Welcome Home to Teddy’s Spaghetti and Pizza


By Paul Bonnette

Teddys Spaghetti OwnersThe oven-fired scent of fresh baked pizza wafts through the air as friendly folks greet you eagerly as if they had been waiting for you to arrive. It’s tough to write a “restaurant review” about a place that is less like a restaurant and more like being welcomed into someone’s home as they unveil and try out dish after dish of Italian cuisine for you to enjoy. That being said, welcome to the “home” review of Teddy’s Spaghetti and Pizza.

From the moment I sat down to look over the menu, I noticed a pattern. Hungry, but happy patrons, most of whom walked through the door for takeout, came in not only to pick up their meal, but to let the owners know how much they loved the food. Orders were being delivered all the way to Chipley and Youngstown some thirty miles away, clearly demonstrating that the pizza I was about to try was something special (and it truly was).

Teddys Spaghetti FoodTeddy’s Spaghetti and Pizza offers something that the myriad of other Italian restaurants do not. Weird & wacky. Yes, you read that correctly. Are you in the mood for Dill Pickle Pizza? How about Taco Pizza or Spaghetti Pizza? Oh, how I wish that I could tell you that I am adventurous when it comes to dining, however this is far from the truth. I stuck with my tried-and-true pepperoni (and added grilled chicken to be slightly more adventurous) and it was glorious. The spaghetti dinner that my wife ordered was also impressively delicious complete with salad and garlic bread. For those who have a few more mouths to feed, they offer family feasts that include ½ gallon pasta, salad, sub, garlic bread and soda. For dessert, we could not resist trying the monthly special which happened to be Bananas Foster. Their specials change month by month which means I will be frequenting this establishment regularly to try their newest creations.

Teddy’s Spaghetti and Pizza is the type of restaurant that you stroll into after a long day to enjoy a delectable Italian meal that the entire family will enjoy, which is exactly what owners Ted and Julie Nitz were going for. Five years ago, Ted and Julie Nitz created Teddy’s Spaghetti because they wanted a local favorite pasta restaurant just like they enjoyed with their family back in the Midwest. The opportunity to make that dream a reality appeared when the owner of Marcus’ Gulf Pizza decided to enjoy a well-deserved retirement, allowing Ted and Julie to open their restaurant while still maintaining that famous forty-year-old crunchy pizza dough. To create the perfect pasta sauce, Ted and Julie hosted a taste-testing event at their home trying out six different sauces just to make sure they chose the best one. Even now, as they are constantly trying out new recipes and unveiling new specials, it’s hard not to notice the indelible feeling of being welcomed home to try out some of these new dishes.

's Spaghetti Food2When they are not cooking up a storm… Ted and Julie have been focused on giving back to the community by volunteering at Lucky Puppy Rescue and sponsoring the Arnold High School Marching Band. If you ask Ted however, it’s all just part of the mission. “When we came back, this is one of the ways we decided we were going to set some roots. We love this town, and we are happy to just add a different dynamic and serve this town.”

Whether you are in the mood for weird and wacky or a pasta combo to feed every member of your crew, Teddy’s Spaghetti and Pizza has it all. They are located at 7010 Thomas Drive on Panama City Beach and open from 4 p.m. – 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Enjoy!