After a morning of shopping in Crested Butte, CO, I received a text from my husband letting me know he was done snowboarding and wanted to grab a pizza. So we stopped by the popular pizza joint, The Secret Stash for a quick late lunch.
Crested Butte, Co, The Secret Stash
The place was buzzing. It had so much character. Cool objects were hung all over the walls, including old records, tapestries, etc. In the back, Tibetan statues were proudly displayed along with a very unusual chariot-style bike. Most of these items were collected from all over the world by founder Kyleena Falzone.
Best Pizza in Crested Butte
The Secret Stash is known for its exotic pizza toppings. Although it is New York style pizza, the names listed on the menu, and ingredients used were quite unusual.
Joel Lewis is a manager at Secret Stash and was very knowledgeable about the menu. He is also a longtime friend of the co-owner, Kyleena Falzone. Lewis previously owned the bar across the street called Talk of the Town. He said Falzone has always supported him as a fellow business owner, suggesting ways for him to earn extra income with his bar by selling merch.
Being a restauranteur came natural to Falzone, as she was inspired at an early age by her grandparents who were both in the business. After college, she traveled to over eighty countries working in restaurants in Australia, New Zealand, and Thailand, which further propelled her desire to open her own restaurant. Falzone worked in some of the best restaurants in the U.S. such as Sweet Basil and The Game Creek in Vail, Pino Lunge’s Sapore Di Mare in the Hamptons, and Gar Wood’s in Lake Tahoe CA. After all that on-the-job training, Falzone opened her first restaurant at just 28 years old. The Clarence Center Coffee Company in Buffalo NY is still running today (as of March 2023). Falzone foundedThe Secret Stash in 2001 in Crested Butte, CO.
Carson West later came aboard as a co-owner. He has a background in creative restaurant design, build, and management. West is also a major outdoorsman.
The menu is vast and features hilarious names of specialty pizzas. Lewis explained in-depth the nature of each pizza pie, and why its customers loved it. Names such as You’re Driving Me Caprese (Olive oil base, Fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, salt & pepper crust with fresh basil, garnished with pickled red onions & balsamic reduction), Where’s The Beef (olive oil base, light mozzarella, minced garlic, red onions, mushrooms, black figs, asiago cheese, fresh basil, topped with balsamic reduction & truffle oil), and more just cracked me up.
THE most popular pizza of The Secret Stash and winner of the World Champion Pizza Challenge, is the Notorious F.I.G. (Mozzarella, bleu & asiago cheeses, thinly sliced prosciutto, dried black mission figs & a drizzle of truffle oil).
Other favorites include: Texas Biggin’ (traditional sauce, mozzarella, pepperoni, sausage, Canadian bacon, onions, bell peppers, mushrooms & black olives), The Hamptons (olive oil base, mozzarella, prosciutto, lemon pepper crust, garnished with arugula, shaved parmesan & a lemon crown), see the below photo, and Meatball Pie (traditional sauce, meatballs, roasted garlic, white onions, mushrooms, mozzarella, asiago & provolone cheese & a little extra sauce).
Of course if you really want to venture out of the ordinary, the Mac Daddy may be just the pie for you. It includes thousand island dressing, mozzarella, shaved ribeye, onions, American & cheddar cheese, topped with cool lettuce, pickles, on a sesame seed crust – this is the locals favorite.
After learning all about these specialty pizzas, due to my husband’s finicky palate, we ended up selecting our own pizza toppings – half meatball and crunchy bacon, and half mushroom and pepperoni. But alas, we were inspired by the Meatball Pie. I also enjoyed a glass of the Lifevine Pinot Noir. This delicious red offered beautiful notes of plum, with dark berries on the palate. A lovely pairing for the meal to come.
The pizza looked gorgeous when it arrived at the table, and the crust had a glorious cornicione puff. I couldn’t wait to take a bite. It was superb – crispy, yet airy inside. The healthy portion of cheese piled on top was gooey and had a luscious velvety stretch – so tasty. The bacon was nestled into the cheese and so worth the unexpected crunchy surprise, while the meatballs were prominent, and full of flavor. The mushroom and pepperoni side of the pizza offered a comforting, yet zesty zip that awoke my palate .
I encourage anyone visiting Crested Butte to check out The Secret Stash. I mean who doesn’t like pizza? Plus all of the servers seemed like they were having a great time. The entire vibe of our lunch/dinner was fun because of the atmosphere of the restaurant, and all of its employees. So don’t miss this popular eatery. It’s not just a meal, it’s an experience. The Secret Stash, 303 Elk Ave, Crested Butte, CO 81224; http://www.secretstash.com/
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