The young chefs have traded in their kitchen whites for cheery red and blue T-shirts, and their energetic chatter permeates the pizza parlor, where they work together to create unique pies. They dapple rounds of dough with boundary-pushing ingredients that range from alligator sausage and marinated steak to spicy peanut sauce and noodles. This dedication to whipping up peculiar pizzas—as well as pastas, sandwiches, and wings—is part of Pizza Schmizza’s mission to foster a relaxed, whimsical dining experience for everyone who sidles up to their counter. This family-friendly, merry environment helped earn the homegrown business more than 20 locations across the Pacific Northwest, making Pizza Schmizza franchises as easy to find as the Space Needle in a haystack.
You don't mess with good dough. It’s a lesson the Perfect Pizza Company owners learned the hard way when they tried to add butter to Head Chef Anthony Hartmeier's tried and trusted recipe. They recounted how their failed dough experiment forced them to throw away 58 balls of the unstretchable stuff but restored their unwavering faith in the expertise of the Oregon-born Hartmeier.
Today, the owners concern themselves with the quality of the pizzeria's ingredients and service and let the chefs flex their creativity in the kitchen. Hartmeier's famous hand-tossed crusts get topped with whole-milk Bacio mozzarella and emerge from a brick oven brimming with a unique and diverse smattering of toppings. Specialties include pies such as the Perfect Chicken pizza, which swaps out red sauce for alfredo sauce and includes generous sprinklings of red onion, grilled chicken, feta, and bacon bits.
Tabletop candles cast a mild glow around Cafe Allegro's quaint dining space, where authentic Italian pastas, sandwiches, and hearth-baked pizzas convey the restaurant's 15 years of culinary mastery in every mouthful. Cream sauces, marsala marinara, meats, and fresh vegetables top a latticework of traditional pastas, and calzones swell with myriad ingredients and pride at no longer taking a back seat to pizza. Glasses full of Italian wines reflect the twinkling bulbs that frame the bistro's windows, and a banquet room with an outdoor patio hosts festive events.
Garlic Jim's menu was handcrafted with nothing more than a dream and an incredible reserve of pizza-making expertise. Open an order with some gourmet chicken wings, available in barbecue, garlic, and buffalo hot, before moving on to pizza territory. Put an end to eating Legos by piecing together a custom pie. Choose from the hand-thrown thick, garlic thin, or gluten-free crusts, slathered in one of seven sauces (from classic red to zesty chipotle pesto) or olive oil, and then slap on any of 15 standard and 11 gourmet toppings (14-inch large pizzas start at $12.59, gluten-free crust $15.59, each additional topping $1.50). To achieve customization without the stress of having to choose, turn to one of the pre-determined specialties. Meat-maul hunger with the Hercules (salami, pepperoni, Canadian bacon, beef, spicy Italian sausage, and bacon, $18.99 for large thick crust, $21.99 for gluten-free), or discover the secret of pizza-temperature fusion in your head with Jim's bacon-cheeseburger pizza (beef, bacon, red onions, tomatoes, mozzarella, and cheddar, $18.99 for large thick crust, $21.99 for gluten-free).