biga in kirtland

I believe I posted awhile back how much I love Marotta’s pizza in Cleveland Heights. Seriously – one of the better pies in town. However – I will likely not go back there. Not because our pizza was bad. In fact, my reasoning has nothing to do with the food. It has to do with my kids. Actually, kid – I only had one at the time I believe.

You see, on our last visit to the Cleveland Heights restaurant we had our daughter with us. It was barely 5 p.m. and we were the only ones in the restaurant. A restaurant that is known for pizza… a dish that screams family night out. They made it quite clear that they do not appreciate children in their restaurant and spent the rest of our meal giving us dirty looks and making us feel unwanted.

Don’t get me wrong – if at any point any of my darling little daughters starts turning their head Exorcist-style and belting out one of their favorite blood-curdling melodies, we’re outta there! I don’t want to hear your kids scream (non-stop) when I’m out and I don’t expect you to put up with mine. But just because I have kids does not mean I’m about to throw in the towel to chains (though I do have a new appreciation for Panera’s mac-n-cheese…. oh my!). No. Instead, we dine like blue hairs, come prepared, have our escape plan ready and bolt at the first sign of trouble. This has been our “new normal” since we had a family and take them along. And 90% of the time – it’s great and we have ZERO problems from restaurants, chefs, servers, diners, etc. Well, with that one exception…

Ok – back to the main reason for this post. This “boycott” of said restaurant led us on a quest to find a new family pizza joint. Lots of good places, for sure. But throughout this trial period, people kept telling me to try Biga in Kirtland. And nearly two years later, I am happy to report we finally did!

We didn’t have reservations, but luckily for us we were there right at 5 so they could easily accommodate. And unlike another pizza restaurant, they didn’t give us any grief for coming in with our minis. In fact, they were super cool to them and immediately passed out an Etch-a-sketch for each. Score! This was quickly followed up with kids drinks and an offer of bread to help tidy them over. In other words, they were incredibly accommodating and friendly towards my daughters. Bonus points.

If you haven’t been there, it’s a small, simple but charming and warm space with a tiny open kitchen and views of the wood-burning oven. It was nice. The kind of place where everyone seemed to know everyone and could likely tell it was our first time.

We ordered a side of meatballs, a plain pizza for the kids and fresh sausage for us (though I tried hard to convince my husband to try the fall pizza with apples and bacon. That’s the one drawback about pizza… you pretty much have to share and be in agreement).

Ok, here it goes: we loved it! Our pizzas were, in fact, wonderful! Great crust, texture, sauce – everything. This was a well-made pie. I will admit I enjoyed the meatballs better at Three Palms, but this was a good pizza and well worth the trip to Kirtland (though truthfully not that far from us in Chagrin).

So there you have it: Biga – good pizza pie, and very family-friendly! Oh – and one other tip before you go (and hopefully you go) – they do not have an alcohol license. But feel free to bring your own beer or wine. They’ll gladly open and serve. We saw plenty of people walk in with their own wine. Which personally, I think is fun.



  1. melaniebauer
    Posted October 9, 2013 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

    Our families sound very similar!  We just moved to the area three months ago and went to Dewey’s in Cleveland Heights this past weekend for our first pizza adventure.  I’m putting Biga on our next to try list. :)

  2. EatDrinkClev
    Posted October 10, 2013 at 9:06 am | Permalink

    It’s been on our list of places to try for ages! Gotta get there one of these days. The fall pizza sounds YUMMY! Ready for another trip? :)

  3. jillsommer
    Posted October 10, 2013 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

    You might have been there the same night I was. They were putting away some Etch-a-Sketches as we were seated. The fall pizza is DELICIOUS. That’s the one I ordered. I also really like the Sweet Sausage one after tasting all of my friends’ pies. And I second the recommendation for Dewey’s in Cleveland Heights. It is super family friendly and even has a window where the kiddies can watch them throw the dough. I got a weird, snotty vibe from Marotta’s when I was there too. Not too keen to go back. Anyway, I agree. Biga is awesome.