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Friday, November 9, 2012

Recent eats: NYC Pizza Cafe, Angelo's, Famous Dave's

UPDATE: Angelo's has since closed this location. In November 2013, Angelo's moved from 13th & Grand in West Des Moines to nearby 1238 8th St. and rebranded itself as Angelo's on 8th.

Tradition dictates that taco pizzas be covered in a salty heap of crushed nacho cheese-flavored tortilla chips. I for one, prefer crisp lettuce and juicy tomato as the only additions.

I had a delightfully unique Taco Pizza from NYC Pizza Cafe recently, once I scratched underneath the surface. NYC's pizza starts off with their tender crust, then slathers the surface with a savory refried bean sauce. Topped with ground beef, diced jalapeno and cheese, then baked, and finished with chopped lettuce, tomato and the omnipresent crushed tortilla chips.

After I polished off a slice to sample the full treatment, I scraped off the chips, lettuce, and tomato and ate them separately as a salad, with copious amounts of packet taco sauce as an ersatz dressing.

Then I was able to enjoy the pizza as it had come from the oven. The seasoned bean sauce is quite delicious. Without the lettuce, tomato and chips, more jalapeño and a smidgen more beef would be welcome, but otherwise a fine pizza worthy to revisit. In fact I almost did recently until social dinner plans forced me to settle for a plate of Italian Nachos at Old Chicago.

I've heaped enough praise upon personal favorites Mr. Filet and Angelo's Pizza, to the point where some of you are probably lamenting, "Enough already!"

I agree, but first I have to mention the B.L.T. pizza I enjoyed a while back. It's a simple bacon pizza, built on Angelo's thin, crispy, charred crust; topped with lettuce and tomato. Sound good enough? But wait… "Where's the mayo?", you say. Ah, I will tell you.

Angelo's paints a veneer of mayonnaise on top of the cheese before loading on the L. and T. The mayo helps to glue down the lettuce; You can taste the flavor, but its not overbearing.

I have a fondness for Famous Dave's Legendary Pit Bar-B-Que's sauces, link sausage, Wilbur Beans, and their sweet cornbread muffins. On my last visit to load up on a double portion of sausage, I also shared a plate of Not’cho Ordinary Nachos with my table mate.

Dave’s version piles on Wilbur Beans, chili, sliced jalapeños, shredded lettuce and cheddar cheese, chopped tomato, drizzles of sour cream and Rich & Sassy sauce, and your choice of beef brisket, chopped pork or pulled chicken. We sampled the tender brisket.

A fun, imaginative build! I could have eaten the whole plate alone as a meal, but then I wouldn't have had room for my sausage, and healthy doses of Dave's Wilbur's Revenge hot BBQ sauce.

NYC Pizza Cafe on UrbanspoonFamous Daves Bar-B-Que on Urbanspoon

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