home     about     gas station pizza     contact

Jan 1, 2023

Old School Frozen Pizza Review - Tony's Pizza

I was walking the frozen aisle the other day as I often do, and decided to pick up a pizza. I also figured it was time for another Retro Review. The pizza of choice this time around.. Tony's!

I can count on one hand how many times I've actually eaten Tony's in my life. It's probably been fifteen years since I've last eaten it, so I really can't remember what it tasted like. I do remember I never disliked it, so I figured I'd give it a try in 2022.

At a price of $2.98, I thought two things. The first, was the excitement of getting such a bargain on a frozen pie. The next, was skepticism about how good the pie could be at such a bargain price.

25% more pizza by weight than Jack's!

Right out of the gate this thrifty pie impressed. A decent looking par baked crust with a liberal spread of sauce, cheese, and much to my surprise.. a generous spread of pepperoni.

The crust is thin, but not what I'd call super thin. It crisped up nicely and wasn't too dense or bready like many other frozen pies in this price range. The sauce was not bad either. A middle of the road sauce which isn't too sweet or too tangy, with some herbs making their way past the tomato flavor.

This pizza also had a fair amount of cheese on it, the pepperoni tasted pretty good as well. All in all I was quite surprised as to how good this pizza was. You could doctor these up easily enough, but there really is no need to do so, if it's a simple tasty pie that you crave.

The quality and value you get with this pie really is incredible. Three bucks for a decent tasting frozen pizza is some real recession busting bang for your buck! I've had worse tasting frozen pies in my day that I've spent more money for, so Tony's is a wonder in a sea of mediocre frozen pies.

I would definitely buy Tony's again, and may even work them into my regular rotation of frozen pies I keep on hand for emergencies. 

Dec 18, 2022

Quick Review: 'San Gennaro' Slice from Pizza Ponte at Disney Springs

Pizza Ponte at Disney Springs
1560 East Buena Vista Drive, Lake Buena Vista, Florida, 32830

Tomato sauce, mozzarella, fontina, sweet Italian Sausage, onions, hot cherry peppers. This is what Pizza Ponte tops their 'San Gennaro' pizza with. 

At $8.50 a slice, it places as one of the three highest priced slices on their menu. I wasn't sure how well I would like this slice when I initially spotted it at the pizzeria, but am happy to say it didn't disappoint. 

The first three bites..
Bite number one started out with a nice snappy pop, that made its way into warming my mouth up quite a bit.

Bite number two had a slice of wonderful sweet cherry peppers and sweet Italian sausage that added a whole other dimension to the pie. 

Bite number three gave way to the tomato sauce and sweet roasted onions. 

Just about every bite had some spice to it, and I loved it! I ate this slice on the coldest day of fall thus far in Florida and it definitely warmed me up! 

I will state that this slice is not the slice for you, if you are not a fan of spicy food. 

This was a nice mildly spicy slice (to me) although many folks that aren't a fan of peppers and spice would most certainly disagree with me.

Pizza Geezer rating..

5 out of 5 Slices!

I'm not sure if this style would have worked as well on their round hand tossed pies, but is absolutely perfect on Pizza Ponte's thicker square slices. I actually timed how long it took for the warmth to fade from my mouth after finishing this slice, and it was approximately fifteen minutes.

I loved this style of pizza and am officially making it my regular go-to cold weather slice at Pizza Ponte. 

If you are at Disney Springs on a cool Florida night and are craving a bite to eat that will warm you up, I definitely recommend the 'San Gennaro' slice from Pizza Ponte! 

Dec 12, 2022

'I Love NY Pizza' lunch special. Clermont, FL

I Love NY Pizza Restaurant Bar and Grill
532 Cagan Park Ave
Clermont, FL

Pre pandemic, 'I Love NY Pizza' restaurant in Clermont Florida had a heck of lunch special. Two cheese slices and a fountain drink for $4.99. Having not visited in two years, I decided it was about time to check in on them again. My how time flies.

I was ecstatic to see the old lunch special still exists and only costs one dollar more than it used to. It truly was a nice surprise, especially in our current financial climate

On this day, I opted for their $6.99 lunch special which lets you add as many toppings as you like to the slices. The fountain drink is still also included.

I ordered up one mushroom & olive and one meatball & pepperoni slice.

