Slices, a new pizzeria, opens in south Denver, complete with a drive-thru

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Slices, a pizza joint that opened in early December at 7155 East Hampden, may be the city's first pizza emporium that offers America's favorite food by the slice and whole pie, plus takeout, drive-thru service and frozen slices -- and according to owner and dough stretcher, Steve Kranich, that's just the beginning. "It's sort of like a first date. We'll know a lot more about what we're doing on the ninth date, but I can tell you that beginning early next year, we'll have some very interesting things to talk about," says Kranich, who will admit that the store's ovens, barricaded behind a wall, are "very cool technology."

The contemporary space, scattered with a few tables, two sensibly sized TVs and wired pizza racks propped with thin-crusted pies topped with everything from pepperoni and sausage to clams and shrimp, was doing good trade over the weekend with first-timers and repeat customers doling out high praise. "We're doing fresh, gourmet slices that are really cheap, and so far, people seem to love our product," says Kranich, whose menu also hustles gluten-free personal-size pizzas, a trio of salads and drinks -- none of which are alcoholic or come from a fountain.

Fresh slices, which ring in at $2 for cheese, and $2.25 with toppings (whole 18-inch pies are between $14 and $15.75), are also sold individually for a measly buck from the restaurant's freezer case. "It definitely cuts down on waste, which is important to us, and people really seem to like that we're offering that option," says Kranich, who also sells his dough, red sauce, cheese and toppings to go.

Kranich is still fiddling with hours and future plans for the drive-thru, but since opening on December 1, he's been tossing pizzas throughout the lunch and dinner hours. "We haven't missed a day so far, but I think we'll have a better idea of our set hours within the next several weeks, once we find out what people want," he notes.

To learn more, call 303-758-0940.

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