It’s hard to believe that a restaurant that serves up something as tasty as pizza would have a difficult time staying in business. Much to the surprise of anyone with taste buds, some pizza shops are struggling to keep their doors open. These are the 10 Pizza Chains That Are Sadly Disappearing Across America.
10. Mr. Gatti’s Pizza
Mr. Gatti’s Pizza is more of a local hot spot than a national chain. You can find Mr. Gatti’s Pizza joints in several different states across the country. Mr. Gatti’s Pizza is a popular place for parents to take their kids who are having parties. What kid doesn’t love the idea of inviting all of their friends to a pizza parlor? Pizza is one of the few foods that even picky kids will eat. You can’t get a kid to eat their vegetables, but pizza, that stuff goes down quicker than candy. Kids and adults alike eat pizza and that’s why even the parents like to go to Mr. Gatti’s Pizza. Do you have to worry about your local Mr. Gatti’s Pizza closing up shop? Well, no one seems to know for sure. They have filed for bankruptcy, and several of their locations were closed in the past few years. If that means all of them are going to close up shop…well that’s anyone’s guess. It’s possible that somehow they will find a way to stay open if they’re able to restructure their business. Anyone who pretends to know if Mr. Gatti’s Pizza is here to stay is only guessing. We can only hope that Mr. Gatti’s Pizza will continue on and eventually weather through this storm. If not, then they will become one of the many pizza chains that are gone, but not forgotten.
9. California Pizza Kitchen
Hungry mall shoppers all seem to flock to California Pizza Kitchen. Their catchy pizzas are beyond trendy and the company has their finger on the pulse of what shoppers want to eat in between visits to stores. So, what’s the problem with California Pizza Kitchen if they’re churning out delicious pizza after delicious pizza? The problem they have is one that many similar chains have and that is they tend to be located in shopping malls. No one is going to the mall these days like they used to, and that’s why foot traffic is down. Restaurants and other shops pay a hefty rental fee to have their business located in a mall. Today, the price they pay for rent isn’t worth it, considering fewer and fewer people are shopping at malls. The company behind California Pizza Kitchen needs to act quickly before it’s too late. How would you ever live knowing you may never eat another slice of their BBQ chicken pizza? Life can’t go on without a slice of their pie, and hopefully, someone at California Pizza Kitchen realizes that. Malls are a thing of the past and there is no way of getting around that fact. However, there are still quite a few people who crave pizza and the hope is they find a way to connect with them. The key for this company to stay in the bellies of people all over the country will be finding new locations that aren’t so pricy. Customers still want their pizza, the problem is, going to the mall to get a slice is not what most people want.
8. Papa Murphy’s
It might not be too surprising that Papa Murphy’s could be going the way of the dodo bird. You see, if you order a pizza from Papa Murphy’s, you’ve got to bake it yourself. No, Papa Murphy’s doesn’t bake their own pizza. Papa Murphy’s sells what is often referred to as take and bake pizza. That means no pizza that leaves their restaurant is cooked. You’ve got to be a Papa Murphy’s fan to understand why anyone would buy a pizza and cook it at home. That’s almost like going to KFC and buying chicken covered in their secret herbs and spices and frying it up at home. It sounds kind of silly at first, but many people like to bake pizza, they just don’t want to go through all the hassle of making it themselves. Papa Murphy’s has tried delivery as a means of spiking sales, but they still face the problem of people having to cook their own pizza. Who wants an uncooked pizza delivered to them? You want the pizza to be fresh and hot when it comes to your door. Papa Murphy’s whips up a mighty fine pizza, but no one wants to cook it at home. Someone should send them a memo and say that the public wants their pizza already baked. Who knows, Papa Murphy’s might serve up some of the best pizza, but most will never know since they want a pie that’s piping hot with melted cheese covering the entire thing.
7. Pie Five Pizza
Pie Five Pizza is a chain that some of you might not be familiar with. Pie Five Pizza isn’t as big as their competition, but they’ve been around for well over half a century. If you’re one of their loyal customers, then you probably already know that several Pie Five Pizza restaurants have closed up shop in the past few years. It has to make you shake in fear when you hear about the possibility of your favorite Pie Five Pizza location shutting its doors for good. As anyone who has eaten at Pie Five Pizza knows, this is a fast-casual dining experience that isn’t seen very often in the world of pizza. Eating here is a delightful experience that makes a person feel like they aren’t in a typical pizzeria. The competition has a way of eating up smaller chains like Pie Five Pizza. There’s always a war going on between pizza companies, and it is relentless. And because of the ongoing pizza wars, a chain such as Pie Five Pizza can not survive by being passive. If Pie Five Pizza wants to survive, they will have to take the big boys head-on. Those who find themselves in the middle of the pizza wars know how hard these companies are fighting for our cold hard cash.
6. Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom
Deep dish – is it pizza or a casserole? We aren’t going to touch this topic with a ten-foot pole. There are those who swear that deep dish is pizza and calling it anything else is a mockery of the pie. Anyone east of Chicago thinks that pizza crust should be paper thin and flimsy. Marriages have dissolved into bitter disputes over this topic and there is no end in sight. Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom is a joint where you can get served a deep-dish pie alongside a frothy mug of cold beer. Regardless of the type of pizza you like, what Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom offers has to sound pretty good. It seems that Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom is struggling to determine if they should open new locations or close those restaurants that seem to be underperforming. All chains face this struggle at some point and some come out of it better than others. It’s going to take a level head and plenty of patience for them to wade through the numbers and see which locations need to be closed and the areas where new restaurants might perform well. It’s a delicate balancing act, but if anyone can do it, Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom can.
