May 9, 2013

Eat and Run: Pizza Joint, South Portland

If you like a good old-fashioned neighborhood pizzeria pizza, this Joint will take you to a happy place.

From staff reports

You can get bacon on or in anything these days, from pizza and burgers to salads and soups.

click image to enlarge

Joe Poliquin creates a pie at the Pizza Joint in South Portland.

Photos by Derek Davis/Staff Photographer

click image to enlarge

The finished product.

PIZZA JOINT

WHERE: 239 Ocean St., South Portland. 767-3220; portlandpizzajoint.com

HOURS: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily except Friday; 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday

CHEAPEST GRUB: Chicken nuggets, $2.55 for small

WAIT: 15 to 20 minutes for a pizza

PARKING: Yes

HANDICAPPED ACCESSIBLE: Yes

RATING: ***1/2

-- Based on a five-star scale

But half the time it's in bits, in teeny slivers or even in minced pieces. If I want bacon, I want BACON -- big, wide slices of bacon, the kind Oscar Mayer intended us to have.

So, boy, was I fired up when I ordered a pizza with bacon at Pizza Joint in South Portland and found that the 8-inch pie was covered with real bacon slices. Like the kind you get with bacon and eggs.

The slices were a tad thinner than some breakfast bacon, but were as long and as wide as any traditional bacon. The pie was virtually covered with the straight strips, like roads of deliciousness leading straight to flavor town (apologies to Guy Fieri, and to all of you as well).

I also had mushrooms and pineapple for toppings, which went surprisingly well with the bacon. The crust was outstanding -- just firm enough, just chewy enough, but in no way too crisp or too doughy. The sauce was perfect too, and did not overpower the main attraction, which for me was the bacon.

Did I mention that I like bacon?

Small pizzas at Pizza Joint start at $5.30 for a cheese. My three-topping pie was $9.65. I ate the whole thing, and was stuffed. Someone with more self-discipline might have gotten two lunches out of it.

Pizza Joint reminds me of the neighborhood pizza joints of my youth -- good reliable pizza made to order (it's not sitting under a heat lamp waiting for you), with lots of toppings from which to choose. Besides the bacon, some toppings I'd try on a return trip include prosciutto, barbecue chicken and capicola.

Pizza Joint also offers some 30 sandwich varieties, from salami and cheese ($5.85 for a large) to a roast beef Italian and chicken strip sandwich (each $8.15 for a large). Hot sandwiches include pepper steak, meatball, sausage and a steak bomb ranging from $7.60 to $8.40 for most large sizes and $11.25 for the steak bomb.

There are also chicken nuggets, chicken wings and other finger foods, plus pasta dishes such as lasagna, spaghetti and meatballs, and sausage.

Pizza Joint in South Portland (there's also one in Portland) is on the corner of Broadway and Ocean Street (Route 77). It's located near Mahoney Middle School, a large residential area, Mill Creek Park and the Mill Creek business district.

The location makes it perfect for getting take-out lunch and taking a moment to sit by the pond in Mill Creek Park and eat in peace.

It's also on the route from Portland to much of Cape Elizabeth, so it's a perfect place to grab a bite on the way home.

The staff of GO anonymously samples meals for about $10.

 

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