Tony C's brings family recipes, Brooklyn beer scene to Round Rock

Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden is a fusion of Tony C's coal-fired pizza and Italian classics paired with inspirations from Brooklyn's beer scene. (Courtesy Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden)
Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden is a fusion of Tony C's coal-fired pizza and Italian classics paired with inspirations from Brooklyn's beer scene. (Courtesy Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden)

Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden is a fusion of Tony C's coal-fired pizza and Italian classics paired with inspirations from Brooklyn's beer scene. (Courtesy Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden)

Image description
Some recipes used at Tony C's have been in founder Tony Ciola's family for more than 70 years. (Courtesy Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden)
Image description
Straying from traditionals like cheese and pepperoni, Tony C's serves specialty pies such as eggplant, prosciutto and goat cheese, and the Truffle Shuffle. (Courtesy Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden)
Image description
Tony C's menu features a combination of specialty pizzas and made-to-order combinations, all utilizing the restaurant's signature coal-fire cooking format. (Courtesy Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden)
For Tony C's founders Tony Ciola and Creed Ford IV, the restaurant industry is a family affair.

The Ciola family opened its first restaurant in Virginia Beach in 1949, before Ciola launched the original Tony C's in Bee Cave in 2009. Sixty years separated, some of his family's signature Italian recipes will find their way onto customers' plates when the franchise opens its first Round Rock location Sept. 24.

"My original dreams and hopes were to go play major league baseball, but I injured my shoulder in college so that didn't work out too well," Ciola said. "When I couldn't play baseball anymore, it just seemed like the natural thing to do."

Ford's parents met working in restaurants while his father attended graduate school at Texas A&M. His father held a manager position at the original Chili's in Dallas, working his way through the ranks and retiring as chief operating officer of Chili's parent company, Brinker International Inc., in the late 1990s.

"I was raised in a Chili's booth," Ford said. "And so growing up, I always knew I wanted to get into the business."


Round Rock's Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden features a new approach for the business, inspired by the Brooklyn beer scene. In researching concepts for the Round Rock location, Ciola and Ford said it is not always the cost or fanciness of a restaurant that makes it memorable; rather, it is the sense of comfort and familiarity found within its four walls.

"You'll go to the nicest restaurants in the world and have a good time, but then there's always a few places that draw you back," Ciola said. "These beer gardens—you can sit there for four hours, and you just lose track of time."

Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden's menu will include more than 20 Texas craft beers on draft, along with coal-fired pizza and Italian classics. Ciola said his benchmark for determining a quality Italian meal comes down to the basics.

"If you don't screw up the meatballs, Caesar salad or cheese pizza, you're going to be doing okay," he said, laughing.

Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden

3800 E. Palm Valley Blvd., Ste. 140, Round Rock | 512-595-7050 | www.tonycsbeergarden.com


MOST RECENT

US Attorney General Merrick Garland and US Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta announced the lawsuit against Texas on Dec. 6. (Screenshot courtesy of Department of Justice)
U.S. Dept. of Justice lawsuit alleges Texas' redistricting maps discriminate against voters of color

The suit alleges that the Texas Legislature redrew the maps to reduce voters of colors' influence on elections.

The 6.5-mile project will be an important connection for the pedestrian, bicycle and transit networks, according to city officials. (Courtesy Austin Public Works)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: City of Austin begins design of urban trail on abandoned rail corridor; 12 things to do in and around New Braunfels this holiday season and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Dec. 6.

Consuelo Mendez Middle School has consistently received poor ratings from the Texas Education Agency. (Community Impact Newspaper)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: State could take over AISD school board if poorly-rated campus does not improve; new furniture store to open in McKinney and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Dec. 3.

Derrick Chubbs is leaving Austin for a food bank in Florida. (Courtsey Central Texas Food Bank)
Central Texas Food Bank CEO Derrick Chubbs steps down

Derrick Chubbs is leaving Austin for a food bank in Florida.

The school board will consider whether to call a special election to fill the vacancy or make an appointment. (Zara Flores/Community Impact Newspaper)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: Hays CISD to hold special meeting on resignation of board member; Montgomery approves plan for downtown and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Dec. 2.

Tomball City Council approved a development agreement with Lovett Industrial for 240 acres at Hwy. 249, Rocky Road Nov. 29. (Anna Lotz/Community Impact Newspaper)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: Tomball City Council approves development of 240 acres at Hwy. 249, Rocky Road; JLB Eatery coming soon to Katy and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Dec. 1.

Crust Pizza Co. is opening soon in Montgomery and Willis. (Courtesy Crust Pizza Co.)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: 5 businesses coming to McKinney; Crust Pizza Co. to open two locations in Montgomery, Willis and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Nov. 30.

I Live Here I Give Here encourages individuals to donate to nonprofit organizations in their community. (Courtesy I Live Here I Give Here)
I Live Here I Give Here encourages Austinites to donate to local organizations Nov. 30

The nonprofit is encouraging the community to donate for Giving Tuesday on Nov. 30.

The median home price in the Round Rock, Pflugerville and Hutto area has risen considerably since last October. (Brian Rash/Community Impact Newspaper)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: Home sales, costs in Round Rock, Pflugerville and Hutto remain hotter than Greater Austin; Halal Guys opens in Pearland and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Nov. 29.

Commissioners on Nov. 22 voted to approve a density change to preliminary plans for The Preserve, a neighborhood that city documents said could include 565 single-family homes at the northeast corner of Teel and Panther Creek Parkways. (Courtesy city of Frisco)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: Neighborhood near PGA Frisco could see larger lots; ERCOT says Texas power grid ready for expected winter demand and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Nov. 24.