Jupiter Pizza & Waffles Co. general manager gets creative with the menu

 The Supernova is a pizza that features mozzarella, pepperoni, bacon, pineapple, mushrooms, garlic, jalapenos, basil, Sriracha sauce and ranch dressing.

The Supernova is a pizza that features mozzarella, pepperoni, bacon, pineapple, mushrooms, garlic, jalapenos, basil, Sriracha sauce and ranch dressing.

Image description
Jupiter Pizza & Waffles Co.
Image description
Jupiter Pizza & Waffles Co.
Image description
Jupiter Pizza & Waffles Co.
Image description
Jupiter Pizza & Waffles Co.
Image description
Jupiter Pizza & Waffles Co.
Embracing their reputation as unique restaurateurs, business partners and brothers-in-law Victor Litwinenko and Robert White opened Jupiter Pizza & Waffles Co. in Sugar Land Town Square on Aug. 1, 2013, serving hearty portions of comfort food with their own spin.

“Before [we opened Jupiter], we were known for fusion already,” Litwinenko said. “We wanted to do pizza only, but everybody expects something other than pizza from us. … The waffles idea was big at the moment.”

Litwinenko and White also own Guru Burgers & Crepes and Japaneiro’s, which combines Japanese and South American cuisine.

“Each one kind of runs itself,” Litwinenko said. “It’s like an individual unit. I like the way we have it set up because each one has a chef and a general manager, and they make all the decisions, basically.”

General Manager Jason Pena started with Japaneiro’s as a server, gradually working his way to become an indispensable part of Jupiter. Pena is charged with making sure the restaurant runs smoothly, interacting with customers, making important operational decisions and working with the chef on menu items.

Neither the owners nor Pena have formal culinary training, but Jupiter has received recognition for its food and service, Pena said. Part of what makes Jupiter successful is the attention paid to detail and the staff’s ability to listen to feedback while maintaining the restaurant’s own taste and brand, he said.

“We make our own pulled pork, which for a pizza place is crazy,” Pena said. “We make our own brisket. Our pulled pork and brisket—I’d put it up to any barbecue place.”

Menu development is a fun and creative process, involving staff and customer opinions, Litwinenko said.

“We’ll start with something, and it’ll be completely different by the time it makes it to the menu because we took input from the customers,” Litwinenko said.

It is a system based largely on trial and error, he said. A pizza with Flaming Hot Cheetos proved unsuccessful, but the Ricky Bobby sandwich, referencing the 2006 comedy film “Talledega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby” starring Will Ferrell, features fried chicken and Texas toast and has been wildly popular with patrons.

The restaurant has amassed a following of regular customers, Litwinenko said. Many have inquired about plans to open locations outside of Sugar Land.

“We’re not against that idea,” he said. “We would have to find the right place, the right market.”

For now, the focus is on developing new ideas and serving food in fun, unique ways, Litwinenko said.

“There’s always something brewing,” he said.

Jupiter Pizza & Waffles Co.
16135 City Walk, Sugar Land
281-313-1008
Hours: Tue.-Fri.11 a.m.-10 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m.-10 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.-9 p.m., closed Mondays
www.jupiterpizzaandwaffles.com


MOST RECENT

VIDEO: Texas Tribune interview with Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar about the coronavirus's effects on the state economy

At 8 a.m. April 7, The Texas Tribune will host a live interview with Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar, conducted by Texas Tribune Executive Editor Ross Ramsey.

Total coronavirus cases in the Greater Houston area continue to rise. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Coronavirus case count: Houston confirms 402 new cases, citing backlog

Total coronavirus cases in the Greater Houston area continue to rise.

A car enters an empty parking lot at Rice Village on March 27. With social distancing measures in effect, small businesses have taken a hit. (Matt Dulin/Community Impact Newspaper)
April 6: 5 coronavirus stories South Houston readers should know

Here are five stories from our last week of coronavirus coverage in South Houston.

The parent training sessions are designed to help parents understand the tools their children will use during online learning. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Fort Bend ISD hosts parent training sessions as teacher-facilitated instruction gets underway

Each of the four available sessions will be offered on the hour from 4-8 p.m. April 7 and April 9.

mailbox home
Fort Bend County encourages mail-in ballots for July primary runoff, November elections

The deadline to apply for a mail-in ballot is July 2 for the primary runoff election.

NRG Stadium
Construction underway for coronavirus medical shelter at NRG Stadium

Just weeks after the Houston Rodeo was canceled due to fears of coronavirus community spread, NRG Stadium is undergoing a transformation to serve as an ancillary medical site for patients.

Essential workers struggling to find child care amid coronavirus shutdowns can now find a provider and potentially receive financial assistance through a new Southeast Texas database. (Courtesy Pexels)
Essential workers in Southeast Texas can now search for child care, receive financial assistance

Essential workers struggling to find child care amid coronavirus shutdowns can now find a provider and potentially receive financial assistance through a new Southeast Texas database.

Fort Bend ISD, along with Missouri City, will hold virtual meetings on April 6. (Claire Shoop/Community Impact Newspaper)
Meeting preview: Fort Bend ISD, Missouri City, Sugar Land, Fort Bend County to hold virtual meetings April 6, 7

Here is a preview of key items on each agenda and information on how to address the entity or watch live.

The Quail Valley Golf Course in Missouri City remains open and has tee times available daily. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
To-Do List: Virtual, social distancing-approved things to do in Sugar Land and Missouri City, April 6-12

Although traditional events have been canceled, many local organizations and businesses are still offering virtual or at-home activities.

As of April 3, Fort Bend County is reporting 221 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, up from 194 just one day prior. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Latest coronavirus news in Sugar Land, Missouri City: Number of confirmed cases, recoveries, deaths continues to rise

Here are the latest coronavirus-related developments from around Sugar Land, Missouri City, Fort Bend County and Fort Bend ISD.

Houston Airport System officials expect March passenger data to be significantly lower than in other months. Foot traffic at IAH was light March 24. (Emily Heineman/Community Impact Newspaper)
TSA limits checkpoints at George Bush Intercontinental Airport; Houston Airport System expects significant decline in March passengers

With low passenger travel amid the coronavirus pandemic, Transportation Security Administration checkpoints at George Bush Intercontinental Airport have been consolidated to make better use of resources and personnel, Houston Airport System officials said.

Prices are more of an indicator of real estate activity during the coronavirus pandemic than location or geography, a local Realtor said.
ROUNDUP: 5 recent coronavirus stories from the South Houston area readers should know

Catch up on some of the latest coronavirus updates for the South Houston area below.