Two months ago we dropped the news that local favorite pizza food truck The Violet Stone was officially opening a brick and mortar storefront. Overwhelmed with event requests, customer questions and sporadic operating hours, truck owners Dan Fekete and Brittany Costello decided to give their mobile operation a permanent home with a permanent schedule.
Fast forward eight weeks and the now-open restaurant is already wildly popular. This doesn’t surprise us, though, as we knew (even back in March) that “one of the best food trucks of 2023” was set to become “one of the best restaurants of 2023.” Between the spot’s loyal, cult-like following and Dan’s killer culinary skills, the brick and mortar was destined for success before its doors were even painted, let alone open.
Today, we visited The Violet Stone’s new location and found that it serves — just like its truck version — some of the most unique pizza in the ‘Burg.
Bringing unique, creative pizzas to The ‘Burg
“It had always been my dream, since I was a kid, to own a restaurant,” Fekete said. “So when we started getting so many phone calls a day about the truck, we decided ‘let’s just open a restaurant.’ We knew people would be willing to come to us.”
The Violet Stone’s brick and mortar location serves the same distinct pizza as its food truck predecessor. Now, though, the team can make a lot more of it.
“Our pizza is made well-done, old-world-style in a wood oven” Fekete said, “but the crust has more of a bread texture. Our crust is what really sets us apart. I studied French pastry and bread making to come up with our dough.”
The two pies we tried; the creamy, white “Shroom” and the rich, flavorful “Classic”; agreed with that description. They were stretchy and doughy, as an old-world pie should be, but the crust itself was airy and light like a soft-baked European bread. The couple calls the style “Philadelphia technique with Florida local flavor influence,” but we find it distinct from the pizza we’ve had in either of those locations.
As uncategorizable Dan and Brittany’s well-done pizza may be, however, we still love it. Its distinctness is a sweet (and salty) love letter to the equally unique city it calls home.
The Violet Stone’s pizza, we think, is just “St. Pete” pizza.
If you haven’t yet visited The Violet Stone in their brick and mortar location, we highly urge you to stop in soon.
And, when you do, here are some of the “St. Pete”-style pies you can expect:
- The Classic – Burrata, whole milk mozzarella, “the sauce,” basil
- Sticky Fingers – Burrata, mozzarella, blush vodka sauce, chorizo, hot honey, basil
- The Shroom Pie — Gruyere cheese sauce, baby bella mushrooms, rosemary
- The Diablo — Burrata, mozzarella, arrabbiata sauce, sausage, pickled red onions, prima donna cheese
- The Sweetie Pie — Burrata, mozzarella, capicola, candied jalapenos, thin-sliced peaches, hot honey
- The White Truffle — Burrata, mozzarella, no sauce, white truffle oil, basil
- Cheesesteak Sandwich — THIS IS NOT A PIZZA, but is an absolute must try. Featuring sharp provolone (or “whiz,” if you prefer) on a fresh-baked roll (that essentially tastes like a soft pretzel), we 10000/10 recommend ordering one
St. Pete’s newest “go-to pizza joint”
When we asked Dan and Brittany what their vision for The Violet Stone is, the couple replied that they’d simply like to become “St. Pete’s go-to neighborhood family pizza joint.” As genuine and admirable as that aspiration is, however, we believe that statement sells the restaurant short.
The Violet Stone is just as welcoming, affordable and friendly as your “neighborhood pizza joint,” but its pies are much more refined. From its one-of-a-kind dough to its creative toppings, the humble spot is not only changing the St. Pete pizza game; it’s writing it.
The Violet Stone is located at 2134 9th Ave N. To place an evening takeout order, guests can call 727-202–8940, or utilize online platforms Uber Eats and Slice. Menu offerings and specials are posted on the spot’s Instagram and Facebook pages.
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