* This post is part FIVE of a series on ten restaurants worth checking out in Knoxville, Tennessee.
Every Top 10 restaurant list needs a pizza place. And although Knoxville isn’t known for making pizza pies or any Italian food for that matter, there is one pizzeria worth frequenting. Located in Western Plaza, Hard Knox Pizzeria will knock you out. Instead of trying to be all things to all people, Hard Knox is focused on their craft of delivering hot and fresh pizza from their classic wood-burning oven.
And the menu reflects that; they have pizza, flatbread and calzones. And if you’re freakin’ lost, they have a salad. That’s it.
For lovers of white pies, I highly recommend the D’Amato pie with loads of mushrooms and some nice dollops of ricotta. Old school red sauce traditionalists should check out the Bonecrusher pizza with its “real deal” Italian sausage and a nice, sweet-meets-heat combination of their divine tomato sauce and crushed red pepper.
Hard Knox is scaled back dining with stools and a few tables. I usually grab a pie to go and take it just down the street to Bearden Beer Market for some beers and revelry. Remember with a 750-degree oven, your pizza cooks in minutes and there’s not much else that beats the smell of all those fresh cheesy, saucy, crusty pies popping out of the oven, one after the other.