If you haven't visited the breezy, artistic campus known asMiami Iron Side
, you're missing out on a lovely little respite from mainstream Miami. This creative mecca is home to a lineup of right-brained tenants, from architects to hair salons to, most recently, a wood-fired pizza joint.
There's no better place for a vegan lunch -- with vegan dessert, to boot.
The spot, officially titled Iron Side Pittzza, was launched by the folks who run the complex. When the spot was vacated by a previous tenant, they decided to offer edibles to their tenants and visitors.
The glass-enclosed eatery is equipped with a wood-fired pizza oven, and the pies themselves are crafted by Giovanni Gagliardi, a pizza maker from Naples, Italy.
In itself, the crust -- a chewy, flavorful treat -- is vegan. There are six specialty creations on the menu, including the standard margherita, with tomato, mozzarella and basil ($12) and the veggie-heavy melanzane ($12), with zucchini, eggplant, peppers and tomato. You can also make your own pie, choosing from topping options like tuna, olives, and eggplant. They have a gluten-free crust option, too, for an extra $4.
They have regular cheese for the average eater, but vegans have the option of choosing Daiya (a dairy-free shredded alternative) for an extra $3. I sampled the funghi pie -- mushrooms, tomato, Daiya, olives and oregano. The tomato sauce is slightly sweet and intensely flavorful. A newbie to vegan pizza, I was pleasantly surprised.
The focaccia, too, is a treat. I tried the di casa variety, topped with fresh mixed greens, feta, and grape tomatoes. This can also be served vegan or regular.
Also on the menu: salads, bruschetta, pitta, and calzone elections. Prices range from $7 to $12, so lunch here won't break the bank.
And, if you need a sweet treat to round out your meal, the House of V is right next door. Valentina Cordero's vegan cupcakes make the perfect finish to a delicious meatless meal. While the little locale was originally pegged a pop up, it's still going strong.
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There are tables and couches and chairs strewn throughout the courtyard, so there are plenty of places to sit and wile away an afternoon under the palms. I can't imagine a better spot to spend a lunch hour.
Iron Side Pittzza is open Monday through Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. at 7580 NE 4 Ct, though hours may vary depending on demand.
Follow Hannah on Twitter @hannahalexs.