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Southlake Style

Humble Pie

Jul 31, 2014 03:23PM ● By Dia

Many of you are familiar with the Fireside Pies location nearby in Grapevine, another outpost in Tristan Simon’s Consilient Hospitality food empire. But the location in Fort Worth’s vibrant West 7th mixed-use development, currently in the midst of being rebranded as Thirteen Pies, offers not only a different approach but a distinctive menu.

The soon to be called Thirteen Pies was always intended to be more of a sister restaurant that offered lunch dining options and an expanded menu featuring locally sourced ingredients, according to kitchen manager and longtime Consilient Group chef, George Ortega. Ortega noted that Tristan Simon wanted to branch out from the original Fireside Pies concept when he opened the restaurant in Fort Worth. Even the décor both inside and out reflects a sparser, minimalist ethos compared to other Fireside Pies locations. This location has always featured twelve fixed pizza “pies” on the menu year round with a thirteenth pie that features the chef’s choice for a seasonal pie using ingredients available only at certain times of the year. Hence the new name, Thirteen Pies. Also, Ortega shared that the crust preparation is different, and there are more varied cheeses used in their dishes.

Image titleTwo other outposts of Thirteen Pies are currently in development in Houston, and Atlanta. Chef Ortega informed me that he would be relocating to the Atlanta area in a matter of weeks to join the team in opening the location there.

Welded metal letters housing dark orange neon tubes spelling out Fireside Pies are all that mark the location of the restaurant. Inside, the ceiling over the dining areas is dominated by the same wood slats that form the backdrop for the host stand with custom z-shaped lighting fixtures hovering over a long line of booths along the windows while the ceiling over the bar and the open kitchen highlights strategic pinpoint lighting and exposed concrete columns. Along another wall are the seasonal specials on a large chalkboard with another small chalkboard to the side noting the thirteenth pie currently available for order.

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Having dined at this location several times before, I knew that I was definitely going to order a pasta dish that utilizes fresh, house-made pasta along with a pie for the meal I was sharing with my dining companion. The pasta selections are where this location has always differed from other Fireside Pies. We chose the Bolognese, which combine tender egg noodles that easily hold the rich, meaty Bolognese sauce in every bite. It is a simple but an incredibly well prepared dish that could put similar dishes from Italian focused restaurants to shame. The other area that this location differs from its sister restaurants is the selection of pies. The other Fireside Pies locations all offer the same pie selection that feature local ingredients. This location has a much more innovative take on the combinations of ingredients and flavors for its menu. We chose the Spicy House-Made Pork Sausage pie made up of the oil-rubbed crust, roasted red peppers, roasted onions and scamorza (a fancy name for smoked mozzarella) to which we added fresh yellow market tomatoes added at the end of the baking time for the pie. The thin, crispy on the outside yet chewy on the inside crust holds it’s own against the vibrant flavors of this pie. Perfectly cooked, it was a home run.

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It’s a must to finish off your meal with one of their seasonal desserts. If it is available, the Lemon Mascarpone Semifreddo (a semi-frozen ice cream) will do nicely. Our server, Neto, described it as similar to a deconstructed cheesecake. It arrived in a small glass bowl with squares of the semifreddo laid atop one another with lemon curd in between each layer and a pistachio crumble throughout. It is cold, light and fresh. An ideal summer dessert!

As Southlake Style’s foodie fellow, James is passionate about discovering unique dining experiences in the DFW area by night while crafting high impact marketing strategies by day as founder of Audacious Think. A native Oklahoman, he now considers the hometown of his beloved Dallas Cowboys to be his own as well.