Everything else tasted fine, but the pizza fries were really good. They’re “I still think about them today” good.
The pizza fries adventure all started with my mother-in-law. Every time it’s one of her family member’s birthdays, she’s bound and determined to arrange a celebratory dinner at a restaurant. But, not just at any restaurant, or even one our favorite restaurants.
The birthday restaurant must include the name of the birthday person in it.
Even bad pizza is good pizza. Fortunately, the pizzas I am about to tell you about are very good pizzas.
St. Louis is known for a special, cracker-thin pizza topped with Provel cheese. St. Louis-style pizza is everywhere. Provel is everywhere, too.
Jake and I have never encountered St. Louis-style pizza or Provel anywhere else during our moves or travels. When we first visited our local grocery stores, we were surprised that about half of the frozen pizza options were St. Louis-style. And if you visit an Italian restaurant, you may find that dishes you’re used to seeing topped with mozzarella are topped with Provel. Those that dislike Provel will want to read menu descriptions carefully when ordering chicken parmesan, manicotti, and, even fish! Side salads might also arrive covered in shredded Provel, sometimes up to a 50/50 ratio of lettuce to Provel.
Eight months later and I still think about that pizza I ate at The Brick Oven Bistro in Sandusky, OH.
Last September, I drove to Ohio to join a few North Iowa Blogger friends at BloggyCon held at Cedar Point Amusement Park. With Cedar Point’s season opening quickly approaching next week, I encourage you to venture into town and enjoy a meal at The Brick Oven Bistro.
The one dinner I ate in Cedar Point was composed of a side of french fries and goopy cheese sauce. I had taken one look at the pallid, $15 burger combos being served around me and just couldn’t do it. Park food is certainly convenient, especially when you’re hungry and tired. But it’s also expensive since attendees are a captive audience. My recommendation is to budget for park snacks and beverages and head into Sandusky for dinner.
We used to complain about the 3.5 hour commute between Minneapolis and Fargo. When we moved to North Iowa, we still complained about the two-hour commute to Minneapolis. Now, we live a 9.5 hour drive away and remember how we used to complain. The drive takes most of a day, but is still cheaper than flying (and we can take the dog) so we make the best of it. Podcasts, music, and corn nuts get us through.
Friends and readers still ask me for dining suggestions as they prepare to visit the Twin Cities for various occasions. We’ve lived away for about four years, now. Restaurants have come, gone, and changed. It’s impossible to keep up. On our visits back, we often lean towards our old favorites like Broders and Bangkok Thai Deli. Our time is so limited that we have time for maybe one nice dinner out and it’s really hard to decide where to dine.
The first time Jake tried a Provel pizza he called me.
He described how he had tried to double check that his particular pizza would be topped with mozzerella instead of Provel cheese. The person who took his phone order confirmed this. When his pizza arrived, he knew something was different.
“I found myself eating around the cheese.”
This statement concerned me because Jake loves cheese. Like, a lot. All kinds. Don’t ask what percentage of our typical grocery shopping trip is composed of cheese.
Therefore, I was scared.