We live really close to some really great eateries in Ocala, FL. Though we tend to visit our favorites more often than not, one night this spring, we stopped in at a lively place called Pi on Broadway. Entering into the restaurant is a bit incongruous. The layout makes you stop almost as soon as you enter as you would run right into the bar. It’s a great bar for maybe 10 people though, and you can pull up a stool and order a pizza right from the stone oven. There’s a small seating area downstairs, but the action really happens upstairs on their open-air rooftop bar. They usually have a small band in the evenings and the place is usually full. Be prepared to go to the bar for everything, as the service is sometimes spotty. The bar service is always terrific, even when they’re busy.
The surprising thing for me at Pi was the very tasty menu. I had expected pizzas (they do have a great stone oven!) and typical bar food. Go to Pi’s website and check out the menu. Definitely, not typical! We tried some of the Shareables (other places might call them tapas). We tried the Chorizo Al Vino, Em-Pi-nadas and the caramelized Brussel sprouts. And ended with the Nutella Blondie Sundae. They were all delicious! The Chorizo had just the right spices and savoriness to keep us digging back in the bowl for more. The EmPiNada had the crisp, creamy flavor of the queso blanco but the garlicy yumminess of chimichurri. You may not have eaten Brussel sprouts when your mom may have cooked them when you were a kid, but these are Brussel sprouts all grown up- tangy, sweet and that irresistible, bacon!
I swear I meant to share the Nutella Blondie Sundae with my hubby . . . It just didn’t turn out that way! They had me at Nutella and kept me licking my spoon with the sweet dulce de leche! He might have gotten hurt if he’d tried to get the bowl closer to himself!
This place can sometimes seem like a dive (it’s mostly about the layout – but the bathrooms (!)) when you first walk-in, but give it a try. The menu includes some of the most up-to-date foodie choices and it’s fun to sit on the roof-top and listen to some cool jams.