Pizza Express Lunch Menu
27 May 2014
So the other week when I wore this outfit I was wearing it to go check out Pizza Express's new lunch menu. My skeptical head was firmly on - Pizza Express just doesn't sound all that authentically Italian, am I right? Having never been to the chain before I didn't know what to expect but greasy, thick based pizzas where pretty much what was being conjured up.
What I didn't expect was a really warm greeting from the host and to be offered a choice of sundried tomatoes or olives whilst we perused the menu. Being an olive-phobic and a sundried tomato-aholic the choice was pretty clear. It's not often an option to have anything other than olives so already I was starting to perk up.
Whilst S and I perused the menu the manager came out to introduce himself and welcome us to the restaurant. Now, I realise that was probably only because I was there as a blogger but I really have to say how warmly we were treated by all the staff, even the waitress who clearly didn't know I was there to review the lunch menu - I didn't even get the weird looks that whipping out a DSLR in a restaurant usually brings.
For starters we had one winner and one wouldn't bother ordering it again-er.
The winner came in the form of the polenta chips. These babies were out of this world good. I honestly can't even explain how bloomin' good these things were. Showing my foodie ignorance here I hadn't even experienced anything like them and the description from the menu describes them as 'Italian polenta with rosemary, twice baked and finished with Gran Moravia cheese, served with honey & mustard dressing'. Now, I've had polenta before (I know I'd be a fan on the basis I love polenta anyway) but these were just totally different. In fact, I wish I had a transporter to take me to the restaurant right now and order them again. In fact, I'd order a number of portions and eat every last one.
The wouldn't bother ordering it again-er (it's totally a phrase, right?!) were the dough balls with garlic butter. Do't get me wrong, there was nothing bad about them - there was just nothing to make me order them again. We ate them but they were just a bit bland and boring, even dipped in garlic butter. Maybe I wouldn't have been so unimpressed if the polenta chips hadn't been so amazing, but they were. And they blew these dough balls out of the water, or maybe I should say out of the restaurant.
Anyway, onto the mains...
Remember what I said about greasy, thick pizzas? Yeah, well I decided the mark of a good Italian place is their pizza and whether it lives up to the pizzas I lived on during my gap year travelling around Italy. As something of an Italian food connoisseur I know a good pizza. And believe me, thick bases don't cut it. So I had to put it to the test and order the Pomodoro Pesto. Feast. Your. Eyes...
A thing of beauty. Thin base. Exact right ratio of base to toppings. Just a really perfect pizza. I really wasn't expecting it but this pizza blew me away. It seemed authentically Italian and - it was just fantastic. That's really all I can say here without verging into gushy territory. I like to pretend to keep some form of dignity.
S also went for pizza - opting for the American.
Despite being called the American it wasn't an American pizza - it was an Italian pizza with the addition of pepperoni. S, who doesn't really like pizza, finished it off before I could even nick a slice.
We were really quite stuffed so after nursing another diet coke for a while we decided we had to consider the dessert menu - I was there for review purposes after all and had to do a thorough job...
The plan was to order a dessert each and switch half way but when we realised Banoffee Pie was on the menu that went out the window. Two slices of that please!
Top be honest I think my love for banoffee pie means I can't be a reliable critic of it but this stuff was thick without being stodgy and had a good amount of toffee between the base and the main bit. Generally, thumbs up.
So - essentially I'd go back. I'd definitely go back. The only problem is I want another one of those pizzas but I also want to test if the Caprese Piadina and see how it measures up to my beloved Caprese from the Earl of Sandwich at Downtown Disney! Guess I'll just have to go back more than once...
I visited Pizza Express in Princes Square in Glasgow to try the menu for review purposes. Pizza Express website with menu details and store locator here.