Peace o’ Pie
487 Cambridge St (at N Beacon and N Brighton)
Allston, Massachusetts 02134
Owner: Eric Prescott
Is this your first restaurant? Yes
What has been your greatest professional success and your biggest setback?
Greatest professional success so far was our big launch in 2009. Biggest setback was hiring a manager who was not a good fit for the position.
What’s your favorite dish on the menu?
I like them all quite a lot, but I think I lean toward our barbecue items, mainly the BBQ Chik’n Pizza (add kale) and the BBQ Chik’n sandwich. That said, having had some of these dishes a number of times, I attend to prefer putting my palate in the hands of our lead chef, Jesse, who has always come up with a delicious pizza or sandwich for me.
What’s the most popular appetizer on the menu? We really just have the Basic Breadsticks and the Cheesy Bread, with the Daiya-topped Cheesy Bread winning out by a large margin.
Most popular entrée? We have about four specialty pies which are almost equally popular: Buffalo Chik’n, BBQ Chik’n, The EP, and The MD. It’s too soon to say with sandwiches, which haven’t been on the menu as long. Their sales are still growing.
Most popular dessert? We change up our desserts daily, though our cinnamon rolls are quite popular at brunch on Sundays (featured in photo above).
How often do you change your menu items? Do you have daily or weekly specials? How do you choose those specials?
As mentioned above, desserts change daily. The other menu items are pretty much fixed for now, though we always leave open the possibility of expanding the menu. We offer two different slices o’ the day, which change daily, and we offer a weekly sandwich special, too (featured in photo above). Generally they are chosen by the chef on duty that day.
Do you have gluten-free, soy-free, and sugar-free options on your menu? What are a few of those?
Gluten-free – We have offered a gluten-free pizza for a while now, but only one night a week.
Soy-free – The vegan cheese we use, Daiya, is soy-free, as are the majority of our toppings. Some of the faux meats are soy products, like our chik’n.
Do you use eco-friendly packaging? What else do you do to reduce your environmental impact?
We do. All our take-out containers and utensils are recyclable or compostable. We have a compost and recycling pick-up, dramatically reducing the amount of waste we produce. We use CF bulbs dining area and kitchen, and we used environmentally sensitive materials when remodeling the place, including zero VOC paint, a PaperStone (recycled paper) countertop, bamboo paneling on the counterfront, and ceiling tiles made from 65% recycled materials.
Do you have any advice for those wanting to start a vegetarian/vegan restaurant?
I’d start by saying don’t open a vegetarian restaurant. With regard to a vegan restaurant, there’s so much advice one could give, but, in a few words, starting and running a vegan restaurant can be more expensive than you expect, and it is definitely all-consuming. Be prepared to have virtually no life outside the restaurant until (if) you can bring on someone to mind the shop for you. Be mindful of cultivating customers who are not vegan. You cannot sustain your restaurant with only vegan customers. There just aren’t enough of us yet.
Thanks Eric for sharing about your restaurant Peace o’ Pie with us! If you are a restaurant that would like to participate in our Restaurateur Interview Series please let us know!