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Papa John’s – S. Westnedge

February 9, 2010

  • 5140 S. Westnedge Avenue
  • Portage, MI 49002
  • (269) 343-7272
  • Website
  • Menu

There’s something about Snowmageddon that makes me want pizza.  The last big snowstorm we had, I ordered Domino’s new pizza.  This time, I craved something from my childhood. 

Papa John’s is a Louisville based chain that has four stores in the Kalamazoo area.  As you can probably guess, there are stores near where I grew up too.  Yeah, it was a half hour away, but so was everything else.  I grew up in a tiny town in eastern Illinois.  How tiny, you ask?  750 people….no, I didn’t forget a zero. 

Needless to say, there weren’t many options when it came to dining out.  There’s a family restaurant located near the Interstate.  There was an Italian place on Main Street and the gas station in town cooked up some pretty unspectacular pizzas.  The closest McDonald’s was twenty minutes away as was the nearest mega-mart, so it was nothing to drive a half hour for a pizza.  It’s just what we did.

Anyway, back to today.  I saw an ad on the Super Bowl for Papa John’s, but it wasn’t specific.  I got on the website and found out that if you ordered a large cheese pizza, you got three free toppings…the same as the number of touchdowns the Saints scored. 

This time, I called J over to the computer to ask her what toppings she would like on the pizza.  I made that mistake last time and just got her plain cheese. 

What I ended up doing was splitting up our three toppings.  I ordered the large cheese then got pepperoni on my half.  On the whole pizza, I got bacon and the three cheese blend.  The great thing about Papa John’s is they give you a few choices to make the pizza just the way we like. 

I went with the thin crust pizza which would be great as is, but there’s also an option to get the pizza “well done” and cut into squares.  The chain may be from Kentucky, but that’s how we like to eat our pizza on the southside of Chicago.  I was really excited to see those options. 

I added on a cinnapie and hit the checkout button.  Papajohns.com isn’t nearly as slick or user-friendly as dominos.com, but after a few attempts, I finally figured out what to do. 

I chose the carry-out option mainly because I had no idea how quick a delivery driver could get around.  Since I have four-wheel drive, I knew I could there and home probably quicker than it would take someone who has a delivery or two. 

The Papa John’s I chose is right on South Westnedge in Portage across the street from the Meijer.  It’s part of a small strip mall with a very narrow parking lot.  I pulled off a snow covered Westnedge into a snow-covered parking lot.  The four-wheel drive really helped. 

The inside of the store is pretty typical for a carry-out pizza place.  There’s an order counter that fronts the kitchen.  The narrow lobby has room for one bench if you have to wait.  I actually did have to wait which made me a little happy.  At least I know my pizza came right out of the oven. 

I had already paid online using my credit card, so I didn’t have to worry about that in store.  The total for the large pizza and the cinnapie was just a little $14.  Had I opted for delivery, there was a $2 charge in addition to the tip. 

I got home and I think J was a little surprised by what we had.  The thing everyone seems to know Papa John’s for is the dipping sauce.  You eat the pizza then dip the crust in the garlic sauce that comes with it.  The thin crust doesn’t come with the dipping sauce because there really isn’t any crust.  The pizza is a super thin crust that had a really crunchy bottom….just the way we like it.  There was a lot of bacon on the middle of the pizza and I think J contemplated taking a piece with pepperoni just because all the meat had that almost burnt crunch to it.  Again, something else we both like.  When I was little, my family always ordered a pizza for me, my brother, and my mom then another thin crust for my dad.  We always thought he was dumb because he couldn’t dip his crust.  Turns out, it was us who was missing out.  This pizza was really good.  It may even beat out Cottage Inn as our go-to delivery chain.

The cinnapie is what you would expect it to be.  It was a small pizza crust with cinnamon sugar and icing.  I opted for the extra icing which I probably could have done with out it.  It was pretty sweet and very filling.  We left a few pieces for later which I ate while watching the MSU/Purdue game earlier this evening.  It was good, but fairly typical.  This particular product is something that is hard to screw up.  Cinnamon sugar tastes good on almost anything.

Papa John’s exceeded expectations.  They have a thin crust pizza that actually has a crispy crunch and they earn bonus points for having the well-done, and cut into squares options.  On top of that, the price was right.  I know it was a special, but it’s hard to beat $9 for a large three topping pizza.  The same at one of the local gourmet places would have been at if not over $20. 

Large Bacon & Pepperoni Thin Crust Pizza

Cinnapie

Papa John's Pizza on Urbanspoon

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Jennifer permalink
    October 17, 2011 10:24 pm

    Gooood food “!!””«”””

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