It’s hard to go a month in Reno without talking about pizza. The Biggest Little City seems to have endless options when it comes to everyone’s favorite take-out, and we’re not talking Domino’s, Pizza Hut and Round Table here. Wild Garlic, a local chain of pizzerias semi-, quasi- related to The Blind Onion franchise, remains in the conversation about best local pizzas.
The food is the biggest draw, of course, and we’ll get to that. But there is something about the atmosphere inside of a Wild Garlic that pairs pizzeria nostalgia from our youth with local-gathering-spot-to-grab-a-beer-with-friends vibes we’ve come to love in adulthood. The end product is a space to bring your family for Friday night pizza dinner or drink pints of local craft brew while splitting a pie with friends.
Now, for the grub. When it comes to Wild Garlic, I always think about the heat and spice of the pizza. Instead of resting on the cheese, pepperoni and combo pizzas that are the backbone of all pizza menus everywhere, Wild Garlic leans into a lineup of specialty creations that are more flavorful than most. (You can get that other stuff, too.)
Meat lovers can—and should—try the Angry Pig, a hearty blend of Al’s tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, Canadian bacon, salami, pepperoni, linguica, bacon and Italian sausage. For those who fall into the ranch-on-pizza camp, the creamy dipping sauce can certainly balance some of the spice, though mild enough for most palates on its own.
My personal favorite is the debatably odd combination of corn and pineapple that is the California, complete with chicken and a secret spice. The sauce is even different, using a “Cali4nia red sauce” instead of Al’s tomato.
One of the more popular pizzas on the menu is the eatery’s namesake, Wild Garlic—a blend of Wild Garlic sauce, mozzarella cheese, chicken, red onions, pepperoncini, roasted garlic and grated Parmesan. For those who like a myriad of flavors, this is the pizza for you.
Regardless of what type of pizza you order, everyone knows one thing about Wild Garlic: when it comes to the fluffy crust (honestly maybe the best crust on a pizza, like, ever), you don’t eat it plain and you don’t dip it in marinara or ranch. No, at Wild Garlic pizza crust is topped with honey, for a sweet and savory blend of bread and delicious, sticky honey that negates the need for dessert. If you opt for ranch instead, you may glean a side eye from staff.
Beers on tap rotate and may be different between the two locations—South Meadows and Mt. Rose Street—but in addition to your average domestic brews, the addition of local craft beers makes this beer menu stand out. There is also soda and house wine that you can purchase by the glass or carafe.
670 Mt. Rose Street
Sunday – Thursday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Friday – Saturday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
720 S. Meadows Pkwy.
Sunday – Thursday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Friday – Saturday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Nora Heston Tarte is a long-time Reno resident living on the southside of town. In addition to food, her hobbies include wine, hiking, yoga and travel. She is also the managing editor of a regional, lifestyle publication and freelances for other publications most frequently in the travel space. Nora received her bachelor’s in Journalism from California State University, Sacramento before graduating from University of Nebraska, Lincoln with a master’s in Professional Journalism. You can follow her travel adventures, and local exploits, on her Instagram account @wanderlust_n_wine.