Since moving to Chicago, I’ve been a fairly devoted Giordano’s fan, but I only order their thin-crust. (I think it’s something about their blend of cheeses. There seems to be a lot of Provolone in there, which helps satisfy my craving for 300% of my recommended daily sodium allowance in a single meal.) However, Giordano’s has a few shortcomings. First, delivery time for any type of pizza—even thin crust—is always one hour. Second, Giordano’s prices are enough to make a normal gay man balk, let alone the cheapest gay man in America.
I’ve been meaning to give Domino’s new recipe a try if only to reward them for their painfully honest new ad campaign that addresses the company’s long-standing reputation for producing America’s most forgettable pizza. So, when I saw a commercial last night promising two two-topping medium pizzas for $5.99 each, I was on dominos.com placing my order faster than you can say, “Gosh, this special was really meant for a family of four, but I did six minutes of uninterrupted aerobic exercise today and I deserve an entire medium pizza with double pepperoni.”
As you may have guessed from the title of this post, the pizza was pretty good. Good enough to order again, but not so amazing that I don’t still wish I had a Papa John’s a little closer to home. (You can take the boy out of the South…) The best part was the new and improved crust. It included a mix of Parmesan cheese and herbs that definitely merited finger licking. The sauce was better than I remember it being in the past and my significant other thought the whole package was a huge improvement. I still have a few reservations, primarily because I’m not a big fan of hand-tossed crust. I’m not sure if it’s always so soft and doughy everywhere, but it was definitely not crispy on the bottom. Also, the boxes were already grease-stained when they arrived and by the end of the night, they looked like the scene of some kind of gory grease murder-suicide.
I have to say that Domino’s deserves a standing ovation for is its online ordering experience. The interface design was great, and it featured a final screen that showed the status of your order. This screen featured several stages, with the current stage illuminated. Stage one showed that the order was being prepared and included the name of the person making the pizza. Stage two showed that the pizza was baking. Stage three showed it was undergoing a rigorous quality check. Stage four showed that the pizza was out for delivery and included the name of the driver and exact time it was moved to car. The final stage confirmed the pizza had been delivered. Initially, I was a bit freaked out when the pizza hadn’t arrived and the stage-five light blinked on and displayed a message stating, “Your pizza has arrived. We hope you’re enjoying your meal!” But, before I could call Domino’s and scream in a panic that my pizza had been stolen, the driver was at the door. Now if they could just embed a small, edible GPS in every pizza and allow me to track its progress on Google Maps, I could stop leaving the house altogether.