by Jim Mulligan
There’s a new place in town to grab a pizza and a few other savory treats on a Friday night—or any day of the week for that matter. The Pirate’s Den opened its doors recently this summer and is welcoming patrons who want to satisfy their hunger pangs with delicious pizzas, sandwiches or sizzling chicken wings. I stopped by recently to take home a pizza and wings, and had a chance to chat with owner Victor Villacaña about the new restaurant venture.
KRL: What was the impetus for opening a new restaurant in Reedley?
Victor: Owning a pizza restaurant was never a dream of mine. Deciding to take ownership of this pizza restaurant was actually an opportunity that was offered to me, rather than a lifelong ambition. I used to work for the old owner in high school, and I happened to come in one day to visit him; that is when he offered it to me. After a few days of sleeping on it, I came up with my decision to run with it and enjoy the endeavor. I also had a slight push from Rene (El Rincon), who has been a lifelong friend and great resource for this road ahead of me.
KRL: What was your personal motivation to get into the pizza business?
Victor: My personal motivation to get into the pizza business was a no brainer! I enjoyed my job back in high school. I wanted to continue that fun work environment, not just for my staff, but to create and continue a great atmosphere for customers as well. It was also nice to be able to help my former boss retire so he could enjoy his golden years as he greatly deserves.
KRL: Tell us about your connections, past and present, with Reedley and Reedley High School.
Victor: I was born and raised in Reedley. I attended Alta School, Navelencia School, and graduated from high school in 2007. Go Pirate’s!
KRL: Why did you decide to call your restaurant The Pirate’s Den?
Victor: I decided to call my business The Pirate’s Den to kind of stick with the pirate themed names of the past, along with providing the community a place to call their own here in town. So, if anyone has any ideas for wall decor we’re open for ideas.
KRL: What are your goals as a business?
Victor: Short term goals for us are to keep providing our customers with quality and consistent menu items before we begin to expand our menu, including dessert options. Long term would be a second and possibly third location within the Central Valley.
KRL: What makes your restaurant/pizza stand out from other places to eat in Reedley?
Victor: I know for a fact that our pizza is favored a lot by our customers in comparison to others in town. We do take our time when preparing everything to ensure consistency and quality with every pizza, calzone, and sub sandwich. It really bothers me when a place doesn’t give it its all when making their food.
KRL: Do you have any signature pizzas or foods on your menu?
Victor: As for signature items I just introduced a Mexican-style pizza today that has been requested by customers from the first week we opened. As time permits I will introduce more signature items.
KRL: As the restaurant gets established, do you have any plans to expand?
Victor: I do want to expand once I get my footing with this restaurant. For it being my first business it has taken quite a bit of time, patience, and attention to say the least. We aim to please our customers, so if there is anything that you would like to see us cook up here, just let us know.
In this author’s opinion, Reedley boasts a variety of quality restaurant choices. It’s great that we have yet another fantastic dining option. Make your way over to The Pirate’s Den soon to try out some of their great food options.
The Pirates Den
1550 Manning Ave.
Facebook page: www.facebook.com/The-Pirates-Den-102149298552733
Be sure to check out more Reedley articles in our Reedley category.