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Best Frozen Pizza


Joe H
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Bellatoria which is a "roadshow" pizza being offered for the week (Saturday is the LAST day) at the Costco in Sterling. I believe there are NO other Costcos which stock this-it is ONLY the Sterling location. I am eating a slice as I type this and I (who raves about Sally's, Pepe's, Bebo, American Flatbread, Il Pizzaiola (Firenze), da Michele (Napoli) etc.) cannot believe that I like this enough to post about it. But it is good. Actually, it is real, real good. Embarassingly good. And, as I understand it, because it is a "roadshow" if they don't sell enough they won't carry it again. Ever!

Go buy this damned frozen pie!!!!!! Now. Tonight. Today. And buy a lot of it!!!! It's three boxes for $10.99...note the shame as I type this: three boxes for $10.99...for frozen pizza. Whoa!!!! (Can cheap and frozen really taste THAT good?)

Have I really sunk this low? Can any pizza, any f-r-o-z-e-n pizza be worth such humiliation?

Well, actually....now that I've taken another bite...yes. It's a damned good pie, frozen or not! http://www.bellatoriapizza.com/products_intro.htm

Buy the vegetable or the "supreme." Add a sprinkling of olive oil and several shakes of oregano and basil and bake it @425 on a pizza stone with the last minute or so @550 degrees. Frozen pizza (ugh! still can't believe I'm typing this!) can't possibly taste this good...but it does.

And, no I have no investment in or a relationship to the company that makes this. Just the sincere belief that it is a whole helluva lot better than even Domino's and it's a fraction of the price!!!

...oh, the shame of a post like this!

frozen pizza...have I sunk this low?

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A follow up to the above post: The Sterling Costco sold out of this frozen pizza every day of the roadshow long before they had expected to. My wife and I have now eaten all but one of the six I bought just last Friday. On Monday I stopped at the Sterling store again and asked if they would be getting any more in. The "front manager" told me they didn't know but agreed that it had sold very, very well for them. I asked if she knew if any more Costco's in the area would feature this on a roadshow and she didn't know. She directed me to their corporate buyer who I reached on the phone later that afternoon. I was told that this was the single best selling pizza in their stores in the part of the midwest where it was offered. In fact it far outsold all other pizzas in those stores and this is all the more remarkable since Costco sells more pizza in the midwest than anywhere else in North America. (The largest frozen pizza section of any grocery store I have ever been in was at Woodman's outside of Chicago.) They had three roadshows the previous week and all three were enormously successful. Yet, she didn't know if they would continue to carry it here. They hadn't made that decision yet. Reading between the lines I am guessing that they will need reassurance that Bellatoria can ramp up to provide the volume they will need. After talking to her I called Bellatoria and reached their sales manager. The farthest east that they sell their pizza is in grocery stores in Michigan. In the midwest Cub Foods is a primary outlet. As for Bellatoria they very badly want to come East with them.

After eating all or part of five of Bellatoria's frozen pizzas I sincerely believe that this frozen pizza is better than most pizzaria pizza in the D. C. area. No, of course it's not on par with Two Amy's, American Flatbread, Bebo, Comet, etc. But it is much better than anything delivered by anyone and better than a lot of wood burning ovens I've had locally. If anyone finds this bake it @425 on a pizza stone and then finish it for the last minute or so under the broiler. Also, sprinkle good olive oil and additonal oregano and basil on it as well as adding additional thinly sliced sweet onion before baking it. The pizzas we tried are the Supreme (pepperoni, sausage, green pepper and onion) and roasted vegetable.

I have one left and refuse to sell it on EBay.

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Their flatbread looks really good! Thanks for sharing. These should show their pizza... http://www.bellatoriapizza.com/products_intro.htm

Damn, I'm hungry!

I take it this stuff is mostly available in the upper Midwest, within a reasonable trucking distance of Chicago and Minnesota. How far away from there do they actually get? Is the Washington area a new frontier, or do the get even further afield, like Western NC for example!

