Prosciutto e rucola pizza from Il Cane Rosso on April 07, 2011 in Dallas' Deep Ellum

Prosciutto e rucola pizza from Il Cane Rosso on April 07, 2011 in Dallas' Deep Ellum

Ben Torres

Looks like Carrollton won't be the only city getting a new Cane Rosso Neapolitan pizzeria this year. Restaurateur Jay Jerrier is taking the concept down south to trendy Houston neighborhood The Heights.

Construction will begin this summer and Jerrier hopes for a December open date, he said. The Carrollton restaurant is expected to open in June. It's the fifth in North Texas behind ones in East Dallas, Fort Worth, Fairview and the original in Deep Ellum.

Speaking by phone Tuesday, Jerrier said he originally scouted Austin for places to expand, but decided against it after finding several beloved pizza places and having trouble working with the city. Houston is more like Dallas, he said, with enough sprawl that it could "easily support multiple" Cane Rosso locations. So can Houstonians expect more than one?

"I hope so, but it depends," Jerrier said. "If we open and everyone hates it, then probably not."

Finding enough space was an issue in Jerrier's year-long search for a location, especially when accounting for the restaurant's signature 900-degree, wood-fire oven. At 4,000 square feet, the restaurant in The Heights will be the second smallest of six in the Cane Rosso fam. (Only the one in Fairview is smaller.) It will have a full bar and a pet-friendly patio. Absolutely no ranch dressing allowed, Jerrier added.

Cane Rosso is a staple among North Texas foodies. The restaurant made the cut in The Dallas Morning News' Best in DFW: Pizza last year. It also notched "best buy $25 and under" in a Zagat survey.

Jerrier's other pizza venture, Zoli's New York Pizza Tavern -- billed as a place for people who hate Cane Rosso -- is not slated to make a Houston debut this year. But beyond that, the prospect isn't out of the question.

"If there's enough interest and the market's strong, we'll definitely try it," he said.

h/t Eater Dallas

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