Monday, June 2, 2008

Where's the Good Pizza?

I usually order pizza every Friday. Where I come from, Domino's is the pizza of choice. It is good, but more than that, it is good and inexpensive. But every time I come to Stafford, my family reminds me that Domino's doesn't make the grade. Stubbornly, I have ordered it multiple time since I've been back here. And I have finally learned my lesson.

Half of the time, Domino's is fine. The other half of the time, it just plain sucks. When it sucks, it is because they decide to put only enough cheese on the pizza, to say that it has cheese on it. Mostly, there is red sauce visible. Often times, it is over baked (as is the cheesybread), looks a little stale (even though it has recently come out of the oven), and the bubbles in the crust take up half of the slices. I have had to return the pizza on multiple occasions. For some reason, I forget to check it before I leave the store. No, its because I expect my pizza to be the way it should be. But their coupons have enticed me to return again and again.

I think I am officially Papa John's now, which means I have to save my money. I don't, haven't, and can't frequently order Papa John's because it is expensive. Two pizzas for $21, wtf? I remember when they first came to Stafford, it was as affordable as the next pizza. Now, their coupons aren't discounts at all. But it tastes so damn good. I also noticed that it gets me full rather quickly. And not everyone can stand that sweet taste, which will also keep me from ordering it frequently because it gets kinda old.

Growing up, Pizza Hut used to be the expensive pizza. It was like the "I have money to throw away and this is the best on the market" type of pizza. We always ordered deep dish because the crust had that right amount of bread and crisp. Nowadays, Pizza Hut is a good price, too (they finally caught on) . Their pizza also gets me full rather quickly. It has always been greasy as hell. But I don't order it too often because of the distinctive taste that gets old to my taste buds.

Little Caesar's Pizza was once located in Aquia Towncenter, on a corner, by what used to be Dairy Queen. I thought it was the greatest flavor and it was the poor man's pizza because it was a buy one get one free deal. We ate there like we had stock in it, but we must've been the only ones because they went out of business. I never understood that because it was always crowded. And there are still Little Caesar's in other states. Its not the same though, but it is definitely the cheapest pizza on the market, quality and monetarily.

Still thinking "back in the day," Sam's used to be the cheap pizza of choice also--but more for large functions. Every time we had something at school, they ordered Sam's. It was not very flavorful. It was just pizza....cheese, sauce, and dough. I haven't been there in the last decade so perhaps they have changed.

Today's school functions are held at Cici's Pizza. I don't love their pizza, it'll just do. Besides, everyone loves a buffet.

When I worked in D.C. several years ago, I became a lover of California Pizza Kitchen. I call it "the working class" pizza. It is expensive--$10 for a pizza the size of something you'd find in the grocery freezer section, for one person. I suppose they can get away with it because it is "gourmet" and you can order it any way you like it. Their veggie pizzas are even tasty. A few years ago, they began selling the small pizzas at the grocery store ($5). They were hard to find at first. Now you can get a larger size, thin crust, and for the same price.

My father introduced me to what I think is the best pizza in town. I am a big fan of New York style pizza--fairly thin, wide slices, foldable and greasy. Vinny's Italian Grill puts a giant smile on my face and heaven in my belly. It costs a pretty penny, but it is always exactly what I am looking for. However, it is best to eat it on the day you buy it only. The warmed-up pizza quality is sub par in comparison.

Anyone have any other suggestions?