The first time I ate pesto without caring about having it get stuck in my teeth I was sitting in the intimate and red-upholstered booths beneath the sultry low-lighting of a very well-loved pizza parlor. Nestled between my new Seattle friends, my eyes as wide as the saucers our food was served upon, my college-freshman face, ripe with young energy, could barely contain my joy.
Piecoras. The popular pizza joint that left you satisfied and wanting more all in one bite.
This was the beginning of a long and close relationship. Our courtship continued through my time at Seattle U—pausing for my summers away or my stints of not eating out. But when special occasions came around—birthdays or celebratory dinners—I found myself back among the pepperoni and pesto pies I adored so much. My relationship with Piecoras was steady, reliable, and satisfying.
My love of pizza is only third to my love of popcorn and ice cream—all of which I can find on the Hill, but only one of which I can find at Piecoras. Or should I say could.
Piecoras closed their doors this week. And so I close my heart.
In my slumping despair, I take heart in looking at the long life Piecoras had before I was even thinking about Capitol Hill.
For 33 years the restaurant has been adding joy and improving taste in Seattle. Family owned and family friendly—I don’t have a family to bring there, but if I did, I would—the restaurant was not to be overlooked. Piecoras was one of the Hill’s oldest pizza places where the most recent owner (or ex-owner, I guess) Tim Dijulio was devoted, not only to the business, but to the pizza—something he said is one of his passions.
An interview with Dijulio in the Seattle Eater has him recalling his first experience with the Piecoras:
“My first experience walking into this place was Paulie and Kevin, two longtime Piecora’s employees, standing not behind the register, just standing with two cigarettes hanging out of their mouths and they were like, ‘Hey, how you doing? Just grab a seat and we’ll be with you when we feel like it’ and they had ‘London Calling’ by The Clash playing and in my head I was like, oh man I love this place.”
He isn’t alone.
Crowds flooded the pizza place on their last few days of operation. People will miss the restaurant for many reasons; The Stranger took a poll to track what city folk would miss most. According to their findings, “breakfast bacon” is a big one. Many others commented on the remarkable amount of random rooms and excess seating in the dining rooms—you were always going to find a place there.
The closure of my beloved Piecoras is metaphorical of my senior year. As I approach graduation, pieces of my young life are fading away, like the restaurant. This is sadly symbolic of my college days and youthful naivety coming to a close.
And no, I’m not being cheesy.