Arguably at the top of growth chain for the fast casual dining segment, the relatively new “made on demand” concept pizza places appeal to customers on three points: value pricing, quality ingredients, and fast service.
There are quite a few entrants into the category already, including Blaze, MOD, and Pie Five, which was started and isowned by the same group that owns the successful chain, Pizza Inn (I like their buffets). I think that gives them a leg up on the competition.
It works kind of like Chipotle or Subway, you walk through a line, pick one of the specialty pies, or design your own, choosing your crust (including a gluten free option), sauce, cheese, and toppings, all for one price. The pie is popped into a scorching hot oven and one in just a few minutes, as opposed to the quarter hour a conventional pizza deck or conveyor oven take to go through the same process.
I tried out two today, at a pre opening fete. The “Athenian” comes with a thin crust, olive oil, herbs, chicken, garlic, olives, onion, peppers, feta, mozzarella/provolone blend, fresh basil, and sun dried tomato puree.
The “High Five” is their version of an all meat pie, on a pan crust, with marinara, pepperoni, Italian sausage, bacon, ham, and a cheddar, mozz, provolone blend.
The “assembly line” is fast and furious, as is the oven time. At the end, they will ask you “for here or to go” and whether you want additional Parmesan or pepper flakes; if you’re eating in, those add-ons are also on the table. Pie Five has the ‘magic’ coke dispensers, when you can crank out one or a combo of a hundred beverages, and also three kinds of ice tea, as well as some bottled drinks.
The 9 ” pizzas were excellent, I preferred the thin crust, bubbly and charred, to the pan personally. High quality and kudos for the processed pork toppings.
You can find Pie Five locations here, and take a gander at the menu (also below)to see what’s in store for you. (pizza, salads, desserts). The company has about fifty units open, and are aiming for five hundred, coast to coast. Wanna own one? Inquire.
Pie Five people? Great job. Great pizza.
Pie Five Pizza Review