The Downtown dining renaissance of the past five years has been pretty easy to read. Restaurants that have rocketed to popularity right out of the gate continue to succeed; those that struggled early are gone or still fighting. (Glutton, which closed less than three weeks ago, served some of Downtown’s best eats and will be missed. If you’re looking for other deliciousness that deserves attention, check out the Smashed Pig and Zydeco Po-Boys.)
Evel Pie feels and tastes like one of those quick winners. Radio City Pizzeria was starting to catch on in this same Fremont East space when it was sold in the summer of 2015, and replacement fondue joint F. Pigalle didn’t last long. Cheap pizza and drinks—you can get a slice of cheese with a beer for $5 and, during 2-6 p.m. happy hour, a whole pie and pitcher for $20—is a better fit, but only if the pizza’s tasty. Evel’s is, built on a thin and crispy New York-style crust without a lot of fuss. Add a bunch of familiar toppings if you like, but this is simple pie that’s better without over-adornment. Pepperoni cups and chars as it should, a not-too-garlicky ricotta white pie stands out and a Hawaiian slice excels by adding jalapeño, which brings spicy to the sweet, seasoned pineapple. General manager Vincent Rotolo is also expected to add a legit gluten-free pizza to the mix soon.
With a loud punk-rock attitude, ’70s style and abundant Evel Knievel memorabilia, the theme is overpowering, but not in a Vegas makeover way—it feels like it’s been here all along. The cozy back patio will be converted into a junkyard-themed bar area, and the quick-serve window fronting Fremont should be fully operational soon. It’s open late for the bar-hopping crowd, which sounds like a no-brainer but hasn’t been for many restaurants in the area, which could partially explain why some have struggled. This joint should be just fine.
Evel Pie 508 Fremont St., 702-840-6460. Sunday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-2 a.m.; Friday & Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 a.m.