just because we are a family-oriented establishment and we want all these guys (staff) to have some time and don’t want to overwork them during the holidays,” said Lopez. “So, we’ll be closed all major holidays but the Wednesday before Thanksgiving we’ll have drink specials and the Friday after we’ll have drink specials and we are going to make a Thanksgiving pizza with some mashed potatoes, turkey, cranberry and gravy, something like that. We might try to do that a few times a year, make a crazy pizza.”

And talking LoPiez 2020, Andrew says he just wants to keep it simple in the first year, enjoy the time there and offers advice to future business owners in the area. “I would say just believe in yourself and when it gets hard and when you think you can’t overcome a hurdle, just try so hard to jump over it because it gets hard then it gets easy then it gets hard. It’s never going to be a level playing field,” said Lopez. “Just keep your head down and keep working hard. If your business is something you truly believe in, then stick with it where you almost have to be obsessive with it. Because it you aren’t thinking about it all the time, then there is something you are going to be missing.”

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For more information or to order (and also gets some gift cards that make perfect Xmas gifts) visit, www.lopiezpizza.com

Photo credit: Andrew Lopez

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