Are the pizza puns getting old, yet? I certainly hope not because, as much as I love pizza, I'm sure there'll be more in the future!
About a week after our extensive Las Vegas pizza adventures, Matt and I were ready to test the waters again - this time at Pier 49 Pizza in St. George, Utah. A long day of driving and a lot of over-booked hotels meant that we were running late on our way to Southern Utah's Zion Canyon. We reached St. George a little past dinner time and swiftly headed to the first, non fast-food restaurant we could find. That this turned out to be yet another pizza place was coincidence; that it turned out to be Pier 49 was luck.
This chain specializes in gourmet, 'San Francisco Style Sourdough Pizza,' and though we were previously unaware that San Francisco even had a style of pizza, we were willing to give it a try. Their menu is extensive - in addition to a selection of 21 toppings, 5 cheeses and 6 sauces, their boards boast thirteen San Fransisco-themed specialty pizzas, ranging from the sea-food topped 'Fisherman's Wharf' to the heavily laden 'Alcatraz,' Pier 49's version of the 'supreme.' There is also a selection of salads, sandwiches and appetizers which, out of sheer hunger, we completely ignored. Matt opted for the 'Trolley' (pepperoni, ham and sausage) while I kept it simple with a 'Tourist' (a blend of 6 cheeses and Spinach Alfredo sauce).
The decor was cute, with cozy wooden booths and a cut-out of the San Francisco skyline on one wall, but to be honest, at this late in the day, it was all about the food. Thankfully, we didn't have to wait too long. I don't think I've ever come across sourdough pizza before, and after tasting it I have to wonder why. The crust was excellent in texture and taste - slightly chewy, not too thick and just a little sweet, with that essential dusting of cornmeal on the bottom. I was worried that my choice might be too cheesy, but the flavors were very balanced and the alfredo sauce was fresh and light. Matt's choice looked a little greasy to me (one of the reasons I don't like pepperonis) but he seemed more than satisfied.
I'm sure we would have polished our pizzas off entirely if we hadn't ordered the medium size. As it was, we each had a few pieces left over for lunch the next day. We carried them, in plastic baggies, to the top of Zion Canyon and enjoyed them at the end of our long hike, overlooking the majestic expanse of the canyon below. Maybe it was the view, or maybe the hours of hiking that led up to it, but somehow the pizza tasted even better from our perch on the rocks. Sadly, the Pier 49 chain hasn't yet branched out beyond Utah and Idaho, but if you find yourself near Zion, be sure to pick up a pizza and save a few slices for a great packed lunch!