We went to a newly opened local pizza place today – had coupons, feeling adventurous, yadda yadda. My first impression of the place was that it was pretty generic – white walls, red vinyl cafe chairs, napkin dispensers on the tables, etc. And when we got our first tastes of the pizza it was also pretty generic. I think we were lucky that they hardly put any sauce on because what small flavor it gave was more acidy/spicy than we like (which seems terribly common in California). The pizza as a whole seemed more texture than taste – even though the motzarella cheese melted nicely, it didn’t have much flavor. And we think they cooked it in a convection oven – the mushrooms (on John’s half) looked rather dry, and it ready to eat VERY quickly. The one good thing was that it wasn’t very greasy, although some grease might have added a bit more OOOMPH. I won’t tell you the name, but it had a basic patriotic theme… I wonder if this place will last longer than the flags on the SUVs did.
In general, I’m sorta weirded out by the names of a lot of pizza places around here, since I come from NY where every pizza place was either an Italian or Greek name – ahhhhh. 😉 Here we have Mountain Mike’s Pizza (went there once – dry as a board), Straw Hat (that acidy/spicy sauce again), Cowboy Pizza Company (have never been there, will never be there), Round Table (okay eat-in, but the transport home actually loses something?). The one place we’ve found that we can eat regularly is a independent place called Bevo’s, which also serves plates of various kinds of pasta, and subs and ice cream as well. (It’s not gourmet, it’s a pizza joint – and sometimes that’s just what you want.) Eventually, however, I WILL learn how to make my own pesto sauce at home and then I’ll go nuts with homemade gourmet pizzas. *grin*