Tuesday, November 30, 2010


On days when I work late, I want dinner to magically appear on the table. Since I don't have a full-time magic dinner genie (B not included), the next best thing is picking up takeout on my walk home from work. Dangerously, there is a Five Guys located on the path home, and some days it takes a lot of willpower to pass up burgers and cajun fries. Recently, Five Guys got a new neighbor when zpizza moved into the old Blimpie's spot at 8th and H NW.

zpizza is a chain founded in Laguna Beach, CA (not far from where I was raised) and claims to be "inspired by California and a healthy way of life." Sounded perfect to me. They use 100% organic wheat flour in the dough and top the pizzas with skim cheese. In the true California spirit, vegan options are also available.

After a particularly long day at work, I called zpizza to order takeout. About 20 minutes later I arrived at the store. The atmosphere was a bit chaotic as the brand new staff was still finding its way around. However, I was served with a smile and updated regularly on the status of my order.

To get a sense of the menu's range, we ordered a rustica pizza. In contrast to the traditional round pizza, the rusticas are served on a free-form crust that is a bit thicker than the standard zpizza pie. More like a flatbread than a pizza. This one was topped with mozzarella, gorgonzola, pear, and fresh thyme. The liberal use of gorgonzola overpowered the delicate pears but all-in-all, this was a tasty pizza.

To test out the standard pizza offerings, we ordered a large half-cheese, half-mushroom and pineapple pizza. I don't think this pizza will win any awards, but the convenience factor makes it likely that we'll order again. The crust is a little too thin for me to fall in love, but it was a definite step up from standard pizza chain delivery fare.

If you're in the neighborhood for lunch and don't want to face the wait for a table at Matchbox, zpizza (located across the street) offers pizza by the slice and sandwiches. If convenience and not fine dining is what you're after, zpizza fits the bill.

Second Thoughts from B

OK, I admit it, for a second there I forgot what we got from zpizza. A lot of that has to do with the fact that this post has been waiting to be posted for quite some time. However, once J mentioned the rusticas, my eyes opened wide and I let out the obligatory "oh yeah!" with a wide smile. It isn't as if the pear/gorgonzola combo is revolutionary but having it as a to-go option on J's walk home should raise our property value a touch.

For those of you not lucky enough to be our neighbors, keep zpizza in mind the next time you're in the Chinatown area and in need of a quick bite. After all, fast food - like real estate - is all about location, location, location and in the case of zpizza, they couldn't have done much better in our book.

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