Flying Pie Pizzaria hosts employer groups, plans new Boise store

adutton@idahostatesman.comSeptember 13, 2013 

Flying Pie Pizza employee Brett Buckendorf pulls a fresh Pesto Primavera pie from the oven at the Fairview Avenue store in Boise. FILE PHOTO

DARIN OSWALD — doswald@idahostatesman.com Buy Photo

Visit a Flying Pie Pizzaria on a Wednesday night, and you'll find a parking lot full of employees — not just the restaurant's, but those of Dutch Bros., Saint Alphonus Health System or even Pizza Hut.

For about 12 years, the pizza company based in Boise has offered customers a chance to make their own 10-inch pizzas for free. But now Flying Pie sets aside Wednesdays for customers with a specific trait — been to Italy, work at Saint Al's — with a few catches. Customers must bring something that proves they fit the day's trait. They must don a hat (the goofier the better). They must make the pies themselves and have fun.

The hours for "It's Your Day" specials are 2 to 4 p.m. and 8 to 10 p.m.

Owner Florian Penalva said the workplace theme days are the most popular, drawing up to 40 people to a restaurant.

And when they invite workers from Dominos or Pizza Hut, "We always get a lot of delivery drivers," Penalva said.

The company doesn't charge employers for the events. Flying Pie has an interest in cultivating relationships with businesses — who else orders 10 pies for lunch? — but Penalva said Flying Pie also wants to "give back" in the form of free food and a unique experience.

This has been a big year for Flying Pie, with the opening of a new Meridian store on Main Street just north of where it meets Meridian Road. That restaurant will start offering delivery this month.

"The next step for us will be Boise, by BSU," Penalva said. "We are actively looking for a location that will fit our concept."

That's the area where Flying Pie was born in the late 1970s. The target date for its return to the Boise State University neighborhood is 2014.

"No promise," Penalva said. "But we're working on it."

Audrey Dutton: 377-6448

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