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A True Travesty of Taste

June 8, 2009
A meat lover's pie from the infamous Pizza the Hut.

A meat lover's pie from the infamous Pizza the Hut. I think that's a packet of extra grease in the top right portion of the box, but I've been wrong before.

I cannot believe the article I just read on msn.com.  I’m almost speechless.  Most people might say that what I’m about to write about is of little to no importance.  I do not share this opinion, so let’s dive in.

The reason I clicked the article in the first place was that it claimed to be about the best and worst pizza in America.  Now I know there are a myriad of opinions on what makes a good pie, but since this is my blog and my blog post, all opinions expressed in this piece are solely those of the author.  The article interested me because I thought it would be one slamming American pizza chains such as Pizza Hut, Papa John’s, Domino’s, Pizzeria Uno and the like for the gluttonous creations I know them for (Cheesesteak pizza?  Are you kidding me?  A cheesesteak and pizza are entirely separate things and should remain that way).  I did find what I expected to regarding these chains and how disgusting and unhealthy their product is, but there was also some information that I was absolutely appalled by.

Red Lobster’s “lobster pizza” was voted as the worst seafood pizza in America.

A disgruntled Red Lobster employee after learning the fate of their lobster pizza.

A disgruntled Red Lobster employee after learning the fate of their lobster pizza.

First of all, why would someone order pizza at a Red Lobster?  This doesn’t make any sense to me.  Second of all, why even go to Red Lobster at all?  I live in Columbus, Ohio and there are a wealth of better places to find seafood in this city.  And third and final, in my opinion, much like the dilemma of the cheeseteak pizza, seafood has no place on a pie.  I don’t even understand how this was a category.

The last issue I have with this has to do with respecting ingredients.  Some may say this is tacky, but I think there is a certain amount of respect that food should be treated with.  The lobster used on the pizza gave its life so that others may seek nourishment from it.  If I were a lobster and I knew how good I tasted, the last way I would want to be eaten would be covered in fatty cheese on a starchy mess of dough.  Also, one slice of the lobster pizza has 720 calories.  The standard recommended caloric intake for a human is roughly 2,000 calories per day.  Three slices of this pizza constitutes all the calories an average person needs for one day – and it all comes from one meal.  People wonder why there is such an issue with obesity in this country…

The article continues to highlight the worst pizzas, all of which came from Pizza Hut, Papa John’s, Sbarro, Romano’s Macaroni Grill, and Pizzeria Uno.  Uno, the chain credited with inventing deep dish Chicago-style pie was voted as having the worst all-around pizza in the whole of America.  That is quite the accomplishment.  A “classic individual deep dish” from Uno comes in at 2,310 calories.  I don’t understand how they can even sell this.  Much like the lobster pizza, the caloric numbers from this one meal alone constitute a whole day’s worth of eating.

I was nothing short of mortified by what the article claimed as the best pizzas in America.  The best veggie concoction went to Pizza Hut.  The best Hawaiian was Domino’s (Again, another odd category.  As a fan of an occasional Hawaiian pizza I appreciated this, but surely, it’s not possible Domino’s makes the best.).  The best individual size pizza went to Chuck E. Cheese (pause for laughter because this much be some sort of sick joke).  And the best meat-lover’s went to Pizza Hut.

Something is gravely wrong here.  There’s no way that chains are responsible for all the best varieties of pizza in this country.  If I had to choose to eat any of the aforementioned varieties of pizza and could have it from anywhere in America, I would not order anything from a chain.  The article fails to mention old-guard stalwarts such as Lombardi’s, Joe’s (in my opinion, the best “street-slice” EVER), and Grimaldi’s in New York, in addition to overlooking newer entries such as Mozza in LA, Pizzeria Bianco in Phoenix, We, The Pizza in DC, as well as Motorino and Lucali, again in New York City.  All five of these places are well-known amongst pizza mavens and have received extremely favorable reviews from some of the best food writers in America.  Yet, allegedly, not one of them is capable of making anything better than Domino’s, Pizza Hut, and Chuck E. Cheese!?!?  WE’RE TALKING ABOUT CHUCK E. CHEESE!!  I have to say, at this point, the article is in a realm somewhere beyond preposterous.

