6504 28th Ave NW
Ah, Pizza Hut. So many memories. From sitting in the big, red booths as a child, to the cheap buffet lunches during my time at NAIT. Even with all those memories I can't recall the last time I picked up a pie from the Hut. Maybe this dinner order would win me back. *The above picture was taken after the visit, as it was too dark during my initial stop.
Calling in the order for pickup was a breeze and I was told it would be 15 minutes. Leaving the homestead almost immediately, I arrived before the pie was ready so I had a few minutes to look around. The first I noticed was that the restaurant looks exactly like it did back in the day. I wonder if they ever change things; new chair coverings, paint, tacky gold poles, etc. The restaurant was only occupied by two tables, with two other groups waiting beside me for pick-up. After a few weird looks (either from my face, but mostly likely my camera) from the people in the waiting area, I started to wonder how many sit down Hut's are left. Maybe it's a dieing breed, as I see a lot more corner take-out versions appearing.
One things I was pleasantly surprised by was the customer service. The employee behind the counter, asked a few polite questions and then visually confirmed the pies before handing them over. I really liked this idea, akin to McDonald's double checking your drive thru order. It would suck to get home and not have what you ordered.
Both pizza's were selected from the specialty pizza category, which I think actually lists every common combination possible, meaning I think the only way to not have a specialty pizza would be to make your own...but then wouldn't that be special!! Pizza number one was a first for the homestead, Grilled Chicken Italiano - A mouth-watering combination of grilled chicken, roasted red peppers, green peppers, mushrooms and 100% Pizza Mozzarella. Of course the first thing you might notice is a lack of red peppers! What gives you say. Apparently the location was out of red. They did however contact me on the way over, and ask if more green peppers would be fine. The pizza itself was ok. I do get a little weirded out by perfectly square nuggets of chicken, and they didn't really add anything. The highlight was the dotting of pepper? (see specks in cheese) which did wonders for the taste. I'm sure the red peppers would have also added a level of sweetness that the green couldn't deliver.
The second pizza, while not a regular order, has I'm sure, appeared many times over the years. The Canadian - Loaded with pepperoni, bacon, sliced mushrooms and topped with 100% Pizza Mozzarella. Staring the supper with a piece of the chicken pizza, this pie was polar opposite. The smokey flavour of the bacon dominated this pie, giving it a very meaty profile. In fact it reminded of ordering meat only pizzas back in the day. The mushrooms, even with their umami flavour, couldn't compete on this day. I also enjoyed the sauce, which seemed to have a bit of tang. Not sure what it was per say, but it had enough of something to stick out. Which I suppose is better than just acting as a wall flower.
One thing that was really impressive, was the lack of grease at the bottom of the box. Don't get me wrong it wasn't spotless, but this is classic pan crust pizza we are talking about. Cooked inside a well lubed pan, it has always been on the greasy side. Even the bottom of the crust was noticeably dry, something that everyone in the homestead commented about. So with a fresh memory of the offerings, has this visit convinced me to go back? Probably not, but sometimes it's just nice to confirm things haven't changed.
Thursday, November 19, 2009