Initial thoughts
I realize that most 'pizza by the slice' is premade throughout the day and then thrown into the oven to crisp it up and melt the cheese, with toppings added after the fact. So seeing the little sprinkle of cheese atop the slice didn't bother me too much. They needed a little more cheese to hold all of the toppings in place after all. To get a more fluid melt, would take a longer reheat time which would overcook the crust, so you need to meet somewhere in the middle.

If the cheese sprinkle is still throwing you for a bit of a loop, don't worry. I visited the restaurant again three days later and ordered up the regular $5.99 special that offers two cheese slices, so I could share a picture of what those look like. Behold..

Thin, Crispy & Delicious

I attacked the meatball and pep slice first and was immediately in heaven. I forgot how good this crust was. Nice and complex from a decent dough rise, and super crispy. A great tomato base, and quality cheese is used. The pepperoni was good as well, but the meatballs were to die for. 

Their house-made meatballs were savory and tender. I've eaten them before with their spaghetti and have always been a big fan.

Another shot of that beautiful end crust

So all in all, one heck of a delicious deal indeed! Two delicious slices and a bottomless fountain drink for $5.99. Add some garlic knots, cheese bread or onion rings, and you're still not going to break the bank.

I highly recommend 'I Love NY Pizza' restaurant, and encourage you to give them a try if you're ever in the neighborhood. Recession busting deliciousness in a nice restaurant setting. What more can you ask for?

Dec 5, 2022

Gas Station Pizza Review - Casey's in Little Rock, AR

I've heard great things about Casey's Pizza, and have always wanted to try it out. While in Arkansas recently, I finally got my chance! I'm happy to say that the pizza exceeded my expectations in almost every way.

Right out of the pizza warmers, the slices smelled and looked wonderful. I opted for a BBQ Brisket and a sausage slice on this particular day.

The BBQ Brisket Pizza
BBQ sauce, smoked chopped brisket, jalapenos, red onions, real mozzarella and cheddar cheeses, finished with a ranch drizzle. 

This pizza was great! Super tasty, with a nice little spicy bite. The brisket was incredible and added a beautiful smoky depth to the slice. 

The ranch drizzle really was the icing on the pie, tamping down the spiciness of the jalapenos and helping the cheese and barbecue sauce jive together nicely .

Sausage Pizza
This slice had a classic marinara sauce and was topped with Casey's signature mild sausage and real mozzarella cheese. All ingredients were great, and the sauce had a great snappy flavor, seasoned nicely with herbs.

I can't say enough nice things about Casey's pizza. They pride themselves on offering freshly made pizzas, with crust that is made from scratch.

That being said, I could tell the crust on both pies were pre made, which is understandable. I don't rightly expect any convenience store to have a dedicated dough making person that makes the dough in-house everyday. Maybe they do this somewhere, although I can't imagine where. 

Mind you, the crust was decent. It was way better than your run of the mill convenience store pizza crust. It did have some real pull to it, but wasn't tough. 

At first glance, the crust really has a bit of an artisan look to it, more so than your traditional convenience store pizza crusts. It was cooked well, had a nice crispy consistency, but lacked some depth in the flavor department. 

The end crust was a wee bit dense, with little alveolation to it. It worked well for the bottom crust, especially with the saucier BBQ slice, but I really would have liked to see a bit more airy spring to the end crust.

Pizza Geezer rating..
as far as gas station pizza goes

5 out of 5 Slices

This is without a doubt, the best convenience store pizza I've eaten since embarking upon these 'Gas Station Pizza Reviews'. While Casey's currently has over 2,147 stores in 17 states, Florida is sadly not one of them.

I did not get to try Casey's Limited time offering The Ultimate Beer Cheese Breakfast Pizza, and I am going to be haunted by this for some time.

Casey's stores are spread mostly across the Midwest and plains states, both of which I travel across yearly. Therefore, I look forward to doing more of these reviews during future road trips.

If you have any Casey's pizza varieties you are crazy about, I'd love to hear about them. Feel free to drop your recommendations and thoughts in the comment section below.

Nov 28, 2022

1980s Fort Collins pizza restaurants that are gone but not forgotten

Just as there weren't many options for Mexican Food Restaurants in Fort Collins, Colorado back in the 1980s, there also weren't nearly as many pizzeria's back in the day. During my drive home today, I started trying to compile a mental list of the pizza joints I remember as a kid. I thought it would be fun to list them here for posterity. 

