Tommy’s Pizza

18 Jan 2012
Average Cost ($8-$14)
Southeast Huntsville
3 out of 5

Melanie’s Take

I’ve never had pizza in New York. As a matter of fact, except for a flight connection at JFK, I’ve never even been to NYC. So, I feel ill-prepared to critique Tommy’s, but I figure good food is good food wherever you may eat it. When you walk into Tommy’s (Whitesburg Drive location), it feels like a modern and clean space. The large and open dining area is full of chrome, black, and red and neat black and white photography of NYC landmarks. You place your order at the walk-up counter then find a seat until your pizza is brought to you.

We ordered the 21″ Meat-eor Pizza ($22.60), which, as the name implies, is topped with different kinds of meats, including pepperoni, italian sausage, ham, and ground beef. Although the toppings were good, none of them was excellent. My favorite part of the pizza was probably the housemade crust. It was neither too thick or thin and had a nice flavor that rose above others I’ve tried. Perhaps the most NY-ish element about this pizza was its size. To eat it with any kind of grace requires a fork or folding your slice in half. Otherwise, it will flop around and half of your toppings will fall off. Along with the pizza, we also tried the cheesy garlic bread. Although tasty, I wished the garlic flavor were more robust and the cheese more cheesy.

Tommy’s is definitely more expensive that chain pizza joints, but it also offers the kind of pizza that you can’t get at those places either. Although I wasn’t blown away, I appreciated the change of pace and look forward to going back to try some of the more adventurous pies like the White Pizza (Ricotta, Mozzarella, Sauteed Spinach & Garlic) or the Lasagna Pizza. If you’re not in the mood to dine out, both the Bridge Street and Whitesburg locations offer delivery.

Shane’s Take

A few months ago, Tommy’s Pizza opened its second location in the old Bellacino’s spot next to Publix on Whitesburg Drive. The first location in Bridge Street has been around a few years, but we aren’t into the Bridge Street scene, and except for Connor’s (a great chain) and the new Watercress (I assume it’s as good as the one downtown), the food at Bridge Street leaves a lot to be desired. But, with Tommy opening a new location in South Huntsville, that indicated something’s going right, so we decided to give it a try.

Having worked up a large appetite while waiting for the fourth Twilight movie to for-Pete’s-sake end already, we ordered some cheesy garlic bread and a 21″ Meat-eor, which is topped with ham, pepperoni, ground beef, and Italian sausage. Being New York style pizza, the crust was a little thinner than your average Pizza Hut pie, requiring two hands be used on each piece. It was baked evenly and had a great flavor and texture, although I prefer Tortora’s. I also enjoyed the toppings, particularly the sausage, which had a nice peppery punch to it. I didn’t care for the almost-lunch-meat ham, but it didn’t distract too much from the other toppings. Unfortunately, the garlic bread—a sub sandwich bun topped with cheese and garlic powder—was forgettable. It really could use some inspiration.

The atmosphere of the store is open, casual, and simple. There are many more tables than booths, lots of floor space, and a TV or two, making it a convenient place to take your kids or a big group from church. Plus, ordering by the slice makes it easier for everyone to get the toppings they want. The kids and foodies in your group will also appreciate the large viewing window through which they can watch an employee knead and sling pizza crust. Of course, there’s a tradeoff for offering the group-friendly atmosphere, that being that the store has little character. The mural on the wall, the ordering counter, the open floor space—none of it is amusing or different from any of a thousand other places. Is it a nice atmosphere? Yes. Can you have a good time eating there? Yes. Is it amusing or mysterious or so full of character that you’ll feel you must return? Probably not.

I feel much the same way about our Tommy’s eating experience: fine but not memorable. The food was good, and the atmosphere was fine, but neither was spectacular. I can hardly complain about the store, but I doubt I’ll return. I should be ashamed, but most of the time I’d be just as satisfied eating chain pizza.

A couple notes:

  • Tommy himself brought out our pizza, introduced himself, and shook my hand. You may get stuffed crust at Pizza Hut, but you won’t get a handshake.
  • I dig the classic red disposable Coca-cola cups at Tommy’s. As a kid, I remember seeing those cups on TV ads and wanting to but never getting to see them in person. It’s still rare to see them, so I got a little wound up drinking from one at Tommy’s.
  • A 21″ pizza is giant, by the way. The four of us were starving, and it still was a challenge to finish it.
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3 Responses

  1. Chelsea Green

    I LOVE Tommy’s! It’s definitely not for everyone. My fiance hates the thin pizza, haha. If you ever go back, try a buffalo chicken slice. Delicious!

  2. Alisha

    Tommy is a really nice guy. I don’t go there often now that Bridge Street is packed all the time, but used to go like crazy because I work there. The white pizza is good & the BBQ chicken is my favorite. The Bridge Street location is awesome but is almost too small now for the crowds that come out there.

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