TNT Diner

Tacoma’s newest pizza restaurant is on wheels and it comes with a wood-fire oven

The Margherita pizza from Farrelli’s mobile oven is topped with fresh basil and tomatoes and a squeeze of balsamic syrup.
The Margherita pizza from Farrelli’s mobile oven is topped with fresh basil and tomatoes and a squeeze of balsamic syrup. skidd@thenewstribune.com

Last year, Farrelli’s announced it would open a 300-seat restaurant at Point Ruston this summer.

But then came construction delays.

Instead of a summer opening, the company now hopes for a February opening.

And while it might not yet be the flagship restaurant, Farrelli’s is operating a restaurant now at Point Ruston. It opened in early November.

Parked in front of the future home of the flagship Farrelli’s is a mobile version of the regional restaurant’s pizzerias. The Farrelli’s truck is outfitted with a wood-fire oven from Bellingham’s Wood Stone Ovens, just like its restaurants from Lacey to Maple Valley.

The truck will serve from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. daily through the end of the year and “after we get open in Point Ruston, then we will start looking for opportunities to get the truck out into the community at different festivals and such,” said Clayton Krueger, marketing director for the Lacey-based chain that specializes in what it has coined “Northwest-style pizza.”

The truck menu is brief, with 8 pizza choices that include a combo with pepperoni, sausage, Canadian bacon, green peppers, onions and mushrooms ($10); a meat extravaganza with four kinds of meat ($9); pepperoni ($8); cheese ($7); a pie with two kinds of pepperoni, basil and cream cheese ($9); a pie with chicken sausage, bacon, garlic and alfredo sauce ($9); and a Canadian bacon and pineapple ($8).

Pizzas are personalized size, which I imagined smaller than the 9-inch(ish) pizza that I watched the pizza chef slide onto the baking stone of the wood-fire oven. Six minutes later, a Margherita pie ($8) arrived piping hot with golden edges and a sturdy crust with absolutely no pizza flop (the mortal enemy of all pizza is soggy flop from undercooking). The Margerhita came dressed with shaved Parmesan, fresh basil and diced fresh tomatoes atop melted fresh mozzarella and squiggles of balsamic syrup. It was served on a paper plate.

There’s not much seating nearby other than a handful of benches, so this might be a stand-and-eat adventure.

Expect pies to take 6-8 minutes, or longer if there’s a line. The pies are made to order.

As for the flagship Farrelli’s, it will be the largest in the chain of seven pizza restaurants (Pierce County locations are in DuPont, Tacoma, Parkland, Frederickson and Sumner).

The restaurant will take up about 8,500 square feet with a rooftop bar with fetching water views and room for 50 diners. Downstairs will host another bar. When the weather warms, there are plans for outdoor seating with a view of the adjacent splash park play area that’s directly across from the restaurant.

Farrelli’s Pizza Mobile Oven

Where: Across from WildFin American Grill, 5115 Grand Loop, Tacoma.

Contact: farrellispizza.com/mobile-oven or 360-701-4502.

Hours: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. daily through the end of the year.

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