5. Marco’s Pizza
Marco’s Pizza is going through a rapid expansion phase. But it seems that they are kind of undecided when it comes to where they want their stores. If you live out West, then you probably aren’t familiar with Marco’s Pizza. Those who are in the Eastern half of the country might have a Marco’s Pizza location near them. The big problem is, Marco’s Pizza has a tendency to pack their bags and leave. It seems that Marco’s Pizza is here today and gone tomorrow without any trace. The strangest thing about their coming and going is the company never says anything about it. There is no rhyme or reason why the restaurants come and go on what seems like a whim. If you’re fortunate enough to have a Marco’s Pizza in your area, gobble that stuff up. You never know when the opportunity to order a pie will be long gone. Marco’s Pizza is good stuff, and it’s surprising why the company seems to do the things that they do. You’d think a pizzeria that turns out the quality of pies they do would work harder on sticking around. A company doesn’t stay around as long as Marco’s Pizza without knowing what they’re doing, the problem is, they play everything so close to the vest. The company is working hard to climb the ladder and become one of America’s top pizza chains, but they’ve got to fix the problem of disappearing stores before that can happen.
4. Chuck E. Cheese’s
How many fond childhood memories do you have at Chuck E. Cheese’s? It’s not only about the pizza at Chuck E. Cheese’s, there’s also all the games and fun. Chuck E. Cheese’s is a fun place to go, and you don’t need to be a kid to enjoy yourself. Admit it; you love going to Chuck E. Cheese’s because it’s the one place where you don’t have to act your age. Sometimes it’s fun to allow yourself to relax and enjoy the moment. Everyone who goes to Chuck E. Cheese’s is the same age deep inside, and that’s what makes this place so much fun to visit. Every parent loves Chuck E. Cheese’s because the pizza is great and the atmosphere is even better. Sadly though, Chuck E. Cheese’s is struggling, and they may not be around much longer. The lure of video games isn’t what it once was since almost every household has at least one electronic device capable of playing games. Who are we fooling? Kids are not interested in a novelty restaurant these days. The video games that were once a draw to the restaurant are now no big deal. The animatronic mascots were also kinda cool, but impressing the kids of today takes a little more. Maybe holographs are a way for Chuck E. Cheese’s to up their tech game for today’s kids.
3. Papa John’s
Papa John’s has been in the news lately for all the wrong reasons. Any company that has received as much negative press as they have is bound to suffer some consequences. The idea that they are battling it out for the livelihood of their company isn’t an understatement in the least. The pizza chain very well could end up a footnote in history if they aren’t careful. A lot of this has been brought on by the founder of the company, but beyond that, they haven’t done a good job at rebranding themselves. Some companies are better than others at bouncing back from problems, but Papa John’s can’t seem to catch their footing. It’s hard to imagine that anyone could’ve handled everything they faced in a worse way. Better ingredients? Well, that’s up for debate, and you can duke it out with your friends over your next pizza order. Better pizza? Papa John’s is some good stuff and it is better than what their competition is taking out of the oven. But there is no shortage of good or even great pizza and this is one company who needs to realize that.
Cicis is the only all you can eat option on our list. How can an all you can eat restaurant perform poorly? You pay one price and shovel as much pizza into your mouth as humanly possible. You’d think there would be a line outside Cicis a mile long. Well apparently not. Go figure. It says a lot when you can’t sell all you can eat pizza. I mean, wouldn’t all you can eat pizza be one of everyone’s wishes if a genie popped out of a lantern? Cicis offers a cheap solution for families who want to eat out but don’t have a huge budget. Serving pizza up buffet style seems like a good idea since everyone can have their own choice of toppings. For the price, Cicis pizza isn’t all that bad. That last sentence sums up Cicis problem in a nutshell. The price is right, but the pizza, well, it kinda falls short. It’s just not great pizza, but you do get a lot of it for the money. You can sit there all day long and eat as much pizza and drain glass after glass of soda and still have change left over from a ten-dollar bill. Some Cicis restaurants only charge $5.99 for their all you can eat pizza buffet. Cicis proves that it takes more than price and quantity to lure hungry people through the doors of a restaurant.
1. Pizza Hut
It’s with a heavy heart that we inform you that many Pizza Hut locations are struggling and risk being closed up forever. Pizza Hut is by far the industry leader and everyone who loves pizza has chowed down on their pies more than once. You can’t think of pizza without first thinking about Pizza Hut. Pizza Hut serves up delicious pies, and they’re one of the few pizza joints that also serves beer. You can buy beer by the bottle or the pitcher to go along with your pizza pie. Everyone knows that pizza and beer go together, like sunshine and rainbows. So, why are so many Pizza Hut locations closing? Customer habits are shifting and this is reflected in how people are buying pizza. Many people are now placing orders online or using delivery services like Uber Eats. There aren’t as many people who want to have a dine-in experience when ordering pizza. Many of the Pizza Hut locations that have closed were built in a time when diners wanted to eat pizza inside the restaurant. Now customers want their pizza delivered to them, and that’s why Pizza Hut is shutting down so many stores. The average Pizza Hut customer who doesn’t dine in has nothing to worry about since they will still deliver their pies as usual. The customers who are at risk the most are those who eat inside the restaurant since the days of a Pizza Hut with a dining room may be coming to a close.