Sydney McCabe | The Duquesne Duke
Attention all Milano’s faithful: there just may be a new rival in town. V3 Flatbread Pizza recently opened on Fifth Ave. Located just outside Market Square, the restaurant is sure to sway your allegiance with its prime location, “create your own” style pizzas and college-friendly prices.
When you first walk in to V3, you are met by the dimly lit but friendly atmosphere. Indie pop music plays in the background, but it is mostly drowned out by the chatter of those on their lunch break from shops and offices downtown. The storefront offers outdoor patio-style seating, indoor standing room for those on the run and tables upstairs for busier times.
Signs on the walls direct you through an almost assembly-line experience as you personalize your dough, sauce and toppings for the perfect flatbread. The entire process, from ordering to receiving your creation takes about 10 minutes. After preparing your custom pizza, the servers place the pizza on an oven conveyer belt, much like those for toasting bagels and bread in Hogan, although much more efficient in quickly baking your pizza to a slightly browned bliss.
As a New Jersey native growing up with pretty high pizza standards, I was skeptical about how good V3 could be. It’s pretty hard to beat, let alone match, the deliciousness of Rosa’s and Joe’s Famous in Manhattan.
And yet I uttered a genuine “wow” at the first bite of my creation. The combination of multigrain dough, traditional red sauce, fresh mozzarella, fresh baby spinach, smoked bacon, oregano and a topping of shaved parmesan rivaled Manhattan’s bests. And even more, the originality of the flatbread style and “make your own” feature of V3 creates a unique experience incomparable to anything else in Pittsburgh.
V3 offers multigrain and gluten free options as well as locally farmed vegetables and more than twenty organic topping options so you can make a healthier treat if you so desire. If you’re not a total pizza fan, V3 also offers Mediterranean and Caprese salads, each of which only costs $6. However with unlimited toppings, the extra two dollars for a pizza is worth a try.
If your creativity isn’t flowing when you stop in for a visit, V3 also offers what they call “Our Creations,” an assortment of combinations ready for order. These flatbreads are also $8 and include options such as the “Chop Shop,” which features traditional red sauce, fresh mozzarella, salami, pepperoni, sausage, bacon, shaved parmesan and oregano oil drizzle, or the “Sunny Side Sausage” comprised of traditional red sauce, fresh mozzarella, sausage, spinach, cage-free eggs, shaved parmesan and red pepper chili oil drizzle.
After you devour your pizza, you can wrap up your V3 experience with their mouth-watering dessert option: a Belgian waffle with pearl sugar — which legend says was the famed favorite treat of an 18th century Prince Bishop of Liège — smeared with Nutella, making it every hungry college student’s dream, especially since it’s only $5.
V3 is the perfect alternative to pizza at the Incline, or if you want something other than Milano’s. The flatbreads are enough for one person and can be deliciously tailored to order. For someone who considers pizza a staple, V3 is officially my Pittsburgh go-to for a New York City-esque treat!