Listed below are the pizza places I remember from 1980s Fort Collins. Please chime in if you remember a Fort Collins pizza place that's not listed here, and I will add it to my list!

Defunct 1980s Fort Collins Pizza Restaurants.. 

Showbiz Pizza Place

I loved this place when I was a kid. It was the restaurant equivalent to Disneyland for me. I believe it opened in 1980 and eventually turned into a Chuck E. Cheese. You can read an article I wrote on my Retro Blog entitled: Memories of SHOWBIZ Pizza Place

Panhandler's Pizza

Delicious pan style pizza that never disappointed. I believe there were two locations in Fort Collins, but my family's favorite store was the location in the Campus West area by Colorado State University. You can read an article I wrote about them on my Retro Blog here..
Memories of Panhandler's Pizza

Shakey's Pizza

While Shakey's definitely lost its charm as a themed restaurant over the years, they still had great pie, and always had a great assortment of video games to play in the 80s. You can read more about just how incredible this restaurant was during its heyday, in a recent article I wrote called:
70s and 80s Memories of Shakey's Pizza Parlor


Located at 2635 S. College Ave. This was my family's go-to pizzeria during much of the 80s. The pizza tasted amazing and the restaurant had a simple, yet fun atmosphere. I expressly remember a huge yellow airplane that resembled an early 1900s bi-plane, that was suspended from the ceiling. I don't believe there was any other theming like that in the restaurant, but for some strange reason it worked and didn't look out of place. I must have spent hours peering up at that plane during my childhood.

My brother always started out the evening by pumping quarters into the jukebox, while I would procure a spot at the Pac-Man video game table to play a few rounds before dinner. I had no clue Big Cheese was a chain restaurant until many years later. In fact, I believe there are still locations in different states like New Mexico, Florida and Washington just to name a few.

The Upper Crust

I can't remember too much about the Upper Crust, other than getting it delivered on occasion. I know it was a chain (possibly a local one) with stores in neighboring towns like Greeley. If I remember correctly, they had a store located on 1012 S. College Ave. near the old Historic Fort Collins High School. I do remember their pizza tasting pretty dang good. 

I always got a kick out of my Dad working at barber shop called 'The Upper Cut' before opening his own barber shop in Old Town Fort Collins that he operated for twenty some-odd years. As a young boy, I often fantasized about him working at the Upper Crust and bringing home free pizza.

Old Chicago
(Old Town Location)
Old Chicago opened up in the late 80s and closed in 2018. They had some great tasting pizza and were responsible for opening my eyes to the world of craft beer. The love of craft beer I developed there, set me on a path of homebrewing that has spanned close to thirty years.

Vinny's Pizza

This one wasn't around for a super long time. It opened in the mid 80s and was located in the old University Plaza Mall at 2229 S. College Ave. Serving up thin slices of New York style pie, this pizzeria is where I bought pizza by the slice for the very first time in Colorado.

Vinnie's Pizza
This place was almost directly across from SHOWBIZ Pizza. I remember the pizza having an incredible crust and the sauce having a nice pop, but what I really miss was a menu item called 'Gator Bread'.

Cozzola's Pizza
Dave Cozzola opened his incredible pizza restaurant in 1987. While the original store in Old Town is now closed, there is another at 1112 Oakridge Drive. Cozzola's Pizza was a real treat. Fresh made, braided crust, and superior ingredients won this pizzeria recognition year after year as the 'Best Pizza in Fort Collins'. Dave Cozzola was a customer at my Dad's barbershop for years, so my family got super acquainted with his restaurant just down the road from my Dad's shop. 

Sox and Cubs Pizza & Subs
I remember stopping in at this place near the indoor flea markets on North College Ave., when I felt like a thick and chewy slice of pizza. They had a spicy pizza on their menu that I really loved. The restaurant felt like it was owned by baseball fanatics (Chicago fans of course) and sports decor reflecting this was everywhere throughout the establishment. 

I remember them often hosting Strat-O-Matic tournaments in the restaurant. Strat-O-Matic was/is a table top baseball simulation board game that you can play by yourself or with others. The restaurant would be full of hobbyists participating in tournaments. My brother was a huge fan of this game growing up, so I always enjoyed peeking in on the fun, as the enthusiasts had their showdowns. 