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Based on the praise heaped on American Flatbread by everyone (I haven't been yet), I would assume that the pizza that you get in Ashburn is light years different than the frozen one I bought at Whole Foods last night. The crust was nice and crispy, but the pizza was over-cheesed and under-sauced, remaining shockingly bland despite the presence of onions and mushrooms on it. The pizza was so bad I laid strips of hot soppressata on top to give it some life, but I don't think anything could save this clunker.

I really need to get out at some point to give the restaurant a try, but I do not understand why they would sell frozen pizzas in grocery stores that would appear to be nowhere close to the level of the product they are putting out in their locations.

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Based on the praise heaped on this place by everyone (I haven't been yet), I would assume that the pizza that you get in Ashburn is light years different than the frozen one I bought at Whole Foods last night. The crust was nice and crispy, but the pizza was over-cheesed and under-sauced, remaining shockingly bland despite the presence of onions and mushrooms on it. The pizza was so bad I laid strips of hot soppressata on top to give it some life, but I don't think anything could save this clunker.

I really need to get out at some point to give the restaurant a try, but I do not understand why they would sell frozen pizzas in grocery stores that would appear to be nowhere close to the level of the product they are putting out in their locations.

Which "flavor" did you get? I'm curious because I think, as frozen pies go, the AF product is the best out there. I usually just get the plain cheese.

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Which "flavor" did you get? I'm curious because I think, as frozen pies go, the AF product is the best out there. I usually just get the plain cheese.

The one I got had carmelized onions, mushrooms, cheese and herbs. At $10, it was a colossal disappointment.

For full disclosure, I do not remember the last time I had a frozen pizza prior to last night, so maybe my expectations were just too high because it was American Flatbread? I don't know.

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The one I got had carmelized onions, mushrooms, cheese and herbs. At $10, it was a colossal disappointment.
That's the "Revolution." I can't think of a better frozen pizza. Definitely not as good as getting it fresh, but still #1 in quality as far as frozen pizzas go; and definitely no where NEAR a "colossal disappointment."
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That's the "Revolution." I can't think of a better frozen pizza. Definitely not as good as getting it fresh, but still #1 in quality as far as frozen pizzas go; and definitely no where NEAR a "colossal disappointment."

Sorry, Dan, for me it really was. It was in desperate need of SOMETHING to give it some flavor; tomato sauce, more herbs, a stronger onion flavor, etc.

Again, I can't really comment on it as compared to other frozen pizzas as I really never buy them, but at $10, this should have been much more than it was.

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Sorry, Dan, for me it really was. It was in desperate need of SOMETHING to give it some flavor; tomato sauce, more herbs, a stronger onion flavor, etc.

Again, I can't really comment on it as compared to other frozen pizzas as I really never buy them, but at $10, this should have been much more than it was.

Don't know what to tell ya.

Don - should this be moved to a new topic in the Shopping and Cooking forum, since it's about the frozen pies made by the Vermont location and sold in the grocery store, rather than the restaurant itself?

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For full disclosure, I do not remember the last time I had a frozen pizza prior to last night, so maybe my expectations were just too high because it was American Flatbread? I don't know.

Well, you'll have to take my word for it that I'm an expert in the frozen pizza field ;)

You're correct-- lower expectations are in order. They is what they is.

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You might want to try the new line of Kashi frozen pizzas. I think they're better (and are healthier) than American Flatbread... AF is kind of bland and their toppings aren't spread well or abundantly enough for my liking.

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You might want to try the new line of Kashi frozen pizzas. I think they're better (and are healthier) than American Flatbread... AF is kind of bland and their toppings aren't spread well or abundantly enough for my liking.

I've tried a couple of Kashi pies. They're pretty good and they do seem to have more toppings which makes me wonder if they're truly "healthier". I'd be curious to look at the nutritional factoids side by side.

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I've tried a couple of Kashi pies. They're pretty good and they do seem to have more toppings which makes me wonder if they're truly "healthier". I'd be curious to look at the nutritional factoids side by side.

