Plenty of space to eat-in at this new E. Passyunk restaurant

Davide Lubrano (left), Ciro Lubrano (middle), Vinny Gallagher (right) in both images: Photo by Mike Prince
Davide Lubrano (left), Ciro Lubrano (middle), Vinny Gallagher (right). Photo by Mike Prince

When it comes to pizza, Davide Lubrano and Vinny Gallagher are proving the East Coast and West Coast can come together to form one tasty treat.

Just three years ago, the two co-owners of Pizzata Pizzeria in Rittenhouse Square took the neighborhood by storm with its flavorful New York-style pizza shop at 24 S. 22nd St. Now they are expanding to one of South Philly’s food-friendliest neighborhoods with a new creation in East Passyunk. 

Pizzata Pizzeria & Birreria will open at 1700 E. Passyunk Ave. at the former LaScala’s Birra location in late January.

But unlike its Rittenhouse sister restaurant, the new location in South Philly will have plenty of seating both indoors and outdoors. The original Pizzata Pizzeria opened in October 2020 and has operated with just a handful of seats. East Passyunk brings a new challenging chapter in pizza-producing philosophy that the owners are up for. 

“We’ve had this plan in the works for a few months now, and while it’s been a lot of work, we are so excited to have a proper restaurant with so much space to work with, and serve more than a few people at a time, which is very important to us,” said Lubrano.

Lubrano is a New York City native who was trained at both the Roman Pizza Academy and Pizza Master Italian Academy while living the life of a third-generation pizzaiolo from Naples, Italy since he was 4 years old. Gallagher is a self-taught, San Francisco natural-leaven dough freak who won the 2019 USA Caputo Cup, and was featured in the New York Times and Pizza Today. Their teamwork resulted in a number of awards and accolades, and a Naples, Florida location.

Pizzata translates to “pizza party” in Italian, and symbolizes how the two owners and friends think pizza should be eaten – with a group of your favorite people.

“Having family involved helped with the decision and the process, and we’re excited to bring the East Passyunk neighborhood a style and quality of pizza that it has been missing,” Lubrano said.”

The East Passyunk location will serve 58 seats in the downstairs dining room, another 14 at the bar and roughly 78 more seats for outdoor dining. There is also a kid-friendly upstairs dining room available for private events, pizza parties, themed nights, pizza-making classes and more.

And while the focus is on pizza, the menu goes well beyond a traditional pie. An expansive menu features more than a dozen starters, a selection of salads, a wide variety of pasta dishes and Italian classics, an assortment of sandwiches (served with french fries), a handful of strombolis, a kid’s menu and a massive pizza menu featuring naturally leavened 12-inch and 16-inch sourdough pies.

A full bar will pour eight beers on tap, and an additional 60 flavors can be had by can or bottle. Wine and cocktails will also be available. 

“We are going to be a restaurant for everyone, not just pizza lovers,” said Gallagher. “We’re going to be a place where friends can come in for some drinks and dinner, but we’re also going to be a perfect place for the entire family, where we offer a kid’s menu and themed nights that kids and parents will both love.”

The restaurant will be open seven days a week, with varying hours of operation. A happy hour will take place Monday through Friday from 4-6 p.m. For full hours and menu options, visit

To keep quality control of the dough, all pizza and bread dough will be made fresh daily at Pizzata Pizzeria in Rittenhouse and transferred to East Passyunk. The Rittenhouse location promises to continue to thrive alongside its new expansion in South Philly

“We love our Rittenhouse location and our customers in that neighborhood, and we always will,” Gallagher said. “But it’s very exciting for us to be able to stretch our legs and create a space this big, where we can showcase more than just pizza and sandwiches.”