Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Donatos

http://www.donatos.com/

We went to Donatos Pizza at Shadeland and 75th St. last night for dinner. I find the layout Donatos kind of confusing and overwhelming.  We walk in and were immediately greeted by a guy.  We said hi, and started staring at the menu board.  It was set up like a fast food restaurant, but the print was kind of small and hard to read.  The guy finally realized I was trying to read and interpret the menu and offered me a paper menu. That actually helped me out a lot.  I had on my really strong glasses, and should have been able to see and read the menu.  The guy was still standing there and waiting for us to order, while I was trying to read through all of the specialty pizzas listed on the menu.  I finally gave up and ordered my regular: bacon, Roma tomato, mushroom pizza on a hand tossed crust.  By this time, I was so hungry I couldn't think straight or make any rational decisions anyway, so, I may as well stick with the normal toppings.  I also ordered the garlic cheese bread with tomato sauce as an appetizer.

This is said paper menu.
To be honest, I've never been impressed with Donatos pizza. My boss always orders it on the rare occasions when he buys us pizza for lunch.  He always orders either completely veggie or completely meat loaded thin crust.  Obviously, not what I would order for myself.  I'm not a big fan of pepperoni on pizza.  After being on a low salt/no salt diet for over a year, it is way too salty after being cooked and causes me heartburn!  I love pepperoni by itself when it hasn't been cooked.  I could sit and eat a whole package!  But I digress, and I don't normally do that.

Trash can  containing all of the paper products and condiments.

After we ordered, we went and filled our cups with Pepsi products and sat down. I had Dr. Pepper for my beverage.  We all know I love my Pepsi products!  Then, I went to where the plates, napkins, forks, straws, red pepper, and Parmesan were located and loaded up.  They were right above the trash can, which kind of grosses me out a little bit.  We chose a table and sat down. 

We waited about five minutes for the garlic cheese bread to come out.  It was a sub bun with butter, garlic and a three cheese mix on it. The sauce for the cheese bread had a really good flavor to it. It was very savory with a good Italian seasoning to it.
When they brought the pizza out to us, they had accidentally already put it in a box.  The guy apologized when he brought it out to us. I said, it was OK because there would probably be left overs to take home any way. 


I liked the thick crust much better than their thin crust pizza.  The crust has a bit of garlic on it.  I still saved the extra sauce from the cheese bread to dip it in.  The bacon had some odd size chunks, but it had an OK flavor.  It wasn't too salty.  The tomatoes were nice fresh Roma tomatoes.  I just wish they had put more on the pizza.  There was barely a slice of tomato per slice of pizza.  The mushrooms were very light in color, almost see through, and very light in flavor.  The cheese could have been a little more flavorful.  Maybe we should have gotten the three cheese blend. The sauce was the worst part.  It seemed like there wasn't enough!  I couldn't taste it.  Good think I had saved the sauce from the cheese bread.  In general, this pizza could have used more tomatoes and more sauce. 
The toppings also kept sliding off of the slice of pizza, but I couldn't eat it with the plastic fork.  The fork would not cut through the crust very easily.  For the price of the pizza, I am not very impressed with having to use paper plates and plastic where when eating inside of the restaurant.  It's set up like a fast food joint for pizza, but costs too much for fast food.  Also, loud rap music was playing the whole time we were there.  I actually like rap music, but I thought it doesn't exactly create a great pizza restaurant atmosphere.  They do have a free meeting room/ party room, I'm sure with the purchase of food.  I give Donatos 2 and a quarter pizza pies out of four.  I wouldn't exactly recommend this as one of my favorite pizzas. 



Monday, March 14, 2011

Bazbeaux Pizza


http://www.bazbeaux.com/
This weekend, we had a birthday shindig for a friend at Bazbeaux on Mass Ave.  The first interesting thing about this outing was, I didn't realize Bazbeaux had moved across the street from it's location.  We had walked there from the Starbucks down the street and saw huge white paper blocking all of the windows.  That was a little worrysom.  But when you finally get really close to the paper, you can see that it says in tiny black pin markings, "Moved across the street next to Ball & Bisquit."  Well, after finding it, we walk in to realize, they wouldn't let the coordinator of our outing get seating together for such a large group.  Part of the group had got there at five, and were seated at a fairly large table.  Another part of the group had gotten there at 5:30 since, this was a "Surprise" for the Birthday girl that all of her friends and family were showing up while she was eating pizza.  Then, another part of the group was showing up at six.  (Some even showed up later than that, but most of us were done by about seven.)  When a couple more of the six o'clock group got there, I put our name in for a table.  I told the guy seating people, we were part of the birthday party, and he seemed very annoyed.  Then, after about twenty minutes, part of the original group had left, and the coordinator asked us to sit down where they had been.  I went up and asked the other person taking down names, and she said she would find out. Then, the first guy came back, and I explained, we were offered spaces at the original table.  He seemed extremely annoyed and blurted out, "WHATEVER!" So, I went and sat down with the group. 
I usually end up with the same guy as my server almost every time I've gone to that Bazbeaux.  He's the guy with the bald head and the blonde handlebar mustache.  This time, we had a new guy. As soon as he realized that we had sat down and wanted to order, he got our drink orders.  Baxbeaux carries Coke products, which includes Mr. Pibb. I like Mr. Pibb!  He came back with the drinks and asked for our order. 