You read nutritional factoids on frozen pizzas?

Better than actually eating them, I suppose. ;)

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I actually prefer the Amy's pies to all of these. And, I believe they are a bit more nutritious (and, yes, I read the nutritional labels on all such food - no use wasting calories on food that doesn't taste that great).

And, Jeff and I always split one of the pies and supplement with a salad. Yes, we could certainly eat more happily, but why bother.

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The main elements of an unhealthy pizza are the white flour crust and cheese. Kashi pizzas have whole/multi grain crusts and when I say they have more toppings, I'm not referring to them having more cheese. Admittedly, I haven't compared the nutritional labels, but the ONLY thing healthy about an AF pizza is a little bit of wheat germ thrown in with the white flour crust. Kashi has more veggie toppings (it seems) and a whole/multi-grain crust. An AF pizza has 45 grams of fat- that's almost a pint of Ben Jerry's.

In the end, I guess who cares... it's pizza for pete's sake. I still prefer the taste of the Kashi, no matter which is better for you.

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I never bother to ingest any kind of pre-fab frozen pizza. It's not worth the calories to me. I'm either getting my outside of the home or making my own fresh. Frozen Pizza? Blech!
If the options are starving, ignoring the baby's scream while I spend the time to make up a real pizza, or sticking an Amy's pizza in the oven, I choose Amy's.
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If the options are starving, ignoring the baby's scream while I spend the time to make up a real pizza, or sticking an Amy's pizza in the oven, I choose Amy's.

Which brings up the issue of why there's no good delivery pizza in this town...

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At the risk of being excommunicated from DR...the Brooklyn style pizza from Dominos is not terribly offensive. Plus, I get mesmerized by the Pizza Tracker while I wait for it to arrive at my door. ;)

Your last paycheck is in the mail. Good luck with your future endeavors.

I just had my first Amy's frozen pizza the other day. Pretty decent, I thought. (Then again, it shared freezer space with a bag of pizza rolls. I'll be waiting for my pink slip as well...)

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The shameful truth is coming out. Come on folks, you know you've burned the roof of your mouth on a Stouffer's French Bread pizza or two!

The first step is admitting you have a problem.

Man, used to make my own french bread pizzas -- excellent use for the leftover sauce after one of those college-era (which in my case lasted many, many years) pasta fests.

Also, english muffin pizzas.

Both excelent alternatives to the frozen pies.

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The shameful truth is coming out. Come on folks, you know you've burned the roof of your mouth on a Stouffer's French Bread pizza or two! The first step is admitting you have a problem.
OK, fine, I'll put my head on the chopping block. I like California Pizza Kitchen thin crust frozen pizzas--especially the white pizza (lots of garlic and spinach) and the margherita. The new Four Cheese version I had a couple of weeks ago too was pretty good, but I'll withhold judgment until I've had at least another one. I avoid the meat versions and smaller thick-crust versions. No, they won't make you forget 2 Amys or Pizzeria Paradiso, but really, they're not bad.

OK, have at me. I get it, that's the textbook Washington game (brushes off shoulders). That's what you got to do. But that's also exactly why I'm posting--to change that kind of food politics.

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At the risk of being excommunicated from DR...the Brooklyn style pizza from Dominos is not terribly offensive. Plus, I get mesmerized by the Pizza Tracker while I wait for it to arrive at my door. ;)

So if it's not terribly offensive, is it kind of terribly offensive? :)

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Man, used to make my own french bread pizzas -- excellent use for the leftover sauce after one of those college-era (which in my case lasted many, many years) pasta fests.

French bread pizza is one of the few meals that Jonathan will make. It's pretty amusing for me, getting elbowed out of the way in the kitchen, so that he can take charge of the preparation. We had it just the other night, on Marvelous Market striata bread, with leftover homemade (by me of course) marinara sauce, Italian mozzarella di bufala, charcoal roasted peppers, and sauteed mushrooms and onions. Topped with reggiano parmesan and fresh basil at the table. Quite delicious, actually. Nothing to sneer at at all.

