Gianna's Patties & Pies deals in just that: burgers and Detroit-style rectangular pizzas.
The restaurant was once home to Tennessee Tavern, and is still run by the same team headed by Grant van Gameren (El Rey, Harry's). The pivot is admittedly a business decision designed to adapt to a more takeout- and delivery-heavy market, simple food embraced during economic downturn the way it has been throughout history.
The stellar patio Tennessee was known for is still out back, lush with jungle plants and strewn with twinkly lights, bright red furniture lending a pop of colour. Sections of benches create their own little pods, seating no more than four to six at a time.
A Spiced Mozza Stuffed Pepper ($11) is a don't-miss starter, a giant crispy breaded pepper stuffed with a gooey mixture of mozzarella and sausage spicing plated in a pool of sweet San Marzano tomato sauce.
Mozzarella sticks with tomato sauce ($8) are equally crunchy and satisfying, but personally I'd go all out and just get the pepper.
Garlic bread ($7) however, is pretty unmissable as well and reasonably priced for what's basically a mini focaccia loaf hit with garlic butter, parm and chives.
A Tomato & Cucumber Salad ($13) is along the lines of a standard pizza shack/souvlaki joint Greek salad without lettuce: tomato, cucumber, onion and olive dressed with lots of olive oil.
The Frico Cheese Burger ($12) is distinguished by its halo of fried mozzarella, a big handful of shredded cheese plopped on top of a relatively thin ground chuck patty right on the griddle so it becomes a crunchy, cheesy chip. On a squishy Martin's roll, it's topped with tomato and pickles plus banana peppers and spicy mayo for a kick.
The Garden Burger ($12) is the vegan burger option, a Beyond Meat patty topped with vegan cheese and mayo plus lettuce, tomato, onion and a chimichurri.
The Old World Pepperoni ($29) Detroit-style pan pizza replicates traditional pies by being cooked in a blue steel treated Lloyd pan ordered from Washington.
A high hydration dough ferments in the pan that it's baked in for about 24 hours, then is pre-cooked before getting topped with a ton of mozzarella that creates a crust around the edges of the pizza (meaning the corners are the best part), then Ezzo pepperoni, then a simple sauce of San Marzano tomatoes and salt on top.
The effect is kind of like eating a spongy, dense focaccia with pizza toppings and an intensely cheesy crunchy crust.
For dessert, a cute little strawberry shortcake is topped with a house strawberry jam and Greek yogurt mixture as well a subtle maple whipped cream and fresh strawberries.