Five Years of OTTO: A Month-Long Celebration of Food, Music, and Community

5th-candleWhen OTTO first opened its doors at 576 Congress Street on June 18 of 2009, owners Anthony Allen and Mike Keon had no idea that their humble slice shop serving up their unique take on a culinary staple would evolve into a fast-growing business employing over 240 employees in 10 locations, in 7 cities, in 2 states.

To celebrate 5 great years of food, friends, family, and fun, we’ve got a month of shenanigans lined up, including, but not limited to the following:

Saturday, May 24: OTTO’s 5th Birthday Bash with Elliott BROOD at One Longfellow Square
Pizza, giveaways, beer, wine, and great music, at one of our favorite venues! Come join the party on Saturday. Providing the music will be the band that fueled many late nights at the original slice shop, Canada’s Elliott BROOD, the Juno Award-winning ‘death country’ band whose live shows are “known to be lively affairs” (Washington Post). Also performing: Sympathy & the Lion.
Tickets available at One Longfellow Square

Throughout the month of June: OTTO Throwback Specials
KR1_0768Over the past five years, we’ve changed our menu from time to time. Sometimes we had to make room for new pies by retiring others. This never came without the cries OTTO enthusiasts who bemoaned the loss of their favorite pie.

In June, we’re reviving several of these pies at all locations for a limited time. Keep your eye on our Facebook page or our Twitter account for dates and times.

Friday June 20 & Saturday June 21: The Harmed Brothers LIVE at OTTO (FREE!)
To cap off our birthday month, another OTTO fave from Oregon, The Harmed Brothers, will be doing a two-night residency at our 574 Congress Street dining room. Stay tuned for more info.

OTTO Delivers Pizza 3,158 Miles For Birthday Surprise

We at OTTO are aware that a lot of folks really, really like our pizza.  We have seen all kinds of public declarations that remind us that we’re doing something special. Our beloved Red Sox have placed large orders on consecutive weeks.  New Yorkers have declared OTTO the best pizza they’ve ever eaten.

We haven’t yet, however, received a request to deliver pizza all the way across the United States, no matter the cost. (We do offer free delivery in Portland, by the way!)IMG_0618-1

Joy and Jeff Johnson of Washington, reached out to OTTO to see if there was any way possible we could have a few pizzas delivered for their daughter Devi’s 18th birthday.

The Johnsons discovered OTTO’s Harvard Square location while on a college-hunting trip with Devi, and it was love at first bite. (They nearly missed their plane when they tried to get more pizza on their last day in Massachusetts.)

Since then, Devi and her parents have followed OTTO on Facebook, but simply couldn’t take the posts of pizza pictures any longer (“the daily torture!”).

That’s when the idea was born to have OTTO delivered cross-country as a surprise for Devi’s birthday. Where there’s a will, there’s a way.

It was certainly one of the strangest requests we’ve received at OTTO. Never ones to shirk away from a challenge, we worked out a way to make it happen. On Tuesday, December 18th, OTTO’s 578 Congress Street (Portland) staff hand-tossed, built, baked, and packed two vegetarian pies for overnight shipping. The pies were crafted and packaged with great care to ensure they showed up as fresh, and as eye-pleasing, as possible.

The Johnsons, ever the good sports, promised to send photos of our pies arriving 3,158 miles away. As an added gesture of appreciation, the Johnsons made a donation in OTTO’s name to a New England-based literacy program.

We at OTTO wish Devi a very wonderful birthday, and hope that the pizza is as delicious as she remembers.

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