Tomaso’s Pizza

I had to take my wife’s Subaru in for service. We’ve never lived near a dealership so this was an advantage to be taken since moving to Cedar Rapids. Since the dealership is in Hiawatha I figured we’d eat in Hiawatha. The Child wanted pizza and I saw the sign for Tomaso’s. We’ve gotten coupons in the mail from them but of course those coupons were at home.

There must be some county ordinance that says any eating establishment must look closed from the outside. Tomaso’s was just like all the others when viewed from the parking lot. Nondescript, dark almost mirrored windows. But they were indeed open and not closing any time soon. Only a few people were inside. We were warmly greeted by the staff in the kitchen. The restaurant is not big and they did not invest a lot of money in decor or furniture.

You order at the register. There was a place in Canton GA called Uncle Maddio’s that was similar in concept, albeit with more franchise polish. We had never heard of Detroit style pizza but as ex-Michiganders we were eager to try it. There did not appear to be any kid’s menu so we ordered a small cheese pizza for The Child and a medium Detroit Deep Dish Meat Lover’s plus Mushrooms for the adults.

The pizzas are delivered on a metal grate for some reason. The cheese pizza looked amazing. Lots of cheese! The Child only had one piece though. Not sure of the why. She claimed to not feel good but I ate it and it was delish.

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The Detroit pizza is described as “Thick and bready, NO LIP. Cheese all the way to the edge of the pan so the crust caramelizes.” It looked good. The Wife really liked the sauce on top of the toppings. Meh. I don’t love pizza sauce like she does. Matter of fact the less sauce the better for me. The pizza was good. But the crust edge was AMAZING! I’d order this again just for the crust. It was the best cheesy bread stick I’ve ever had.

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We will definitely be trying Tomaso’s again, hopefully with coupons next time! My favorite Chicago pizza is Giordano’s and I want to see how Tomaso’s compares. If you have any vegetarians in you life, this looks to be a great place to bring them. Tomaso’s has two vegetarian combos plus a chicken option. I know where to take The Child’s BFF when she visits.

 

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Granite City Food & Brewery

The kiddo and I had time to kill while the wife had business to attend to. We explored in the car and when the decision came to eat we pulled into the parking lot of Granite City Food & Brewery. If I didn’t know any better I would have thought I was in BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse in Ohio. The interiors looked identical. The menus did not though.

The hostess who sat us was very friendly. She brought out a bowl of fruit for the kiddo right away which was a very nice touch.

I’m a sucker for fresh baked pretzels, even if they are just a frozen food service item. So I couldn’t help myself ordering the pretzel sticks as an appetizer. Even the kiddo had one. I seem to remember not being too impressed with the Northern Cheese Sauce. Give me a spicy brown mustard or bold nacho cheese with my pretzels. They would have been even better with a beer but I’m very strict about not drinking and driving so I settled for a Diet Pepsi.

The daughter ordered Kraft Mac n’ Cheese. I tried to talk her out of it because the last 10+ times she’s ordered it anywhere she takes two bites and pushes it away saying it isn’t cheesy enough. And she’s right. And I’m tired of wasting food. But she decreed this batch to be good and ate almost the whole thing. She said the difference was the word “creamy” in the menu description. Right.

I ordered the lunch combo of Pepperoni Flatbread and Caesar Salad. I love love anchovies on my Caesar salad, unfortunately they did not have any. The salad was pretty mediocre I think because of poor use of cheese, barely any. The flatbread pizza was good. Cut into four small squares, maybe 3″ by 3″ which made for a lunch on the lighter side. The pepperoni was good as was the cheese. That might be the first flat bread pizza I’ve had

My daughter is a dessert fanatic. She burns thousands of calories per day thanks to gymnastics and soccer so it’s not too bad of a bad habit. Yet. If a restaurant has a brownie sundae, she’s ordering it. And so she did here. I don’t have the sweet tooth and rarely order dessert. She let me have a bite and I found the brownie to be dry and on the cake side. I prefer a moister, fudgier brownie. She finished the whole thing though so it must have been good.

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Brownie Sundae sans whipped cream per request