Godfather's Pizza
If you loved massive amounts of cheese on your pizza, Godfather's was the place for you. The commercials I remember seeing in the 80s boasted about their five pound pizzas with one full pound of cheese. The original location we used to frequent was in the Foothills plaza, across the parking lot from the old Foothills Fashion Mall, not too far from the old 'Foothills Twin' movie theater. Years later in the 90s, another store was opened on Lemay Avenue by Albertson's. That store featured a lunch buffet and while the pizza was decent, corporate rebranding had greatly changed the style of pizzas they were known for back in the 80s.

That's all I can remember for now, but will definitely update this list if more pizza places come to mind. There are definitely a few more I'm foggy on, so maybe I just need a reminder. Fort Collins has always felt like a revolving door for restaurants, so I'm sure I've missed a few places up and above the ones I mentioned.

If you can think of any pizzerias that were open between the years of 1980 and 1990 that are not listed here, feel free to comment below and help jog my memory. Thanks!

Review - 'Funghi Pizza' at Pizza Ponte in Disney Springs, FL

Pizza Ponte at Disney Springs
1560 East Buena Vista Drive, Lake Buena Vista, Florida, 32830

Pizza Ponte's 'Funghi Pizza' sports tomato, mozzarella, fontina, and forest mushrooms. 

It's a wonderful slice any mushroom lover would enjoy and I highly recommend it. Lets breakdown what this slice has to offer..

The Crust
Light and soft with a crispy underside, and a nice char around the edge. A decent amount of pull at the end crust, but not tough by any means.

The sauce
(stated as tomato on the menu) was nice and mild, which let the other toppings shine.

The Cheese
This blend was delicious and of good quality. It wasn't too salty or overpowering and complimented the crust and mushrooms very nicely.

The star of this slice for me was the forest mushrooms. They weren't rubbery or salty, and were a pretty good size as well.

Pizza Geezer rating..

5 out of 5 Slices!

The price of $8.20 a slice may deter some, but believe it or not, this is actually a very good deal in comparison to pizza slice prices at the local theme parks these days! 

For most people, this slice and a drink turns out to be a decent sized meal. I myself could eat two slices, but I have a pretty large appetite. My wife or daughter however are feeling stuffed after eating a single slice.

This is such a nicely balanced pizza. Not too rich, with every ingredient playing off of the next perfectly. If you are a mushroom lover, I highly recommend grabbing a slice next time you are a Disney Springs.

Nov 21, 2022

Review - G's NY Pizza in Clermont Florida

Pizza Geezer rating..

5 out of 5 Slices!

I realized today, that I have never officially written a review for the pizzeria I frequent most often in Clermont Florida. I guess it's due time to remedy that. 

I won't get too in depth with the full blown details on aesthetics, ingredients, etc. Instead, I'll share a few thoughts, facts, and a few photos from the hundreds I've taken over the years.

G's is an authentic NY Style Pizzeria through and through.  Great hand tossed pies made with great ingredients.   

The owner Peter Fiorino grew up in Valley Street New York, and was on the 2007 United States Pizza Team, so the guy definitely has skills.  

I can count on one hand, the times he hasn't been in the pizzeria during my visits in the last year.  He makes a mean pie, and definitely takes pride in his craft.

They have a great menu as well. Whether its a salad, sandwich, Calzone, Stromboli, or Parmigiana dinner, I've never had a bad meal at G's.  

Do you have a sweet tooth?  I IMPLORE YOU to try their Cannoli! Always freshly filled after you order them, the shells are crisp, and not dense like other places that pre make and refrigerate them. Check them out below..

G's is my go-to Pizzeria for New York Style Pizza, and it's not because it's so close to home (that's just a blessing).  

It's a nice little shop (and I do stress the word little) because I believe there are a total of three tables inside.  Two of them seat up to four people, and the other seats two, so max capacity is about ten or eleven people. 


I always try to go early to miss the lunch crowd, but am always ready to not have a place to sit.  In that instance I will order it to-go, and hope for a table to open up, otherwise I eat my pizza outside, or in my car.  

Still.. totally worth the minor challenge, because their food is so incredibly good. Check them out. You won't be sorry.

or in person..

G's NY Pizza - 12346 Roper Blvd. 
Clermont, Florida