The most metal pizza establishment to ever exist!

So this past weekend, I was in Illinois getting some stuff done for my father who recently passed away. I wrote a nice story on a memory of us earlier today. My father had recently moved closer to his family near Edwardsville, Illinois. Cruising around town with my Aunt on Saturday, I happened to notice a restaurant. Pantera Pizza!

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Get the f*** out of here. Someone named a pizza place after a metal band?! Sadly...no. This was apparently a very popular chain back in the 80's way before Pantera got famous. They once had 120 locations throughout Missouri and Illinois. From what I can see, only three exist now.

They were famous for their giant pizza and an arcade for the kids. Pizza and arcade for the kids? Yeah screw you Chuck E. Cheese, Pantera was the place to be back in the day. What's insane to me, Pantera was bought out by a Dallas based company. Not too far from where Pantera(the band) got their start in Arlington.

However, with the Dallas purchase, they thought they knew how to advertise in the Midwest. They started using a cowboy instead of the signature Mario, which you can see in the commercial above. This apparently rubbed people the wrong way and Pantera's started closing left and right.

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Also more national competition moving in didn't help either. Domino's and Pizza Hut started eating into their profits in the late 80s and into the 90s. Pantera's filed for bankruptcy in the 90s, but franchise locations still held the rights to the name. They now own and operate without having to pay anyone to use the name Pantera's Pizza.

Pantera's peak was apparently in 1987. They held more than half of the pizza sales in all of St. Louis at the time. So if you're ever in Edwardsville, Illinois, Hazlewood, Missouri or O'Fallon Missouri, go try a Pantera Pizza.

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