After spending about a year gauging the success of their first stab at a higher-end pizza restaurant in downtown Coeur d’Alene, the trio of owners behind Fire Artisan Pizza decided it was time to expand across the state line to Spokane.
The clean-lined eatery debuted a little over a month ago in a prime spot at 816 W. Sprague, right across the street from The Davenport Hotel, in a space that was vacated last year when Moxie restaurant closed.
Patrons of Coeur d’Alene’s Fire will notice that the Lilac City version — also designed by Spokane-based HDG Hurtado + Hissong Design Group — has the same look and feel, with a rustic-meets-contemporary scheme and a cozy yet simple atmosphere. Curving, stark-white chairs contrast against a dark wood floor, exposed brick walls and repurposed barn wood section dividers.
Looming in the restaurant’s back corner is the heart of the establishment and the inspiration for both its namesake and its simplified menu approach: a glowing stone pizza oven.
Everything on Fire’s succinct, half-sheet menu is cooked in the oven’s 800-to-900-degree belly, says co-owner Doug Johnson. It’s so hot that a cheese pizza cooks in two minutes or less, he adds.
While Fire’s menu may be considered small by some standards, what it offers in its 10 mainstay pies ($13-16) varies widely in flavor, texture and ingredients.
“People like the menu because they don’t have to stress over their order,” Johnson says. “They know what their options are, and don’t have to worry that they missed something.”
With the Parma ($16), Fire offers a mix of savory, tangy and rich flavors with four types of cheese, topped with prosciutto and truffle oil. Leaning toward the more classic side is the Pesto ($14), topped with roasted chicken breast, mozzarella, parmesan and a basil pesto, finished with cherry tomatoes.
If diners see something on the menu that’s not to a specific taste, pizzas can be tweaked with extra meat, veggies, cheese or pesto sauce. Fire also features more than 15 rotating daily specials and special seasonally inspired pies, Johnson says.
Complementing the restaurant’s artisan-style pizzas is an extensive beer and wine selection, with 16 beers on tap and about two dozen wines, mostly from Washington state and Italy.
Fire Artisan Pizza • 816 W. Sprague Ave. • Open Sun-Thurs 11 am - 10 pm, Fri-Sat 11 am - 11 pm • 413-1856