Sunday, October 7, 2012

Grandad's Pizza in Byrne's Pub (1254 West 3rd Avenue, Columbus, OH) Grandview

Hype: I've seen coupons here and there but there wasn't really any.  We knew they served pizza in a bar, which is tough to mess up, so it sounded like a surefire way to eat a good pie and and have some refreshments before the BIG GAME!!!

Scene: Gee, it's a good thing we weren't there at night.  It looks to be an Irish Rock bar.  Beyond the possibility of hearing Irish music this is a nice place.  Wide selection at the bar, ample seating with an excellent patio. They serve good pizza too.  Oh yeah, affordable Great Lakes pitchers and TV screens helped us root for an undefeated Northwestern Football Squad.

The Pie:
Crust- thin to win.  stood up to plenty of sauce while maintaing it's COLUMBUS EDGE.  Take a look at that.
Sauce- not too flavorful, but that was ok.  It was kinda sweet with hints of tomatoieness.
Cheese- mild, evenly applied.
Peps- very nicely cupped, with some greasiness.  Very spicy.  Very delightful.

Overall: Nice place.  This pizza was not mind-blowing but it is an excellent Columbus-style pizza.  It fits in perfectly as a thin, spicy pepped, Grandview/Arlington Style pie.  The fact that you can eat it in Byrnes makes it a no brainer.  If I lived in Grandview (and I would never consider it) I would do Grandads all the time. 4--5 pies!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Little Palace (240 S. 4th St. Columbus, OH)

Hype: It's been forever since we've done a new pie so we wanted to get something good.  I'll be honest; we drove past two that were closed, then drove from King Ave down High St. looking for pizza shops.  We decided not to do Fabian's (because it sucks) and that landed us all the way downtown.  I was pissed.  After quite a drive Dave remembered this place served pizza.  Good.  I was STARVING!

Scene: Kool looking downtown bar/restaurant, like Press Grill but not so creepy.  It was what it should be. Nice draft beer spread, TV's with sports and fairly good looking people seated throughout kinda made me want something other than pizza, but Dave helped me focus on business.  We did have to figure out what was the peperoni pizza-like item on the menu.  If you go, you'll catch on.
The Pie:
Crust- Hand tossed, chewy and airy.  Very nice with just a touch of toast where appropriate.
Sauce- Spicy with tomato seeds and all.
Cheese- Not liberally applied, but this did not detract from the experience.  It may have drowned out the sauce and not-peperoni.
Peps- They had some other name for them.  They were spicy, interesting, and well applied.  This was a hit.  One minor detail--they added a few jalapeno peppers for heat.  I was on the fence but Dave likes it Hot!
Overall: I like this joint.  I guess they serve other stuff too, but the pizza oven is the real deal.  Take a lady because it is a nice spot with quality pies.  4--5.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Verdi Pizza Restaurant & Pizzaria (7770 Olentangy River Road, Columbus, OH)

Hype: Absolutely none.  We were just looking for a nice slice and didn't want to drive too far.  No expectations.
 Scene: Verdi is a pretty small place on the end of a strip mall.  It has some outdoor seating but it was too cold.  A family occupied a long table in the middle, which added a good positive vibe to our dinner.  Three generations at one table; very nice.  We were seated next to the beer fridge, which had a small, but solid selection of beers and sodas.  The guy talked us in to a Birra Moretti--a favorite of his and ours!  A few Italian looking prints added to a very positive ambiance.  Just as our pizza arrived the guy (manager, owner, we don't know) talked us in to a second round.  We could not refuse. 

The Pie:
Crust- Plenty of seasoning and garlic salt make it flavorful.  It is also foldable in the NYC Style.  We liked the chewiness.  It wasn't perfect though.  They should have left it in the oven a touch longer to brown it up just a little more.  With just a little more crispness this pie would be truly top notch.
Sauce- Understated next to the other toppings but filled with oregano and seasonings.
Cheese- Evenly and liberally applied.  Well done next to the peps.
Peps- Oily yet delicious.  Not overly salty yet flavorful.  Kinda interesting.  We liked em.

Overall: On its own, as a take-out pie, Verdi is solid but not amazing.  Dine in and you will find it to be a hidden treasure of whatever neighborhood this is--we don't know.  Families, awesome manager/owner dude, good beverage selections, and a very nice atmosphere all add to the pizza experience giving it a 5/5 pies.  Excellent place.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Rocco's Pizza Plus (1664 W. 1st Ave, Grandview Heights)

Hype: This place just opened last week so we thought we'd give it a go.  It has Pizza Plus attached to the name and the others (Bexley and Gahanna) are pretty good.

Scene: It is kinda sterile in there.  Too big, golf on the TV, and just not right.  We were not excited by the age of the workers, which I would average at about 19.  While we have had many good pies made by young people, these were not those kind of young people.  They were clean cut;  not creepy, not Juggalos.  So this was a bad sign. 

Crust- Thick, bready, a little doughy, and boring.
Sauce- Not heavily applied.  It lacked the spice of other Pizza Plus locations.
Cheese- Pretty good, but again not stellar.  It was really thick in the center and light as we moved towards the edges.
Peps- Very boring.  Tasteless.  They do offer a "Spicey Pep" option, which we also tried and these tasted like real peps.  Our advice is to just drop the regular pepperoni option and call the spicey ones the regular.  We'll just act like this never happened.

Overall:  Certainly the weakest link in the Pizza Plus Chain. Barely 3-5 pies.  We had leftover slices for roommates with low standards.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Oldfield's Bar (1571 North 4th Street, Columbus, OH)

Hype: Our friend said the bar has good pizza. I didn't believe a word of it because it is Oldfield's and he is the kind of person that likes everyone and everything.

Scene: This was one of the first places I visited when I moved to Columbus. I remember it being really skuzzy and filled with major drunks. Not anymore. Somebody must have bought it, because it got a major facelift since the late 90's. It was pretty dark, so I couldn't get many photos. Big HDTV we used to watch the OSU basketball game. Columbus Brewing Company on draft. Well done.

Crust-Thin and a little sweet. Not as flaky as some of the better thin-crusts in town, but surprisingly good.
Sauce- Pretty sweet with a touch of oregano coming through.
Cheese- Not bad. Not evenly applied. Some corners needed extra and it was a little thick in the middle.
Peps- Pretty good. Salty and a bit oily, but not bad.
Overall: I was surprised that it did not suck. I really was bracing myself for a crappy pie, but this was pretty good. When you consider the whole package: osu basketball on an nice TV, Columbus Brewing Company on Draft, decent pie, this place is a winner. 4--5.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Montoni's Pizza (5244 Godown Road, Columbus--Bethel Center)

Hype: Dave drives past this place all the time so we knew of its existence. That's it. Honestly, two other places were closed so we settled on this place.

Scene: Very nice. It is attached to a bar. It was kinda run down. A nice lady was cooking pies and taking orders--a one woman show. She turned the TV to us and put on ESPN.

The Pie:
Crust- Great. Thin, well-cooked. Held up well, except for the greasy middle. That was a peperoni issue though. Alone, this crust was solid.
Sauce- Straight outta the can and not that good.
Cheese- Liberally applied and good.
Peps- Too greasy. Not that good.
Overall-- Not a bad pie if you are hard up or in a bar in Bethel Center that happens to be attached to a pizza shop. Non-pep pizzas are recommended. (3--5)