Food & Drink » Food Review

Flying Pie Pizzaria


Flying Pie will outlive us all. Long after the bomb drops, this institution will continue to toss the best pies in Boise (though they'll have to add "brains" to the ingredient list to appease their undead clientele). They'll continue to rack up the Best of Boise awards. They'll continue to hire the same chronically casual, friendly staff, who will continue to forget beer orders, yet be so genuinely repentant about it afterward that we'll feel bad for telling them.

But here's the story that doesn't get told enough: When the invasion begins and I'm forced to down my final pint, it will be at Flying Pie. Credit part of this decision to their house brew, Triple Pie Ale, a beefy Abbey-style Belgian that looks like cider, tastes like Chimay and hits like Tyson. The other reason: No other joint in town provides such a glowing overview of beer history to carry with us into the beyond. On the pre-apocalyptic night my vegetarian sidekick and I stopped by, the tap lineup included an otherworldly Edelweiss from 223-year old Schneider Weisse brewery, two brews from the 708-year-old Spaten and the two western beers most likely to join those gods in the Elysian hops fields of beer heaven, Anchor Steam and Deschutes Black Butte Porter.

Then there's the food. For years, Flying Pie has offered a daily promotion wherein they list a name on their reader board, and anyone with that name gets to toss, top and bake their own pizza. I recently had that opportunity, and the jalepeno-anchovy-garlic-gouda-linguica monster I slopped together is not fit to discuss in mixed company. So intead, I'd rather make an announcement. I just tried something new at Flying Pie!

Well, it was new to me at least. Up until my most recent visit, I had never sampled the small selection of calzones--they call them "zappies"--on Flying Pie's immense menu. At most pizzerias, the calzone is a laborious, endlessly doughy undertaking, both to cook and to eat. I worried that the order would squash the DiMaggio-esque streak of perfection Flying Pie had with me. I was wrong.

Flying Pie's sourdough crust, slathered up and grilled to a robust George Hamilton hue, is even better folded up than it is flattened--which is saying something. I ordered the Zambini zappi, which was not quite as spicy as the pizza of the same name but kept the satisfying crunchy onions and strong garlic. Bunnicula ordered the vegetarian zappi, and was pleased with the way it coated the dreaded vegetables on all sides with superior dough and cheese. We celebrated the revelation with another round of Triple Pie, then fell face down onto our plates. When we woke up in the world of the future, Flying Pie was still standing and all was right with the world.

—Nicholas Collias's meals always end in the world of the future.