First Bite: Piada Italian Street Food
Posted by cmh gourmand on September 1, 2010
Piada Italian Street Food debuted to Columbus on September 1st. Owner Chris Doody has the street credibility to purvey street food after years of success at Lindey’s, Bravo, Brio and Bon Vie. The concept has been in the works for over a year and he could be seen on site opening day reviewing and fine tuning last minute details. Although the grand opening was low key, turn out on day one was high.
The restaurant is located in Upper Arlington, not too far from the OSU west campus. In holds a corner spot in a retail strip with a few other restaurants. The exterior is restrained but does have a pick up window (not a drive thru – the restaurant is very clear about that). The comparisons to Chipotle cannot be avoided, visitors and reviewers from now to whenever will most likely compare these two. The models are similar – fast, fresh food with high quality ingredients you can choose. Consider Piada an Italian Chipotle with a twist. A really good twist.
Pictured above is a piada and a (part of) a Piada Bread stick. Pictured below is an unfolded piada.
What is a piada? – It is a thin, Italian flatbread dough, made with organic flour. It is round and slightly larger that a large tortilla. The dough is cooked quickly on a hot grilling stone to crisp and bubble before your eyes. The piada is passed down an assembly line where you can add a variety of ingredients. And the end of the line it is folded over into a burrito style breaded package.
The ordering is broken down into a five step process with signage to guide your path. The first choice is to order a piada, pasta bowl or chopped salad bowl (um, the name of the place is Piada, how was I not going to get that). The next step is decide if you want strands of angel hair pasta added to your piada (sure why not). Then it is on to select a grilled items for the innards: chicken, steak, Italian Sausage, Salmon (yes, really), Italian Meats (Sopressata, mortadella and porchetta…oh yes) or seasonal fresh vegetables. The first two meats are cooked in a blend of rosemary, garlic and lemon. Step three – pick a sauce: Pomodoro, Diavolo, Red Pepper Pesto, Fresh Basil Pesto or Parmesan. This is followed by a choice of salad dressing, vegetables and cheeses. You can make a dagwood of a piada with little effort.
Side options include: a Piada stick – a long (about 1 foot), thin freshly baked bread stick with a variety of fillings served with dipping sauce, artichoke and spinach dip, Calamari, side salad or soup. The final choice is a beverage which include Italian sodas and Peroni beer.
The ordering process is straight forward and fast. The quality of the ingredients is impressive and everything was fresh. The interior is cool, blending the essence of Chiptole and Northstar with a European, IKEA meets rustic feel. The block wood tables in particular caught my eye and I think I may take one home as part of my next carry out order. The motor scooter logo should be fun for Piada play with over time although there are no plans for scooter piada delivery (bummer).
I think Doody and company have a winner here. I definitely enjoyed my first bite.
Piada Italian Street Food
1315 West Lane Ave