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Official Phoenix Suns ‘Courtside Classic’ available at Spinato’s starting Oct. 11

Photo of owner of Spinato's and the Phoenix Suns Gorilla
Anthony Spinato and the Phoenix Suns Gorilla. (File Photos/

Spinato’s and Phoenix Suns Gorilla find recipe for pizza prosperity

Staff Reports | Digital Free Press

He was quick to roll the dough and eager to stir the sauce. He tasted each of the toppings several times, sometimes a bit too much. He danced around the kitchen enthusiastically — almost knocking over a big jar of pickled jalapeños in the process.

At the end of the day, however, the Phoenix Suns Gorilla was instrumental in helping the Spinato family create a new “Courtside Classic Pizza” that will be available at all Spinato’s locations and at Footprint Center starting Tuesday, Oct. 11, according to a press release.

The Gorilla’s visit to Spinato’s took place shortly after Spinato’s Pizzeria & Family Kitchen and the Phoenix Suns and Phoenix Mercury formed a new partnership that recognizes Spinato’s as the basketball franchise’s “Official Pizza.”

In return, the popular pizzeria will promote Suns and Mercury games to its patrons at all six locations Valleywide, the release states.

Anthony Spinato, co-owner of Spinato’s, thanked the Gorilla for his surprisingly savvy pizza-making skills.

“We didn’t know what to expect, but he did a pretty good job helping me in the kitchen,” he said. “He’s nimble and has a good work ethic. If he wasn’t working for the Suns, we might consider hiring him.”

After testing out several new recipes, the Spinato family and the Gorilla decided on a pizza featuring Spinato’s classic red sauce, hot Soppressata — an Italian dry salami — Spinato’s secret spice, house-pickled jalapeños, red onions and mozzarella.

Spinato’s solicited the public’s help to choose the name of the new pizza. The winning name, “Courtside Classic” was submitted by Maria Lindner, and she won a $100 gift card.

The “Courtside Classic” pizza by Spinato’s Pizzeria & Family Kitchen. (File Photos/

Spinato’s hosts Oct. 11 launch party

To celebrate the new partnership and the new “Courtside Classic” pizza, Spinato’s is hosting a launch party from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 11, at Spinato’s central Phoenix location, 5509 N. 7th St. The party will feature the Phoenix Suns Gorilla, Phoenix Suns Dancers, the Mercury Scorch, State 48 and Four Peaks Brewing Company.

Starting Oct. 11, patrons visiting Spinato’s locations will be able to purchase a large “Courtside Classic” pizza for $28.50.

Anthony Spinato said Suns and Mercury fans will find the quality of pizza at Footprint Center to be just as fresh as the pizza served at Spinato restaurants.

“We will be rolling out our fresh dough before every single event. Nothing will be frozen, and all our ingredients will be fresh. We promised ourselves that we would not commit to this partnership unless we could meet the teams at half-court,” he said.

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