How lucky am I? I finally get a Saturday off and there’s a Saturday night NASCAR race. What’s really sad is J has seen more NASCAR than I have this year and I actually had to ask her this morning where the race was at. Since we both wanted to hang out on the couch and watch TV (the White Sox game was on WGN America, so we could flip back an forth), we decided to find a pizza place we hadn’t tried yet.
I drive by the Marcos Pizza on South Cedar quite a bit and we’ve been seeing a lot of commercials lately, so I pulled up a menu online to see what they had to offer. It looked like standard pizza fare to me, so I called in an order for a large cheese pizza.
We gave it about ten minutes then headed down Cedar to pick up the pizza. The building only does carry-out. It’s a stand alone building, but the kitchen takes up 3/4 of the space. There are some cheap red chairs if you have to wait, but we timed it pretty well. When I went in to get my pizza, everyone was pretty busy. There were two people manning phones and two making pizzas. One of the guys making the pizzas saw me standing there and came over to take care of me. I paid the ten dollars and change, grabbed the box and headed home.
When we first opened the box, we were pretty unimpressed. The pizza looked like every other chain pizza. The commercials we’ve been seeing and even the box brags about the freshness and how they never use frozen cheese or dough. The top of the pizza was still a little greasy which is a sign of cheap cheese. It may never be frozen, but it’s not quality mozzarella either. Still, the cheese was nicely browned and the crust was crispier than most places.
J took a bite and said, “eh” It sort of tasted like every other chain place too. That was my first impression as well, but the more I ate of it, the more it grew on me. It wasn’t some magical pizza that is going to change the way I look at all pizzas, but as I got farther into it, I started to notice some more subtle details.
The crust went somewhere between a thick and a thin crust. In some places, it was pretty thin, but in others, it was pretty thick. From that, it’s easy to see the dough is not pre-packaged by a machine. The thinner pieces were much crisper than the thicker pieces, but the dough was cooked well all the way through. It wasn’t chewey or doughy like chain pizza tends to get.
I wasn’t knocked out by the sauce or the cheese. It was fine, but I didn’t notice anything special. The bottom of the box goes on and on about how they use fresh, quality ingredients. I couldn’t really tell a difference.
We go with cheese pizza’s for two reasons. The first is the obvious. J doesn’t really like meat. Still, I could go with something on the other half, but I like to see how places do basic pizzas. There’s not a whole lot of flavor in any places cheese pizza unless you’re at a gourmet pizza shop. A delivery joint is always going to fall short on the simple because they put all their emphasis on the elaborate.
Marcos was good. I got two pieces left in the fridge that I promised I would eat later tonight. Marcos joins the list somewhere near the middle as far as Lansing pizza joints go. The chain places just all seem to do the same thing. I’ve never figured out why they make the same pizza or how so many places can stay in business doing that. I would gladly eat Marcos again, but we’ve still found better other places and will probably continue to patronize the places that do something different.