When Kacey Montgomery and his wife, Shannon Lincoln, decided to open Pizzeria Sazio, they entered the project with their eyes wide open — staring at a sea of pepperoni in Boise.
“There’s so many places doing pizza,” admits Montgomery, who also owns a Downtown restaurant, Juniper.
“There’s a lot of pub pizza,” he says. “And there’s a lot of pile-everything-on-it pizza.”
But high-quality, Neapolitan-style pizza? Not as ubiquitous.
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That will be the wheelhouse of Pizzeria Sazio, which opens Thursday, Jan. 26, at 1204 S. Vista Ave.
“We really were like, ‘Man, let’s keep it simple, and just get like the best (ingredients) we can and put it on a pizza,’ ” Montgomery says.
It’s an authentic formula that should strike a chord with pizza junkies who remember Casanova Pizzeria. A neighborhood favorite, it occupied that space for years at the corner of Kootenai Street and Vista Avenue. (Most recently, it was Allegrezza’s.)
Montgomery and Lincoln live on the Boise Bench. They see opportunity. “I think Casanova had good pizza,” Montgomery says. “There’s a reason why they were busy a lot. There’s nothing up there (on the Bench), pizza-wise.”
The Sazio menu will highlight a variety of options, ranging from traditional Margherita ($14) to more exotic Spicy Calabrese ($17, Calabrese salami, jalapeno, Calabrian peppers, cipollini onions, red sauce). Bolognese ($16) and fried eggplant parmesan risotto ($16) are among six non-pizza entrees. Beer and wine will be available.
“Mosty Italian wines,” Montgomery adds. “We’re doing a Neapolitan style, and we’re really diligent on sourcing Italian-style meats, like high-end, so we felt like Italian wines really fit that theme.”
The building interior has been remodeled with brick and wood, helping to add an Italian feel, Montgomery adds. “It looks nothing like anything that’s been in there,” he says. “I’m super happy with how it turned out.”
Pizzeria Sazio will aim for an atmosphere that’s not too fancy but not too informal — sort of like the couple’s Juniper restaurant.
“I think it’s a place where you could go on a nice little date, but our whole vibe is neighborhood casual,” Montgomery says. “The idea is to walk a line right there.”
“One thing I’m telling the servers is it’s OK to yell. ‘You guys want another glass of wine?!’ Like fun, loud, Italian kind of an idea.”
Hours: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday. Phone: (208) 344-6600.