Federal Galley Gets a Mini-Makeover

October 1, 2018



Tucked away in a back corner of Nova Place sits Federal Galley, sister store of Smallman Galley and second local location for the Galley Group. The changing seasons bring some menu changes for both the bar at Federal Galley, as well as the Detroit-style pizza in-house resident, Michigan and Trumbull. Moxie sat down with both Federal Galley bar manager Cat Cannon, as well as co-owner of Michigan and Trumbull, Kristen Calverley, to get some more info on the new items they have to offer for guests. 


The bar at Federal Galley has released an entirely new cocktail menu, the style of which is inspired by an old high school yearbook, complete with old photos of all of the bar's employees. Cat and Galley Group bar director Tim Garso created the first and only menu the bar has ever had, prior to ever having a staff. “What was really awesome when we were at Smallman was that all of those menus happened really organically and were also a product of those staffs,” she explained. The goal was to have a themed menu like Smallman does, but done in a way that the staff could be involved in the process of making it. The new menu was also a way to create a guest-bartender interaction which otherwise might be hard to create considering how large and busy the place is, and how little seats there are at the bar itself. “Why we love doing this is because we love taking care of people, but when we are three [people] deep, we can’t do that. [The yearbook idea] was our diabolical plan to create a guest and bartender interaction without them ever having to speak.” Cat also mentioned that even though she and Garso both separately came up with the yearbook idea, she attributes the creation of the menu entirely to the bar team at Federal. 


To create this menu, each bartender was tasked to give Cat a classic cocktail that meant something to them, whether it be a drink that changed the way they thought about cocktails, one from an important time in their life, a personal favorite, or one that they really enjoy making. She then teamed up with each employee to find ways to incorporate their stories into their cocktails, making it unique and special to each person. The differences could be anything from a change of liquor or ingredients, special glassware, or even a garnish. "They did such a dope job. I knew the trickiest part would be balancing a menu, making sure there's not like 85 cosmos on it. But they really took this, as kitschy as it might have seemed, they all ran with it uninhibitedly." When asked if Cat had a favorite, she said there was no way she could begin to choose, because there is definitely something for every mood on there. She really wanted the barbacks to be included as well, as they play such a vital role in ensuring the bar runs smoothly. Each barback was given a chance to pair their own boilermaker (a beer and shot pairing, if you're like me and had no idea what a boilermaker is). 


Photographed below are the cocktails "Joey Two Times," left, created by Joanna Krause, and "No Mistakes, Just Happy Accidents," right, created by Sophia Milinkovic.


Michigan and Trumbull have also made some changes to their menu, some by popular demand.


Detroit-natives Kristen Calverley and Nate Peck are co-owners of the delicious pizza place which has been a resident of Federal Galley since open. If you are unfamiliar with their Detroit-style pizza, it's a square, deep-dish pan pizza cooked without red sauce, which is dolloped on top of each slice right before serving. They also serve a variety of white pizzas, some where instead of red sauce, it is topped with garlic oil or ranch. Like the bar, they've had the same menu for the last 11 months, and felt it was time for a change. "I realized, aside from our pizza features, we’ve had the same menu since we opened. And since the vegan pizza wasn’t selling as well as it could have, I thought there was room to throw on a solid-selling pizza feature in place of the vegan," Kristen said. That solid-selling, crowd-favorite pizza feature is the McLovin', a pizza inspired by a Big Mac, including beef, cheddar, sesame seeds, shredded lettuce, onions, and secret house sauce. Believe me when I tell you, this pizza is worth the over-stuffed feeling you get after eating it. The McLovin' has replaced the old vegan pizza, which has been modified to give vegans a little more say in what they would like. With a red sauce base, vegan customers have their choice to add any vegetables they would like, and the final product is topped with dressed arugula after cooking. The price has also been lowered from $14 to $8.


The old antipasto salad has also been replaced with a salad that hits home for local customers: the Yinzer Salad is a mixed greens salad tossed in the house cilantro ranch, with cheddar, bacon, tomatoes, and crispy seasoned waffle fries on top. It's only been on the menu for a couple of weeks but has been selling like it's an old favorite soon to sell out.


Brunch options have changed as well. No longer offering the weekly special waffle, the old brunch pizza has been redone to offer a version that appeals to brunch-goers with a sweet tooth or savory side. The sweet brunch pizza is a mozzarella cheese base, with pear, goat cheese, honey and pistachio, while the savory option has mozzarella, bacon, cheddar and a delicious fried egg that sits right on top, just waiting to be dug into. 


Pictured above is a half and half pizza, part Linwood Leek (a feature not on the permanent menu) and part McLovin'.


These many changes were completely spontaneous for M&T but offer something new for old regulars and new pizza fans alike. "I don't know if change is in the air, but it does make sense seasonally for us to change," Kristen commented on unplanned makeovers for both her restaurant as well as the bar, which launched on the same day. "I was getting a little restless about the menu and was worried about customer perception," she said. Kristen is hoping these changes will jumpstart business as they approach a slow season in the industry, and so far her hopes have proven to work!


Come into Federal Galley any day of the week, with Happy Hour from 4 to 6:30pm Monday through Friday. Read through the new bar book, find your new favorite cocktail, strike up a conversation with the bartender who made it, and fill your tummies with some of the best pizza you can get in the 'burgh!


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