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If the options are starving, ignoring the baby's scream while I spend the time to make up a real pizza, or sticking an Amy's pizza in the oven, I choose Amy's.

You can always pick up a pie from a joint (whose pie you love) that has carry out on the way home.... Couldn't be easier!

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The shameful truth is coming out. Come on folks, you know you've burned the roof of your mouth on a Stouffer's French Bread pizza or two!

The first step is admitting you have a problem.

I have to admit that i have a fondness for the frechetta three cheese. i like the crust--it's like garlic breadsticks. i also got a rick bayless one from whole foods once--it had cilantro and ginger in the sauce, which i love as that's how my mom always made "indianized" pizza at home.

I don't actually compare frozen pizza to "real" pizza. i think it's sort of its own thing, and when you come home at 9 pm after working a very long day, you begin to appreciate it more. especially if you don't have great delivery options.

I do agree though that carry out from your favorite place is the best option, luckily i live by bebo, and used to work near the alexandria faccia luna, which i think is notably better than the others....

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I don't actually compare frozen pizza to "real" pizza. i think it's sort of its own thing, and when you come home at 9 pm after working a very long day, you begin to appreciate it more. especially if you don't have great delivery options.

amen...

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Unfortunately, there is no decent pizza to be found in my five-block walk home. If there were, I would weigh much more than I do.

Life has a way of balancing things out. You're lucky to have such a super-short commute that you are now required to eat frozen pizza. (just kidding!) ;)

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OK, fine, I'll put my head on the chopping block. I like California Pizza Kitchen thin crust frozen pizzas--especially the white pizza (lots of garlic and spinach) and the margherita. The new Four Cheese version I had a couple of weeks ago too was pretty good, but I'll withhold judgment until I've had at least another one.
You just found out how I get rid of leftover chicken. I take one of those margheritas and shred up the chicken, sprinkle with baby spinach and cherry tomatoes. Sometimes I am in the mood for that cracker thin style crust over my homemade stuff.
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You just found out how I get rid of leftover chicken. I take one of those margheritas and shred up the chicken, sprinkle with baby spinach and cherry tomatoes. Sometimes I am in the mood for that cracker thin style crust over my homemade stuff.

While I find consumption of frozen pizza perfectly forgiveable, chicken on a pizza is an abomination!

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btw- I think one of the reasons why I like the Kashi pizza so much is because I swear the crust is par-baked. The Kashi crust was perfectly cooked- didn't taste like it was pre-cooked at all. I know that some of Amy's crusts are basically focaccia crusts, considering all of the olive oil they put in.

Costco used to sell a real good organic thin crust pizza from Colorado. I can't remember the name of it, though.

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I remember about fifteen? twenty? years ago when Wolfgang Puck revolutionized the mass-market frozen pizza industry with expensive, single-sized, gourmet pizzas. I remember talking with my friend Josh Raynolds (one heck of a good wine writer, btw) probably back in the early 1990s, and his exact words were, "and they're damned good pizzas, aren't they." They were!

Are they still?

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I remember about fifteen? twenty? years ago when Wolfgang Puck revolutionized the mass-market frozen pizza industry with expensive, single-sized, gourmet pizzas. I remember talking with my friend Josh Raynolds (one heck of a good wine writer, btw) probably back in the early 1990s, and his exact words were, "and they're damned good pizzas, aren't they." They were!

Are they still?

Sorry DR, but the web site for the Wolfgang Puck empire has this foreboding statement on it, "These delicious pizzas are temporarily not available in stores." And even more interestng, the web site urges us to "stay alert for when Wolfgang Puck gourmet frozen pizzas make a come back to a store near you." As they might say in his neighborhood in LA, looks like his frozen pizza has gone on hiatus.

Oooh . . . just noticed with this post I became a grouper!!!

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