Review: Piesanos hits all the right notes

Photo courtesy: Tiara Price

A new restaurant has made an appearance, introducing a fresh ambiance that is often absent in Tallahassee’s dining scene. Piesanos Stone Fired Pizza is looking to establish itself as a favorite among your go-to Italian dining destinations. 

The grand opening of Piesanos was Jan. 22, marking its relocation to the Governors Crossing II shopping center, near Publix supermarket at the corner of Blairstone Road and East Park Avenue. This location was previously occupied by Panera Bread before its relocation to Apalachee Parkway, and is now the new home of Piesanos. 

This marks the 13th addition to the Piesanos chain, headquartered in Gainesville. Joel Mills, one of the founders and owners, has said he would like to expand further by possibly opening more locations in Tallahassee.

The owners of Piesanos made some beneficial changes to the layout of the building from the tenant, creating a comfortable space for all dining preferences. With an emphasis on authenticity, this Italian-inspired restaurant showcases artwork reminiscent of traditional Italian art and decor, complete with an extensive wine collection. Piesanos features a full-service bar and decent spacing between tables, making the dining area comfortable for a romantic date night or a lunch date between classes for students. 

While outdoor seating is available, I believe it could benefit from more decor; nonetheless, it still exudes a refreshing ambiance.

My friend Saniyah and I thoroughly enjoyed our lunch-time experience at Piesanos. We decided to start with a frita combo ($11.999), a combination of mozzarella sticks and fried ravioli served with marinara sauce. 

Saniyah did a little happy dance after a satisfying mozzarella stick cheese pull. “The cheese pull is the best part,” she said. “Everything is cooked to perfection, this was a great choice.” 

Saniyah and I were surprised when our server brought us hot, flaky garlic rolls covered in an Italian dressing. The flavor on the rolls was unique and piqued interest as we took turns trying to guess what exactly the flavor was. We were especially delighted when we learned that we could request another serving at no additional charge. 

Photo courtesy: Tiara Price

 Piesanos makes all of its sauces and dough from scratch daily and pizzas are baked in their signature granite stone fired pizza oven. These minor details create a much more authentic taste in every bite, separating Piesanos from other Italian restaurant chains. For my entree, I asked our server for suggestions based on my likes and dislikes and he recommended I try the Napoletana pizza, and I opted for the personal size. Saniyah tried a personal sized BBQ chicken pizza. The personal size pizzas start at $8.99.

We discussed our favorite parts of the meal and we both agreed that our pizzas were cooked to perfection, featuring just the right amount of crispiness. I especially loved the spicy pepperoni featured on the Napoletana pizza. 

Known as a pizza restaurant, Piesanos happily serves other entree options like specialty salads and calzones, specialty pastas like pasta arrabbiata, and a variety of desserts. The customer service I witnessed was warm and welcoming.