Off Topic: Pizza

Image: Kotaku/Alex Walker

I make it a point not to eat pizza, or at least as little as humanly possible. It's not that I hate the doughy, topped delight that Italians brought into the world - it's that I love it too much.

But when I was in Las Vegas for CES last week, I made an exception. And holy shit, did I make the correct choice.

Pictured above is my best life: a simple cheese and basil pizza with a bendy, but ever-so-slightly charred, crust. It's a simple flavour. It's pleasant. It's great.

But what types of pizzas do you like to consume?

If it's a work situation and someone is doing a mass order, I like the lowest-possible-calories option of a margherita. As a kid I swore by ham and pineapple, but now it's either as little as possible, supreme or, if it's a nice place, a ricotta/spinach calzone.

What about yourselves?


    As minimal as possible - the way it was meant to be enjoyed. Long gone are the days of "extra meat, extra cheese and extra jalapenos" on my 'za.
    3 or 4 toppings max hits the spot for me.

      Yup. Base, topping and sauce. Always works.


      When you start making your own and experimenting with flavours, you realise simple is superior. two or three toppings.

      Extra Jalapenos is a secret sin of mine though!

      Until I worked in a gourmet shop, I never realised how true this actually was. Pizza base, cheese, sauce and then 4 toppings max. The reason is because you can actually seperate the flavours in your mouth at this point. Beyond that it becomes too much of a mishmash, too confusing (And expensive!). There's also the fact the pizza itself can become too crowded and actually not cook properly believe it or not if its overloaded. But yeah, 4 toppings max and thats pushing it, 3 seems the sweet spot.

    Pizza is great. I ate one for dinner last night, a local pizza store's supreme, which was light on the crust and just the right amount of fresh and tasty ingredients.

    But man, ever had a chicago deep dish pizza? Like the ones that Patxi's sell in San Francisco? ... drooool...

    Funnily enough, I actually had a Chicago deep dish pizza in Chicago itself (though not from the original store that created them, because my Dad was too impatient to wait)... not as good as the one in San Francisco!

    Last edited 10/01/17 11:26 am

      There's a place here in Perth called Theo's that does about three different "skillet" pizzas... And they are amazing. Basically just cheese, pepperoni and grease, but so so good.


    But also I honestly prefer wood fired Italian Margherita with some thinly sliced prosciutto on top. Gets me salivating at the thought of it... Like right now. Damnit @alexwalker now I'm starving :'(

    Last edited 10/01/17 11:30 am

    It depends, but generally speaking there should be no more than 3 toppings. Any more than that and the flavours are just trying too hard to out compete each-other and nobody wins.

    Pepperoni, but it has to be quality pepperoni.

    When I started out as a chef so many years back I made pizzas at least 3 days per week. Had many favourites and it depended on the mood at the time. Basic margarita if I'm feeling cheesy, or pepperoni if I want some meat. If I want something lighter then a prosciutto, rocket and basil works wonders. For the basic aromatic bliss it's hard to go past cabanossi with mushroom and onion. Ham and pineapple is a classic as a kid but as an adult adding some chili works wonders.

    Then occasionally you feel like a deep dish slog that you have to eat with a spoon, especially if you don't want to live very long. Deep dish pizza with the works and extra sauce and cheese.

    If its a good pizza place I agree, minimal toppings, margherita, maybe with olives or prosciutto.
    If its a dominos/pizza hut type deal, then supreme or hawaiian, I have a soft spot for pizza capers meatlovers.

    I've been spoiled. My household requires gluten free, making your standard pizza impossible, so.. we make our own. Gluten free pizza bases are available everywhere these days. The other night I made a fairly simple chorizo and mozzarella pizza with herbs and dried chilli, with a sriracha sauce. So good.

      Yeap in the same boat.
      Gluten AND lactose intolerance in my house.
      But we threw a couple together the other night and they were awesome.
      Wild boar salami, mushroom, olive, sun-dried tomato, lactose free cheese.
      So good.
      Damn it now I want pizza.

      Clearly a fellow spice fiend. Try using chopped Chipotle peppers in adoba sauce as a won't look back!

    Garlic pizza with king prawns and bacon! Best combo ever!

      That actually sounds very good

        If your local pizza store makes their Garlic pizza with thicker garlic bread style base, it's a million times better. Thin normal base is good, but thicker base is better.

      Seafood on pizza is an abomination, heathen!

        Sounds like you have never tried a prawn, chicken and pineapple pizza or you would change your tune. Delicious!

          Pineapple with prawns? Sorry sir, but you have lost my respect. :P

          Honestly I think part of my reluctance with seafood on pizza is not fully trusting a pizza restaurant with seafood. If I was sure it was fresh and done hygienically then I would probably give it a go. But in general I'm just not a fan of the idea.
          I love seafood otherwise.

    at my local pizza shot i get a make your own with Chicken, Bacon, Ham, Steak, Egg, Sauage and Extra Cheese on a BBQ base.

