Just when you thought the city's latest pizza trend was all about the square-shaped, super-thick style with roots in Detroit, Portland is about to get a new East Coast-influenced genre in the former home of Tannery Bar.
Oly's Pizza, which will serve pies with a thin crust inspired by the 13 years owner Jim Fisher spent living in Vermont, is slated to open in August at 5425 E Burnside St.
Before relocating on the East Coast, Fisher previously co-operated a bento restaurant called the Red Fig on Northeast Fremont Street in the early-to-mid 2000s. But Oly's won't be his first foray into the pizza business: After moving to Vermont with his wife, who has family there, Fisher ran a pizzeria called Cockadoodle Pizza Cafe—though he won't be producing a carbon copy of that menu.
"We're still developing and changing what we had in Vermont. It's a different clientele," Fisher says. "But it will be a combination of the East and West Coast."
What you can expect at this point is a thin crust base that won't be left behind on your plate like a sad little heap of kindling. Fisher promises the edges of his pies will be as tasty as the toppings.
"At a lot of pizza places, the pizza bones are saved for the dogs," he says. "That's hard to do with ours—you end up eating the whole thing."
When Fisher and his wife moved back to Portland last November, they contacted a broker to look for an available restaurant to purchase and that's how they learned that the Tannery was on the market. Right now they're in the process of deep cleaning and picking out paint colors—both the inside and outside are due for a fresh coat.
As for the name Oly's, it's a tribute to the couple's first dog—a stray German shepherd they found near a gas station and ended up adopting. Having just toured Olympia Brewing a few days earlier, the two decided to dub him "Oly" after the now-shuttered landmark.