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With work started on new E Pike slice bar and ‘pizza testing kitchen,’ Pagliacci celebrates 40 years in Seattle

UPDATE 6/10/2019: Pagliacci has provided this rendering of what the E Pike project will look like

(Image: CHS)

As Capitol Hill-headquartered Pagliacci celebrates 40 years of pizza in Seattle, work is underway to create a new pie and slice bar perfect for research and development next door to the company’s E Pike busy offices.

“This fall, Pagliacci Pizza will open a new store on Pike Street between Crawford and Summit in the building that has long served as Pagliacci’s headquarters,” an announcement of the new project sent to CHS reads. “The restaurant will feature seating, beer and wine, a slice bar, delivery, and a state-of-the-art training facility and pizza testing kitchen.”

Tuesday, the Seattle chain is celebrating its fortieth anniversary by rolling back to 1979 prices for Pagliacci slices: The Original $0.69, Extra Pepperoni $0.79, Hawaiian $0.79, and AGOG $0.97.

Dorene Centioli-McTigue opened the pizzeria “Seattle came to know and love as Pagliacci” in 1979 in the U-District. That location closed last summer as Pagliacci focused its business locations.

It currently operates 25 locations around Seattle. In 2000, the company was purchased by business partners behind Torrefazione Italia who turned the sale of the high-end coffee brand to Starbucks into an investment in Seattle pizza. Pat McDonald and Matt Galvin remain owners of Pagliacci as it moves into its fifth decade.

Pagliacci’s history on Capitol Hill is shorter — but not by much. The chain marked 30 years on Broadway in 2013 in celebration of its 1983 opening there.

But the real core to Pagliacci’s Capitol Hill connection is E Pike where its operations headquarters and the Pagliacci call center are located. Those helpful Pagliacci order takers have worked alongside the company’s prep kitchens where items like salads are chopped and boxed up for distribution.

The overhaul of the headquarters building and the addition of the new Pagliacci restaurant comes as the commissary work is transitioned to other locations. Plans for the project were set in motion in 2016 when Macrina and Pagliacci consolidated their commercial kitchen operations under one roof in Kent. The baked goods chain merged operations with Pagliacci in 2007. Macrina opened its first Capitol Hill location last fall.

CHS first reported on plans for an overhaul of the Pagliacci and Macrina block of Pike almost exactly two years ago. The project was streamlined and simplified — an upper patio was cut, for example — and is now under construction.

With the new project, Pagliacci’s brilliant call takers will remain on E Pike as part of the upgraded call center and headquarters building. Two additional retail spaces are being built as part of the new project but no new tenants have yet been announced.

Floisand Studio Architects designed the project and the buildout of the space is underway by Wilcox Construction, Pagliacci said.

Pagliacci says the new restaurant on E Pike at Crawford Place is planned to be open by fall.

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