Find a back issue

Taste Test Thursday: Dallas Delivery Pizza

I once watched a Freaky Eaters episode of a 20-something man addicted to pizza. Bread, cheese, and tomato sauce was all he’d eat. No veggies, no nothing. His health suffered, his personal life went down the drain, and he was throwing up some weird gunk every morning.

I finished watching that episode and wanted to eat pizza immediately.

Here’s the thing: You can’t hate pizza. There are all sorts of pizzas, so it’s impossible to dislike. Hate Cane Rosso’s? Go to Zoli’s. Want to dine in? No. Fine. Do take out. Or better yet, sit on your couch and watch the Mavs lose by one point and drop to the eighth seed, while you order a 16-incher and swallow your woes with gobfuls of cheese.

That’s the way we do it here in the Big D. We order for delivery.

1_taste_test_name

A. Pizza Hut’s 14″ cheese pizza – $10.00 (national)

B. Farnatchi’s 16″ cheese pizza – $16.00 (local)

C. Zini’s 16″ cheese pizza – $12.95 (local)

D. i Fratelli’s 16″ cheese pizza - $11.35 (local)

E. Campisi’s 16″ cheese pizza - $14.56 (local)

F. Rocco’s 16″ cheese pizza – $13.95 (local)

A2
3_tasting_notes
Arrived exactly within its 25-30 min time frame. Actually came a few minutes earlier. (Called at 12:18)

  • “Good ratio of sauce to cheese, but the crust fails to excite me. Typical pizza. Crust doesn’t travel well.”
  • “Sauce is tangy, ad not in a good way. Overly garlicy. Nice try on the airy crust but still wouldn’t eat this outside a kid’s pizza party.”
  • “The dump-truck of butter, sugar, and garlic that has been poured into this thing is too iconic for me to pretend I don’t know it’s Pizza Hut. It was the last one I ate and it was a tragic caricature of pizza after having all the others. “
  • “Soft crust, nice flavoring. I would be happy with this pizza.”
  • “Really sweet red sauce, nice breadish crust. Doesn’t hurt my teeth.”

 

B
3_tasting_notes
Arrived exactly within its 45 min time frame. Actually came 10 minutes earlier. (Called at 12:08)

  • “I’m a fan of the thin crust. You could eat 17 slices of this. Not saying you SHOULD. But you could.”
  • “Crust is nice and light. Couldn’t taste sauce. Feels like there was none.”
  • “No sauce, but sweet. Chewy in a bad way, no bite, little flavor.”
  • “Cheese looks like real, unprocessed cheese. Great flavor. Perfect ratio of sauce to cheese.”
  • “Not much flavor and chewy rubber crust.”

C
3_tasting_notes
Arrived exactly within 30 minutes, like the delivery guy said. (Called at 12:09)

  • “Not sure what happened here. Outer crust burned on one side, undercooked on the other. Chewy. “
  • “Hello, Campisi’s”
  • “Ambitious spice job, but the crust ranged from soft to burnt without warning. The cheese seemed Frankenstein-ed from three other pizzas. It was a pie that completely lacked cohesion.”
  • “Too much cheese. Love the herb/spices on top. Sweet sauce. Heartier texture.”
  • “Where’s the sauce? Dry, tasteless crust”

D
3_tasting_notes
Arrived a few minutes later than its 25-30 minute window. (Called at 12:14)

  • ” I’m a fan of the cracker crust. And there’s some good flavor going on here (though I’d argue for less Italian seasoning sprinkled on top). This stuff would be awesome cold, the next day. This is the only pie I returned to for another slice, to sate my appetite.”
  • “Sauce: very wine-y. Crust: Crockery bullsh**. Cheese: Whatever.”
  • “This was decent overall, but was just trying too hard. There is some x-factor ingredient in the sauce making this pizza seem annoyingly clever. You should never attempt to reinvent pizza. “
  • “Oregano punches up the sauce, slightly crisp crust, but still too soft.”
  • “Calm down with the oregano. Too much!”

E
3_tasting_notes
Arrived a few minutes earlier. Said it would arrive 45-1 hour, but it only took 30 minutes to get here. (Called at 12:09)

  • “This is cracker style, like C, but not as good. Crust is undercooked and lifeless.”
  • “This cracker crust is a joke. A stingy sauce job doesn’t help either. The cheese is plainly fine.”
  • “Good cheese to sauce ratio. Held up the best.”
  • “Crust had great texture, sauce was too sweet, but the cheese was great. Just enough.”
  • “Too chewy, almost fishy sauce, cheese is flavorless”

F
3_tasting_notes
Surprised this even got to our office. Didn’t take down our names and the employee asked for our address three times. But it made it within the 45 minute time frame. (Called at 12:14)

  • “There is a rubbery element to this pizza, and thought that’s a problem it isn’t offensive enough to make this entirely unpleasant. The sauce is non-committal. The
    crust is delightfully weak.”
  • “Cheese is gummy, but has good flavor. Sauce is nearly nonexistent.”
  • “Flavorless and greasy”
  • “Too chewy, spongy cheese, not enough sauce.”
  • “Best cheese, crust, tomato.”

 

4_tally_up

5 votes for (D) i Fratelli
3 votes for (F) Rocco’s
2 votes for (E) Campisi’s
1 vote for (C) Zini’s
1 vote for (A) Pizza Hut

5_conclusion

To quote a young man in this office whose name sounds something like Tim Rogers: “Bottom line here is that we learned you shouldn’t have pizza delivered. What’s the expression? ‘Pizza is like sex. There’s no such thing as bad pizza.’ Maybe. But all the sex I’ve had delivered has been unsatisfying. Just like all this pizza.”

Delivery pizza is sometimes a necessary evil, and if you’re doing it, you might as well pick the best one. i Fratelli’s looked very similar in shape and size to Campisi’s, but it won for its seasoning and crackery crust. (Campisi’s crust was too cardboard-ish and lacked spices. All it had was pepper.)

Zini’s is weird. The cheese and crust separate too easily, and yet there’s no tomato sauce in the middle. I don’t like it when you can’t find the sauce. There’s no point in pizza if you don’t have tomato goop.

Two people voted for Rocco’s, oddly enough. I thought it was disgusting and rubbery and too paper-thin flat. Again, where’s the sauce? Pizza Hut, with its thick, pasty cheese and gobs of sauce, is way better in comparison. Even if its soggy oily crust is, well, soggy and oily… at least it doesn’t taste like plastic pizza.

Last, but definitely not least: No one picked Farnatchi. It had a tomato cream sauce with pockets of mozzarella. Definitely the prettiest, most attractive pizza by far, but looks like it didn’t hit the target mark with anyone. It fell somewhere in the middle, in terms of rankings.

So here’s the all caps recap:

THE SOGGIEST: Pizza Hut
THE MOST TOMATO CREAMY: Farnatchi
THE THICKEST: Zini’s
THE MOST WELL-SEASONED PIZZA (AND THE WINNER): i Fratelli
THE CRACKLIEST CRUST: Campisi’s
THE MOST RUBBERY: Rocco’s