Dan Murphy is now operating Cruisers on Post Road across from Benny’s and Kirsaki Pitliangas and her fiancé Dimos Apostolou are running the former Greenwich Pizza on South County Trail at Middle Road, aided by Kirsaki’s parents Saki and Chris. They are changing the name to Drizzle Pizza, reflecting a new type of pizza.
Murphy is a veteran of the food business, previously running a deli and restaurant and as the current owner of a food concession at Salty Brine beach. He also operates Quonset Motor Storage in North Kingstown.
Saki and Chris Pitilangas are helping Kirsaki and Dimos with their experience of a lifetime in the restaurant industry. Saki has a degree in engineering and Chris got a degree in teaching, but their love of the food business prevailed and they operated several restaurants in the Boston area.
Murphy says customers at Cruisers want takeout and quick sit-down service and that is his focus. He is bringing in fresh bread every day and has made the sandwiches a little bigger and the prices a little smaller. He has also added fish-and-chips and chowder, borrowing from his beach operation, but said otherwise the format hasn't changed.
He isn’t doing anything with the look of the building, which he says people like. He enjoys cars and says the restaurant is a perfect match for him.
Chris Pitliangas said they didn’t find the taste they wanted as they researched pizza, so Saki experimented and discovered that certain pizzas are enhanced when some ingredients are drizzled on during the process. They will maintain popular traditional pizzas, adding the drizzle offerings to the menu.
The economy is factoring into both operations. At Drizzle Pizza there are plans for Kirsaki to pursue business studies and for Dimos to continue his engineering studies, but it was decided to put those plans on a temporary hold to focus on the new business.
At Cruisers, Murphy is keeping an eye on gasoline prices, which he says will impact future business. He thinks that rising gas prices have a big affect on the disposable income available for dining out.
Both owners have community involvement as a component of their plans. Murphy, who has been running Cruisers since the first of the year, wants to do some fundraising for the East Greeenwich and North Kingstown schools and has already held one event for the school his son attends in North Kingstown. At Drizzle Pizza they have similar thoughts, and are looking for projects where they can help.