    Last edited 10/01/17 11:41 am

    I thought I knew pizza... until we went on a trip to Italy last year. Holy shit... I have never been so wrong in my life. Italian pizza is on a whole other level from anything I've had in Australia (to the point where the pizza we got from a freaking takeaway in a train station was positively delicious).

    Mushroom pizza is the bees knees. 2-3 types of mushrooms, cheese, tomato. Done.

      Wouldn't happen to have been from the Colosso metro station would it? Their Margherita pizza was the best pizza I've ever had.

        It was at Roma Termini, from a dodgy looking takeaway place sitting right next to the platform. In Australia, we'd be lucky to get a Mrs. Macs pie!

    Love Pepperoni and Meat Lovers. Though there is a little pizza place across the road from my work that does a really nice bolognese mince style pizza. So tasty!!

    I had a friend who had a pizza place, he used to make us a special chicken and mayo pizza (with onion and corn) it was awesome.
    Anywhere else I go for an Aussie.

    That pizza in the picture looks like something straight out of Fallout, seriously I thought it was radioactive mould when I first saw it.

    wow i am surprised by the minimum number of toppings comments.
    For me a vegetarian with as many things as i can fit on it (and adding meat to it is fine)

    If you want a 'healthy' option, just don't ask for the cheese.

    so my vegetarian would have onion, capsicum, pineapple, pumpkin, tomato, spinach, mushroom, basil. if i want a poultry based option then just add chicken.
    A pizza without cheese though is perfectly fine, you actually taste more of the flavours.
    it is very weird asking for it and usually the person taking the order has to confirm it but it holds together just fine.

      If you want a 'healthy' option, just don't ask for the cheese.Healthy Pizza? What is this blasphemy you speak of?

    I'm all about the anchovies. I'll usually scan a menu and see what selections offer the 'chove.

    Pretty spoilt for Pizza where I lIve (inner west melbourne) so its authentic italian pizza - fluffy yet crispy bases with 3- 4 toppings or Pepperoni/Mexican from the standard Oz pizza joint. Its amazing how you go back for a midnight slice on a late weekend gaming session like a bee to honey...

    Last edited 10/01/17 2:14 pm

    Vegetarian. I'm not even a vegetarian but you can't beat some sugar snap peas, mushrooms, onions, capsicum and olives.

    My local takeaway has a Pizza called the Benedict Special.

    Ham, Spinach, Egg, Chorizo & Hollandaise sauce, yuuuuuuum.

      Are they open for breakfast? Sounds like a good hangover remedy.

    Another 'custom' pizza that sounds weird but it quite nice: Spaghetti Pizza. It's nothing more than Spaghetti noodles with the tomato/meat sauce baked on top of a normal pizza base with some extra cheese, but it's actually quite nice.

    But make sure the store offering it does not use tin spaghetti, you need to proper version with a thick meat sauce.

      I suppose worrying about carbs would defeat the purpose as you'd already be eating pizza.

    I am a man of simple tastes. A Margherita is all I need. Best pizza when done properly but can be bland otherwise.

    I have a mate who constantly will order a vegetarian add beef and bacon.

    For me I'm not that fussy when it comes to Pizzas. Ill give anything a go (just don't put onion on anything). But I'm really enjoying the godfather at the moment

    C'mon guys, 2017 - the future! and no vegetarian option? ;) ;)

    I really dig margheritas. If I have to have toppings, the top 3 are probably feta, olives with a third vegetable like red capsicum or eggplant or artichoke or onion.

    Can't get past an Aussie pizza. Egg, barbecue sauce and bacon

    Of all the places in the World, I had the best pizza of my life by far a few months ago at Mercado Roma in Mexico City. There's a stall called Pizzas Ummo and all their pizzas are SMOKED (Ummo/humo = smoke in Spanish). We got half 4-cheese (which had 4 cheeses obvs) and half beef short rib, which is slow-cooked pulled short rib, caramelized onion, thyme and a drizzle of some kind of amazing mustard sauce. Bubbly crispy crust all shot through with smoke, the traditional Mexican pizza garnish of a pinch of chile powder and a few drops of worcestershire... man. Nothing like it. All other pizza is irrelevant.

    On the reg I just dig cheese. Maybe some basil and Italian sausage. Get any fancier and 3 or 4 ingredients and shit gets pointless.

    Anchovies. All the way anchovies.

      Good to read the support for the magnificent anchovy.

      My usual favourite is hot salami, olives, jalapeños and anchovies. (Home made pizza of course!)
      Lately I have been tending to just make mine with spinach, capsicum and chillies.
      As for takeaway, the Dominos Chilli Beef one is excellent for the $5 - free double parmesan cheese and oregano as extras.

        Oh I love 'em. I went on a family holiday to the east coast of the US (I was a kid in the UK at the time) and had an anchovy pizza, literally just Margherita base with anchovies on and have loved them since. This was just outside Boston too and I also sampled New England Clam Chowder. Yum!

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