Let Your Taste Buds Fly Into Orbit at Smoking Monkey Pizzaby Mary Clymer on July 28, 2020
Gourmet Pizza that is out of this world
Taking that first bite of a slice of pizza should always be an out of this world experience. At Smoking Monkey Pizza in Renton you know your taste buds will launch into outer space with one bite. Whether you decide to eat-in or take-out, there’s only one place to go in downtown for truly gourmet pizza.
Prepare for a tasty Journey
I start with the Pear Salad. A fresh mix of spring greens topped with sliced pear, Gorgonzola, toasted Cashews, Basil, and Romano, all tossed in their house lemon vinaigrette. Perfect to get my taste buds going, yet not too filling so I am sure to save room for my favorite pizza, The Goatsmary!
The Goatsmary has a chili oil base instead of the typical marinara. They for-go the usual Mozzarella topping for Provolone. Add goat cheese, rosemary, roasted cashews, and parmesan cheese. The menu recommends adding Salami, but I say why mess with perfection.
Insider tip! Go ahead and order the large. You’ll be happy for the left-overs later when you’re looking for a midnight snack. Also good for lunch on the following day.
They use a wood stone oven with the ability to heat up to 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit. So when your pizza cravings strike, there’s no better place to head than this eatery. Offering fun and flavor that will delight the entire family.
Taking the Theme into Orbit
Of course, the atmosphere is as unique as the pizza. Thought the entire place you will see rare pieces of art all space and monkey themed. Huge paintings of monkey astronauts smoking cigars and vintage metal sci-fi rockets fill the space. Checking out the decor is part of the fun at Smoking Monkey Pizza.
Walking into this universe is eye candy from the moment you enter the door. Families can usually be seen enjoying a meal and a smiling host welcomes you in. If you choose to dine in the original footprint of this establishment, you can watch pizza’s being prepared and made. There are a couple of bar stools that line the kitchen area where you can usually catch someone sitting at, enjoying a beer on draft, while waiting for their to-go order. A small chalkboard above the hostess stand listed daily specials and local beer on draft. All this action in a small space creates an energy that is hard to not get behind.
Along with staff bustling around, the owners can usually be spotted greeting their favorite regulars, coaching and chatting with staff, working on some housekeeping, or a host of other responsibilities the local restaurant owner deals with on a day to day basis.
Right now things are weird everywhere you go. Smoking Monkey has started doing delivery during COVID-19 to keep all their beloved customers and staff as safe as can be. They are open for dining, but seating is limited, so if you do decide to order pick up, take a moment to appreciate the ambiance. If you are more concerned about physical distancing, you can check out their menu online and if you're in the Renton area, they will even deliver to your door.
As if the atmosphere and pizza weren’t enough, there are a variety of other options too. Appetizers, Sandwiches, Pasta dishes, Calzones, and Dessert. Clearly, owners Sean and Ping Ping Bullock were looking to be the coolest kid on the block when they bought this place just over 6 years ago.
Located at 613 S. 3rd Street, just across from Piazza Park in downtown Renton, this tiny space wasn't big enough for their vision. They promptly rented the space next door and more than doubled their square footage. Working with the name Smoking Monkey they began to create a world that incorporated sci-fi into the theme.
Then to make it even harder to resist they added a lunch buffet. Now from 11-2, you can head in for pizza by the slice. But be warned, with so many awesome choices you will be faced with making a tough decision. The decision to decide what to eat.
After an afternoon stroll along the Cedar River or picking up fresh produce at the Renton Farmers Market stop in. Enjoy local beer, put in a to-go order, and enjoy the scenery. The ambiance is engaging, the owners are sweet as pie, and the food speaks for itself.
By the time you’ve come back down to earth after your Smoking Monkey adventure, you’ll be dreaming of what to try next. The flavors at this Renton eatery are truly otherworldly.