We Believe THAT Pizza is an Art Form.
And our difference is in our vision.
Like any artistic endeavor, it starts with having vision. Anyone can make a dough and slather it in sauce and cheese. We like to think we have a point of view about what makes a slice not just good, but damn good.
We prefer an old world, authentic pie. This means we’re cooking our pizza in old-school, deck ovens at a minimum at 550 degrees. The dough sits directly on the stone – there are no pizza screens used in our kitchens! The result is a crust with a bread-like, chewy texture. Perfectly puffy. The dough is stretched thin enough to be golden and crispy, but never so thin it turns into a cracker texture. It’s foldable, lightly charred, and a touch salty.
A great crust is a must, but the toppings are where we get to be inventive. We like to have the classics, but our rotating menu can test the limits of what you might expect on a pizza. We don’t believe in style over substance though. Quality, carefully sourced ingredients are what elevate any good recipe. So we purchase our staple ingredients from the places that make the best: all-natural cheese from Wisconsin, fresh-packed tomato sauce from California, and extra virgin olive oil and parmigiano-reggiano from Italy. Our sauces and dressings are always made in house and we even filter our water to have better control over the quality of our dough.
There are no shortcuts around here. This is our art, and we’re damn proud.
Meet The Man Behind the Vision, Nuri.
He runs the place and, looking back, some might say it was his destiny.
At 16 Nuri owned his own company AND worked at a restaurant. He knew that one day he wanted to open his own restaurant so he stuck around to learn the ropes. Working as everything from a line cook, to manager, to pizza chef, Nuri was prepared when destiny called and he opened his first pizzeria – in a gas station.
It was a risky move, but it paid off. Where two other restaurant owners had failed, Nuri kicked butt. His 400 square foot gas station pizza emporium surprised, delighted, and shocked his customers. They weren’t expecting quality, but after all his years of experience that’s all Nuri knew. Realizing he had something special, Nuri took his show on the road and bought 4 more closed or failing restaurants and let his top notch pizza turn them around. Pretty soon, he sold his wildly successful restaurants and did what any sensible person would do – threw out his recipe and started from scratch.
Nuri traveled the world, visiting over 200 of the best pizza places in New York, New Jersey, and Italy to guarantee his pizza was authentically great. Still, after months of research, Nuri knew his taste buds were biased in his favor and that the only way to guarantee quality (which, um, is pretty important) was to test his new recipe out on 100 of the toughest pizza pizza critics he could find – New Yorkers. Because if you can please them, you can please anyone.
After rave reviews from his 100 pizza snobs, Wiseguy opened in 2012…to rave reviews from The Washington Post, The Washingtonian, and most everyone on his Yelp page. It has since won best pizza slice by Washington City Paper readers several years running (2016, 2017, 2018, 2019). Today, Wiseguy has 4 locations in the DC area and Nuri (obviously) has plans for many more. Now, when destiny calls Nuri says, “Please, call back later. We’re very busy.”
Destiny or not, Nuri is forever grateful to the Washington community for supporting him, and can’t wait to bring them more great food.