Even though the Charleston location of DeSano Pizza Bakery is in its infancy — so much so that the establishment is currently just a skeleton of gray walls and window cutouts — we were excited to take a sneak peek at this brand new addition to the neighborhood. From what we could tell, owners Scott DeSano and Rory Brown have a gem of an idea on their hands. Think BYOB (wine and beer only) and chomping down on a pie 80 seconds after your order is placed.
DeSano operates a successful DeSano Pizza Bakery in Nashville, Tenn., and is diving headfirst into the Charleston food scene, taking what he’s learned from his Nashville store and applying it to his 94 Stuart St. location, between Morrison Drive and Meeting Street.
“With our pizza,” DeSano says, “you don’t get that sag as you do with American pizza. It’s truly an artisan product.” Desano Pizza Bakery may very well be the closest a Charleston pizza lover can get to Naples without actually leaving the Lowcountry. All of their ingredients are set to be imported from Italy, with the exception of produce.
DeSano led a group around the eatery, opening in mid to late August, emphasizing that the focus is on the pizza and not the restaurant. The no-frills layout is sectioned into three rooms: an entry room, a viewing room, and a dining room.
Customers will place their orders in the entry room and move through the viewing room, which exhibits DeSano’s ingredients, and then into the dining room where their order will be delivered.
Observing the pizza-making process is a part of the customer’s eating experience. The dining room is where the pizza will be prepped and pulled and cooked in one of three massive 6,000-pound ovens imported straight from Naples. The pies will then be brought to the table on a cookie sheet, ready to be consumed.
A big screen TV tuned into soccer matches will offer diners a quick distraction from their meals. For seating, DeSano and Brown plan to provide a number of large community tables and high top tables in the larger room, while there will be two community tables in the viewing room.
“The energy is meant to be communicative,” says DeSano. Referring to his Nashville branch, he says that the energy level is “palpable when it’s popping.”