By Colette Fitzpatrick
Getting the extended group of friends together is harder and harder as the years go by due to responsibilities, work, blah, blah, barf. I don’t think we’ve all been in one room in over a year. However, the easiest way to try and coax the majority along is with food; we have big mouths and appetites.
So, my bestie and I decided to try and plan a group dinner during the week. I was tasked with finding a venue that was centrally located, not too pricey and somewhere we hadn’t been before…no pressure, right?
But, eventually, I decided on Pi: the new pizza place on George’s Street that was being lauded in reviews as the new best place for a pie in Dublin.
Pi is a no frills, wood-fired pizza joint that has a relatively curated menu of eight pies and a decent beer and wine list.
Castle House, 10, 73 – 83 South Great George’s Street, Dublin
With a couple booths, some tables and a counter facing the window with around five stools, this is a slick operation with little nonsense involved. The coloured glasses and jugs, graphically-gratifying menu, Sardinian beer bottles, perfect pizzas, shiny tiled countertop and beautiful Dublin as a backdrop are all photogenic but, unlike many new Dublin additions, this place is not all visuals with little actual substance.
Pizzas come out quick, perfectly sliced and not so burning hot that you can’t dig right in. Tables are quickly turned over – which is good as the hype means that there is a queue even on a Wednesday and that’s rare in Dublin – and service is snappy but it’s perhaps a wee bit too hectic at times. My friend was brought a beer he didn’t order and the waitress ran away so quickly to do other things that he spent the next ten minutes trying to flag someone down to return it. I feel for this though, they’re clearly run off their feet. Likely something that will die down in time as the first rush of curious customers calms somewhat, it does mean, however, that you’re not going to get the world’s most attentive hospitality.
The pizzas themselves are what really matter and these are good pizzas; slightly charred on the edges with chewy, bouncy crusts, dripping in cheese. I got the Margherita which was around eleven quid and a decent feed; enough so that I had half packed up for later. The Sardinian beer, Ichnusa, that I got with it was a perfectly light and delightful accompaniment.
The loud music and echo-friendly minimalist space makes it hard for a granny like me to hear people, which is a tad frustrating. However, the pizza itself is great, IMHO and I do love having enough for a doggy bag to bring home, especially when said food tastes just as good reheated for lunch the next day. There are kinks in the machine, no doubt, but it is a new flavour-of-the-month so maybe a return visit in a while is needed to properly evaluate the sitch.
Bottom line though? There will be a return visit.