When Broadsheet visits One Sneaky Cheetah’s new venue two days out from its launch, it’s largely still a construction site, but the hulking woodfired pizza ovens are already burning.
The dual yellow and black imported Marana ovens are being seasoned before they’re put to work adding a bit of smoke and char to One Sneaky Cheetah’s popular pizzas, which sit somewhere between the puffy-edged, leopard-spotted, Neapolitan style of sibling restaurant Pizzateca and the Aussie interpretations of your local neighbourhood pizza joint. Think ham and pineapple, a supreme and a meatlover, and smoky barbeque chicken – but done from scratch with hand-stretched, 48-hour-proofed dough, and sugo made from fresh Roma tomatoes.
“We’re doing that Napoletana style, but a lot of traditional Italian places would shudder at having a ham and pineapple pizza on their menu, or the barbeque chicken, and they’re two of our biggest sellers,” says co-owner Mark McInerney.
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The Stepney site is the third OSC venue from McInerney and Pizzateca co-owners Tony Mitolo and Tim Anderson, who launched the brand in 2022 in a former panelbeating workshop in Ridleyton before expanding with a second location in Melrose Park earlier this year. Bigger than the first two venues (with more seating and a full bar with beer on tap as well as an expanded drinks list) it’ll act as the flagship venue for the brand. And it arrives soon after new apartment complex Norwood Green – and its key retail tenant East End Cellars – right across the road.
“The fact that East End Cellars is there, both [of us] are like, ‘How good’s this?’” says McInerney.
“It’s such a good space for our third one. We sort of thought this might be coming further down the track, but it was right place, right time. It’s gonna be a bit of a hub around here, with a few things happening at once and all these people moving in … It’s really nice.”
The former printing warehouse is now plastered in One Sneaky Cheetah’s yellow, black and white branding, inside and out – from the black timber booths and leopard-spotted tabletops to the cheetah face logo on the walls, pizza boxes and staff T-shirts. The 487-square-metre site – which also has a function space (“The Cheetah Den”) with its own bar, an audio system and lighting set-up – also acts as a testing kitchen for the three venues (you can expect a “pizza of the month” in addition to the daily menu), and it continues the team’s commitment to nurturing fresh talent with a training program for aspiring pizzaiolos. (Nick, the head chef at Stepney, started out as a dishie at Pizzateca.)
“A really exciting aspect about what we’re doing here is being able to test things out and get a bit more experimental,” says McInerney.
The sprawling beer-hall-style restaurant brings with it all the same menu hits, including the crowd-favourite “cheetah tails” – amped up garlic bread made with woodfired pizza dough, garlic-herb butter and parmesan – and introduces a more extensive drinks list, including house wines, Pizzateca’s Oztalia shiraz, and drops from other local producers like Delinquente and Rieslingfreak (served in glassware here instead of plastic cups).
There’s also tap and tinned beers, and five different spritzes. And for the kids, two pinball machines and arcade games to play in between handling slices of ham and pineapple.
One Sneaky Cheetah
73 Magill Road, Stepney