It all started in a garage.
But less than a year later, Shawn Medlock has swapped his garage for a brick-and-mortar storefront with the opening of Rumor Pizza Thursday north of Downtown Albuquerque.
Owned by Medlock and Nick Vacca, Rumor Pizza, at 724 Mountain NW, specializes in handmade 12-inch pizzas made from fermented dough and imported Italian ingredients.
Pizza-making started as a passion project for Medlock, who has been baking seriously since 2014, although his love for the craft dates back to childhood.
“Pizza’s always just been one of my favorite foods, so then it was just kind of like a natural progression,” he said.
Medlock said he began making and selling pizzas from his home during the pandemic, but he soon outgrew his garage and began to sell at local breweries like Gravity Bound Brewing Co. and Ex Novo Brewing Co. as a pop-up vendor.
It didn’t take long before people began to show up in droves.
“I think the pandemic has a lot to do with (the success), and it’s just forcing people to kind of explore other ways to get their food and it’s fun,” Medlock said.
Though Medlock said his concept has proved to be popular, he plans on keeping it as a small operation with him and Vacca as the only employees for now.
There will also only be a limited amount of pizza made each day, which means when it is sold out customers will have to come back another time.
Pizza will be served to-go, but patrons will be welcome to eat on the sidewalk or on the patio. “We’re just a pizza shop, we try not to be like a restaurant,” he said.
However, Medlock said there are plans to add a larger oven in the fall so Rumor will be able to offer larger sizes and pizza by the slice, and the pizza shop is currently in the process of obtaining a liquor license.
This is the first foray into the restaurant world for Medlock, who previously worked as a tattoo artist.
While he has swapped tattoo machines for pies, Medlock said his background in graphic design has helped out with designing the merchandise and logos, something he also attributes to the success of the business.
Rumor Pizza is open for take-out 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday through Saturday. Orders can be placed online at rumorpizza.com.
Online ordering opens at noon and is highly recommended.