Business space is filling up at Shiloh Crossing and come Monday, the bustling retail center will get a bit tighter.
Monday marks the soft opening for Montana's first Your Pie, a Georgia-based brick oven pizza chain. It's situated near the corner of King Avenue West and Shiloh Road in the building that used to house Montana Cycling. The restaurant calls itself one of the only fast-casual pizza joints in the state.
"It's like Chipotle for pizza," said co-owner Robert Meyer.
Rather than ordering at the table with a waiter, customers line up and order their 10-inch pizzas, picking out their toppings and flavors right there on the line. The dough is fresh and hand-tossed and the pizzas are fired in a brick oven that burns at about 600 degrees.
"What sold me was the dough," Meyer said.
By the time customers have grabbed their drinks and sat down, the pizzas are ready and served to their table. The restaurant also serves beer and wine, paninis and gelato.
Meyer calls the soft opening a "dine and donate" event. Your Pie will be open from 11 to 1 and from 5 to 7 on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, giving the new staff a chance to tighten up their skills with real customers.
The pizzas will be free but Your Pie is asking that patrons donate at the restaurant to Head Start Billings. To participate in the soft opening, customers need to register with the restaurant on its Facebook page, Your Pie Billings West.
Your Pie's grand opening will be Friday, where the first 50 pizzas served will be free and after that will sell for $3.14, the numerical value of pi.
The restaurant is a joint venture, co-owned by Meyer and Parker Swenson. Swenson will serve as general manager along with Meyer's wife, Cheryl Meyer. The team owns the exclusive franchise rights to Your Pie for the entire state. They plan to open a second location in Billings and then move to other parts of the state.
"It's going to be good," Meyer said. "We're excited."
It's the latest in a string of new openings at Shiloh Crossing. Much of the business property there is owned by Corning Companies and has been leased out.
"We only have one vacant space available," Corning said.
Corning's latest development was a building along Shiloh Road that now houses a Popeye's Louisiana Kitchen and Five Guys Burger and Fries. Corning recently leased out a corner of the building to an insurance company.
The final 1,500-square foot spot remains open.
"We get a lot of calls on it," Corning said. "We're curating the center to make sure its the right fit."
Five Guys and Popeye's are parking-intensive businesses. The insurance company is good fit because it doesn't require nearly as much parking, Corning said. He's looking for something similar to fill that last spot and he's pleased with how quickly the other locations have filled up.
"It's not bad at all," he said.