At Simple Simon’s Pizza, pies are anything but simple. The kitchen can whip up traditional pizzas, such as the Hawaiian and the green-pepper-and-sausage-bedecked Supreme, but the chefs really use their culinary imaginations when it comes to the house-specialty pizzas, which come topped with anything from hamburger and pickles to lettuce and potato chips. Simple Simon’s ovens also bake up calzones and stromboli. Chicken wings in flavors such as barbecue, Cajun, or hot wings round out the menu, along with desserts such as sweet bites of breadsticks wearing a cinnamon and icing disguise.
On street corners from Texas to North Carolina, Johnny Brusco's Pizza serves up piping-hot slices of New York, and that's not whistling Dixie. It's not even kazooing Yankee. The franchise boasts a lineage that stretches back to 1965, when pie-smith Johnny Pace opened up his pizzeria just outside of Syracuse. Though the menu stays true to Johnny's classic style, today's crust-tossers aren't afraid to switch things up in modern style. Gluten-watchers can dig into a flour-free variant of the crust, and their specialties include such daring choices as a cream cheese pizza, a Philly-esque steak and cheese, and a zesty gourmet pie with spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, black olives, and artichokes. Outside of the round stuff, diners might select a summery strawberry-pecan salad, a classic plate of bruschetta with pesto, mozzarella, and marinara sauce, and a finger-licking dessert of cinna-knots.
Wheat State Pizza!’s whole-wheat or white crusts host homemade sauces and flavorful jumbles of more than 30 toppings. Like the Christmas list of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, the menu includes 15 types of specialty pizza ($10.99–$19.99), each of which can be constructed atop a hand-tossed or thin crust. A velvety blend of alfredo sauce, chicken, mushrooms, mozzarella, and bacon tops the chicken carbonara, and the Mediterranean sails taste buds to the Old World aboard a fleet of green olives, sundried tomatoes, and crumbled feta cheese. Diners can opt to build their own pie ($8.99–$16.99 for one-topping pizza; $1.29–$1.99 per additional topping) from eclectic ingredients such as pepperoni, cashews, and avocado. A medley of dessert pizzas ($7.99–$15.99) layers wheat crust with classic ingredients such as cream-cheese frosting, apple-pie filling, and Betty Crocker break-dancing.