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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Greetings from Jersey Guys Pizza.

I paid several visits to Jersey Guys Pizza in Beaverdale last month to see what these purveyors of South Jersey-style pizza and Philly cheesesteaks had to offer us Midwestern heathens, wallowing in our thin-crust pizzas and loose Italian sausage grinders.

On my first foray into their small strip-mall pizzeria I saddled up with a large meatball and mushroom pizza. Boasting a soft, foldable crust, the easy to chew rind exhibits a hint of crunch. First and foremost for toppings was the generous house blend of shredded cheeses. Über cheesy!

The house-made meatballs are tender and delicious, but being so finely chopped along with the competing taste of earthy mushrooms their flavor is subdued. My fault for such a pairing, and not the first time I've made such as mistake [see blog post]. The tomatoey pizza sauce is smooth and appealing. A simple cheese pizza would be exceptionally kid-friendly.

The Jersey Guys score bonus points for offering shakers of not just Parmesan and crushed red pepper, but also dried oregano and garlic powder. When I don't feel compelled to sample a pizza nude, that is without added seasoning, I can literally encrust a pizza.

Intrigued by their sandwich offerings I returned a few weeks later and ordered up a couple. Bedazzled by their size – each sandwich built on a foot-long hoagie roll – I first tucked into the Cheesesteak. Adorned with a schmear of processed cheese sauce, then chocked full of juicy, finely chopped beef and thin strands of fried onion. With all these familiar and comforting flavors, tucked into a soft, slightly chewy loaf: in the words of Jane Seymour, in some voice-over on an otherwise unremarkable furniture commercial of a few years back, "The seduction was complete."

My second sandwich, the Meatball Parm, was a revelation with firm, tender meatballs, and a bright, abundant marinara, both house-made. On this sandwich the hoagie sports an appealing toastiness, just perfect for this build.

I'm impressed with Jersey Guys' pizza and sandwiches, and with their reasonably affordable prices. A 14-inch pizza starts at $9.99 with the 16-inch only a couple bucks more, and huge 12-inch hoagie sandwiches hovering around seven bucks. Other items on the menu include cold hoagies, hot sandwiches with either chicken or sausage, chicken cheesesteaks, fries, rings, mozzarella sticks, chicken tenders and wings, and a selection of Coke products in cans and bottles.

Recently Jersey Guys Pizza married two of their great tastes with the new Cheesesteak Pizza, available as a 16-inch for $18.50.

I split one the other night with a New Yorker buddy of mine. The combination of finely-chopped beef steak and fried onions, along with a generous slathering of tangy 'wiz' on top of their cheese blend and house red sauce makes for one of the best pizzas in town. A must try for sure!

Jersey Guys Pizza on Urbanspoon

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