By: Shelly Robinson | Category: Restaurants | Issue: March 2009
Owners Pam and Russ Whorton welcome you to Arris’ Pizza.
“Ekoghenia” is the Greek word for family, and it is said that once you share a meal with someone of Greek heritage, you become family. This is the kind of warm welcome you will find at Arris’ Pizza in Owasso. Owners Russ, Pam and Kaleb Whorton invite you to take a tasty tour of Greece without ever leaving Owasso.
Arris’ is named for Arris Pardalos, born near Mount Olympus, Greece in 1935. He immigrated to the United States and started his first pizza restaurant in Jefferson City, Missouri in 1961. Combining his homemade pizza recipe with a family-oriented environment proved to be a great success, and Arris’ Pizza now boasts five locations across Missouri in addition to the Owasso store. The pizzas are so popular they are even mailed to Arris’ fans all over the country.
When the Whortons opened their restaurant in March of 2007, it was the fulfillment of their goal to settle and put down roots. Having traveled across the country for years working in the telecommunications industry, Russ says that the family was ready to call some place home. They had also tasted every kind of pizza imaginable and thought the pizza served by Russ’s sister and brother-in-law at their Springfield, Missouri Arris’ Pizza was the best. With four successful restaurants in the family, Russ naturally leaned toward the business.
“I love all different kinds of pizza, but there is something special about Arris’. Our pizza is unique because of our fresh ingredients and attention to detail,” explains Russ. “The finished product can’t be found anywhere else.”
Brittany Ventris and Aly Sparkman provide service with a smile to OHS students (L to R) Cody Whitewater, Bryce Robinson, Brittany Robinson, Ethan Gazaway, Ben Puzan, John Fowler and Garrett Hack.
Arris’ dough is made fresh daily and provides a signature light, thin crust. A bit of homemade sauce and a layer of cheese and toppings makes for a great lunch or dinner. From the best ingredients comes the best food. Russ orders his cheese from Wisconsin. The spices are a proprietary blend provided directly from Arris Pardalos, and the sauce is still made straight from his decades-old recipe. Even the sausage and beef toppings are seasoned and mixed right at the store to provide the freshest taste.
The specialty pizzas at Arris’ have fun names such as Pandora, Artemis, Hercules and Zeus. The toppings are as varied as the mythical Greek characters they are named for and include artichoke hearts, sweet basil, feta cheese, gyro meat, pineapple, roasted garlic, roma tomatoes, spinach and walnuts.
Not in the mood for pizza? Check out the restaurant’s tasty appetizers, subs, soups or scrumptious desserts.
The Philly steaks are a customer favorite at Arris’, as are the gyros. Russ said he uses only the finest Kronos roast for his gyros and cooks it on the rotisserie for hours. “I shave it off the roast myself every morning from the rotisserie. It is absolutely delicious, and our customers really love the unique flavor.”
The Greek salad is the house specialty. With Romaine and iceberg lettuce, roma tomatoes, green peppers, sliced cucumbers, sweet red onions, Kalamata olives, freshly grated feta cheese and Greek dressing, it is sure to delight your taste buds. And the Macedonian baklava or New York style cheesecake topped with chocolate, caramel or strawberry sauce is sure to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Whether you are enjoying a break from work at the daily lunch buffet or a night out with the family, Arris’ will provide you with high-quality food at budget-friendly prices. “I put out the most popular specialty pizzas on the buffet, plus soups, salad, spaghetti and meat sauce, and on the Tuesday and Sunday buffet, we have linguini. I also usually make apple cobbler.”
With exposed brick, Grecian columns and murals painted on the walls, Arris’ is a relaxing place to visit. “It’s like a big family meal, only you don’t have to help clean up,” smiles Russ. Long-time employees Lynn Unrein and Lindsey Ming have been with Arris’ since its opening and are dedicated to excellent service.
Arris’ Pizza is located in the Tyann Plaza. Hours of operation are 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., with the lunch buffet served from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily. Tuesday evening dinner buffet is offered from 5 to 8:30, and catering and carryout is available on all menu items.