I ordered us a Greek Salad with Spinach instead of lettuce with Cucumber dressing for me and Ranch for him.   We split a small.  I prefer Spinach over lettuce any day.  Plus, since it's a "Greek Salad," I find the spinach better with the "Greek" toppings.  Maybe I decided that spinach was "greek" in my head.  I don't think that is really the case.  On the salad, they put pitted olives, feta cheese, shaved parmesian cheese, and tomato.  Their Creamy Cucumber dressing has a very cool creamy taste with a good hint of the cucumber flavor, which I love! I've tried bottled Creamy Cucumber dressings, and nothing is as good as Bazbeaux!  I forgot to ask, and I couldn't find on the web site whether or not Bazbeaux makes their own salad dressings.  The ingredients they use for the salad always seem extremely fresh. 
 
For pizza I ordered the B.O.T. with Wheat crust.  I LOVE the option to get wheat crust at Bazbeaux.  Even though pizza isn't always healthy, the option to have wheat crust makes you feel a little better about eating it! Now, you may ask, what is a B.O.T. pizza?  Well, the B. is... you guessed it, Bacon,  the O. is onion, and the T. is Tomato.  It also has fresh cut basil all over the top of the pizza.  The bacon is in nice size pieces and had a nice smokey flavor.  The tomato are cut into chunks instead of slices and are very fresh.  The onion is red onion, which not only had a nice sweet flavor when cooked, but adds to the visual effect of the pizza. The sauce is sweet with a little bit of tang.  The sauce almost looks like it could be freshly crushed tomatoes.  The cheese is pretty creamy and melts very well.  The only thing about the crust is, it's a bit on the crunchy side.  I always save some of my Creamy Cucumber dressing to dip my crust in. 
I find that Bazbeaux has a comfortable atmosphere with local flavor.  The move to across the street gave the Mass Ave location a ton more space.  Maybe that will help them get more people in and seated faster on busy nights.  That has been an issue in the past, 45-60 minute waits in a very small confined space.  I have been to this location and the Broad Ripple location, and both have the same type of atmosphere.  I've never had a huge problem with group seating before this time.  They do like to have all of your group there before they will even take your name.  More restaraunts are becoming that way around this area.  I would recommend Bazbeaux as a whole package, the atmosphere and the food.  They are also known for their specialties pizzas. You can look those up on the website's menu.  I give Bazbeaux three and a half pizza pies out of fourth!  Totally worth the experience!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Monical's Pizza

http://www.monicalspizza.com/

Tonight my sorority had a fundraiser at Monical's Pizza in the Glendale shopping center.  With a flyer that the restaurant provided, 20% of the bill was donated to the sorority.  The inside is a lot more spacious then it looks from the outside. It had a homey atmosphere.  We were greeted by a woman as soon as we walked in the front door.  We were seated. 
This pizza place carried Pepsi Products.  That always makes me happy!  I had a Mountain Dew: Milk of the Gods! (That was for my niece!)
I started out with a round of bread sticks with nacho cheese as an appetizer.  When I asked if they had cheese dip, the server told me they had two kinds of cheese dip: Cheddar and Nacho.  That's pretty amazing!  The bread sticks were very soft with only a little bit of salt for seasoning. There may have been a little bit of garlic too.  I really liked them with the nacho cheese combination. 

I ordered a 10 inch pan pizza with Tomatoes, Bacon, and Mushrooms. I ten inch pizza is probably enough for three people, especially after eating the bread sticks. The tomato and mushrooms were pretty fresh.  The bacon pieces were cut into nice sizes and had a nice flavor and texture. 

Here is a slice by itself.  The sauce was sweet with a nice touch of italian spiciness. The pizza had a nice thickness to it. It almost was thick enough to be deep dish.  I would go back to Monical's Pizza.  The prices are reasonable, the employees are kind, and the food was pretty good.  They also carry other dishes, like sandwiches, salads, and pastas.  I give Monical's 2 and three quarter pizza pies out of four.  The next time I go, I will probably try a sandwich.