When husband and wife Darby and Shelly DeBellis purchased Santa Monica Pizza & Pasta Ogden in June, their goal was to create a warm gathering spot and give back to the community.
They knew before buying the business that the food was delicious, but sales had been slow and they believed it was a marketing issue that could easily be solved. They've put in long hours this summer trying to build a solid reputation for quality food and service.
"We are here every day," Darby DeBellis said. "We know it is what we have to do and we are doing it. We are not going to stop."
They have kept the favorite menu items and made a few improvements.
"Every day, at least one person tells me this is the best pizza they have ever had," said Darby DeBellis. "We use really quality ingredients. The best we can get."
Shelly DeBellis' favorite appetizer is the Smothered Giant Meatballs ($5.99 for four). She is also excited for a new salad on the menu, the Santa Monica Chop Chop ($8.99), with pepperoni, prosciutto, olives, roasted tomatoes, artichoke hearts, red onion and provolone on a bed of greens.
The Wise Greek Pasta ($8.99) is made with made-from-scratch Alfredo sauce, grilled chicken, artichoke hearts, olives, roasted tomatoes, spinach and feta.
Their pizza dough is made from scratch daily and cooked in a wood-fired oven. Some favorites include the Santa Monica ($6.99), with pesto, spinach, grilled chicken, barbecue sauce, red onion, roasted tomato and bacon; and the Super Freak ($6.99) with red sauce, pepperoni, sausage, ham, mushrooms, onions, black olives and bell pepper.
A new addition to the menu, the Royal Bliss ($6.99), was named for a popular Utah band that has played at the restaurant. It features bourbon sauce, steak, red onions, roasted tomatoes and mushrooms.
The restaurant provides live entertainment on Friday and Saturday nights. The DeBellises hope that locals will come back and give them a chance. To show their appreciation to certain workers in the community, they offer a 25 percent discount to military, firefighters, police and emergency medical services workers.
The couple are also in the process of redecorating to add a beach mural and surfboards in the dining room.
SANTA MONICA PIZZA & PASTA OGDEN
- ADDRESS: 2327 Washington Blvd., Ogden
- HOURS: 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays
- PHONE: 801-334-4295