Pizza from Grimaldi's in Brooklyn, NY.

Pizza from Grimaldi's in Brooklyn, NY.

Now, I’m not ashamed to admit I’ve eaten more than my fair share of bad pizza.  There’s a place at Denison University in Granville, OH, where I went to school, called The Incredible Pizza Company.  The only thing incredible about them is that they are open until 4:00 AM and that it will always, ALWAYS, take more than an hour to have your food delivered.  These two facets alone make it a truly amazing establishment.  I once had a friend whose delivery took so long he just went to bed.  When the pizza finally arrived, circa 4:45 AM, the delivery man demanded he come down from his room to pay.  My friend yelled into the phone, “Kiss my ass, pizza man!” and hung up.

My point here is not that the Incredible Pizza Company was slow for delivery or always open late.  It’s that I’m aware of what constitutues “good” in the realm of pizza and what does not because I’ve had both. In addition to that, I also spent four months living in Rome, so when it comes to Italian food I’m pretty comfortable in describing myself as “well-versed.”  As a result, when I read things claiming Pizza Hut and Domino’s are responsible for what constitutes 50% of the best pizza in America, I’m going to resoundly disagree because this is just blatantly untrue. I know taste is subjective and all, but seriously…fucking Domino’s? At the very least, the article should have specified it was solely discussing chain restaurants.  Anyways, I’m beginning to rant a leetle tooo much so I’m going to shut it down.  Just remember these thoughts the next time you pick up the phone and order a large pep with mushroom.

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. December 11, 2009 5:33 pm

    Authentic words, some truthful words dude. Totally made my day!

  2. January 5, 2010 1:05 am

    Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!

  3. Holly permalink
    March 17, 2010 11:15 am

    I work at Red Lobster, and I don’t even like seafood, but I just feel I should say that the whole pizza is 720 calories. If you’ve ever had it, you would be able to see that its a super thin crust margarita style pizza and there would be no possible way for one tiny slice to have 720 calories alone. I’m not going to get into the discussion over whether or not the pizza tastes good, because I really don’t care either way; I just thought I’d shed some light on the false information that you were providing and the sources you were lacking.

    • rmthon permalink
      March 17, 2010 2:01 pm

      Hey, Holly, and thank you for your comments. A few things though…I explicitly stated what my source was in the first paragraph; I think maybe even the first sentence. I’d also like to point out you don’t give a source either…and that there is no such thing as a “margarita style” pie. Margarita refers to the toppings of the pizza (tomato, basil, mozz) and has nothing to do with the crust. I will admit that it does seem I’ve made a mistake though based on the information the article I used provided. It did state that it was 720 calories per slice. After just now going back and checking this out again on the internet, it appears that was quite the error on my part, but it was only based on the information available at the time in the article by MSNBC. I’ve done some reading, and have concluded that it is in fact NOT true that pizza is 720 calories per slice, but as a whole, so thanks for making me aware of this. However, the pizza still does exceed the sodium limits for one meal at 1,390 mg.

      • Holly permalink
        March 25, 2010 12:33 am

        By ‘margarita-style’, I was referring to the toppings (it’s very similar, but includes lobster as well) which is why I also added “super thin crust” to the description- not to imply that ‘margarita-style’ dealt with the crust in itself.

        In addition, I’m not claiming this to be the best, or most healthy, pizza by any means; I could care less for most anything sold there. I was just reading your article and thought to do some research on the information, mostly out of curiosity. I don’t mean to come off as rude, and all in all I enjoyed your article; personal opinions aside- though I don’t think the pizza is anywhere near one of the worst, haha. I enjoyed the comic relief throughout the piece as well, and found it entertaining.

  4. Anete Simpson permalink
    December 2, 2010 4:24 pm

    Nice article. Waiting for you to continue the topic.

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