Sitting on the side of North Miami Avenue is Piola, a cute restaurant with great outdoor seating. We visited it on Sunday, and with the cool weather that Miami’s been under, the day started off great. There was live music–a soft, acoustic version of all the new and classic hits. Unfortunately, this was as far as the good experience got. My biggest disappointment was that the service was extremely, extremely slow. The restaurant served bread and olive oil on the house; however, we practically had to remind our server about it. About 10 minutes later, the bread arrived and it was cold. A few minutes later the waitress came back around to take our order. We asked for the Carpaccio Nabucco, a Diavola pizza and the Pollo Piola. The carpaccio came first, laid over a bed of arugula. While it was not bad, it definitely needed more seasoning.
We poured a little of the olive oil we had left and threw in some Parmesan on top in our attempt to make it more flavorful (which did help!). Next came the pizza and the chicken. The pizza was thin crust, which I truly liked, and it was overall good. The problem for me was that it did not live up to the expectation of the restaurant’s slogan: “Famous for our pizza.” I was expecting better. (Note: it tasted better the next day in that weird way that pizza does). Finally, the Pollo Piola was not very good. The sauced felt as if it was flour-based–which is not in itself bad, except for the fact that it tasted flour-y. Overall, the atmosphere of the restaurant is great, but the food does not compare. I don’t precisely like to discredit restaurants based on one experience, so I might (eventually) try it again. However, Piola really needs to step it up by then.