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New Restaurant Brings Tasty Calzones to Carmel

Photographer / Michael Durr

Ready for something different that will beat pizza fatigue? Newly opened eatery, Sauce on the Side, located at 12751 N. Pennsylvania Street, serves up calzones with innovative flavor combinations plus a seemingly unlimited capacity to customize them. As an alternative to traditional pizza, calzones are an Italian specialty made from a circle of dough folded in half, stuffed with fillings and baked until the outside is crispy. And, as the name indicates, sauce is served on the side.

Carmel is the first site for a Sauce on the Side franchise in Indiana. The St. Louis-based company began in 2012 when three friends, Ryan Mangialardo, Brendon Maciariello and Dan Porzel decided to sell calzones. Their initial shop became so popular that by 2016, they expanded to three locations. They began to offer franchising opportunities in 2018.

Tony Withouse, Director of Sales and Marketing, explains how the Carmel location came to be.

“Partners Mike Hammond and Kels Watson were visiting St. Louis,” he says. “They happened to eat at a Sauce on the Side restaurant. They loved it so much they pursued opening a franchise as owner operators.

“Sauce on the Side is different from the usual fast-casual concept,” Withouse adds. “Instead of only being spoken to when ordering at the counter, employees are constantly interacting with customers while they are dining to make sure they have everything they need. And everything is made to order right then.”

The menu features witty named calzones priced around $9.50. Some give a nod to television shows such as the Costanza which is filled with pepperoni, eggplant, roasted garlic, basil and cheeses or the Five-O consisting of pancetta, pineapple, red peppers and smoked cheddar. The Magic Carpet Ride is packed with a variety of mushrooms and the Which Came First contains both chicken meat and an egg yolk. A calzone with macaroni and cheese, The Cock-A-Doodle Noodle, was shown on an episode of the Travel Channel’s Food Paradise.

“The most popular is the Meet Me in St. Louie,” Withouse says. “It’s stuffed with lots of cheese, pepperoni and Italian Sausage. Everything is customizable. People can switch sauces or substitute different ingredients. Or they can build their own with the 75 different fillings and 12 sauces offered.”

The menu also includes salads starting at $6 and desserts for $7. Italian and Caesar are listed but there are also unexpected options. Strawberry Fields is a mixture of greens laced with strawberries and feta. The Beets Me features golden beats. Caramel Apple Pie and Nutella Banana calzones will satisfy those with a sweet tooth.

“We like to support smaller, localized companies,” Withouse adds. “The craft sodas we serve come from Excel Bottling in Illinois. We serve local beers, featured drafts and wine. And we have our own delivery service. We use our own dedicated car.

“Honestly, opening in Carmel has been way better than I expected,” he says. “I am constantly getting positive feedback. Catering is exploding as well. We are looking forward to opening additional Indiana locations soon.”

Sauce on the Side is open 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday. Call 317-669-0233 or visit SauceOnTheSide.com.

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