Thursday, November 24, 2016

Review: Mama Cozzi's Three Meat French Bread Pizza

As regular ALDI shoppers know, most of the house brands are good-to-great quality. Here at Pizza Quixote, we've sampled quite a few of the ALDI pizza options of the refrigerated and frozen varieties:

In general, we found the American-made stuff to be as good as the brand name fresh or frozen pizzas you can get in the typical supermarket. However, and this applies to anything you can get at ALDI, the stuff made in Germany is superior. The Caprese pizza note above stands with the Italian imported pies sold at Trader Joe's as the best frozen pizza you can get.

I'd be remiss, though, not to mention the Gino's East frozen deep-dish Chicago style pie frequently found at ALDI.  That calorie bomb is about as good as frozen pizza gets.

With all that as background, I was intrigued to see the new French Bread pizza under the Mama Cozzi label. The standard for this style was established decades ago by Stouffer's. Frozen French bread pizza - with its thicker but airy crust - often works better than your typical low-cost frozen pizza.

First, the price. For two generously-sized slices, the price is $1.99. Somehow I caught the 3-meat variety on clearance and paid just 99 cents for each box. These things aren't quite the calorie load of the Gino's East pizza mentioned above, but you're in for 450 calories in each slice.  Eat the entire box yourself, that's 900 calories.

These cook in the oven at 350 degrees for 23-25 minutes. You can do a microwave shortcut, but I cringe whenever the words "pizza" and "microwave" are used in the same sentence. If you think about microwaving your pizza because you are pressed for time, save even more time by throwing your pizza directly into the trash. You get the same result as microwaving it, only faster.

Out of the shrink wrap, I did notice that the bacon and sausage were properly distributed, but that the quartered slices of pepperoni had clustered together; it was easy to redistribute them over the pie.

The crust took on a nice golden brown, and it was indeed light in texture with a good al dente crunch. It did not seem to have much flavor of its own. The cheese was a very bland role player, while the sauce was the overly-sweet kind found in a typical frozen pie. The 3 meats were the star here.

Overall, this is a good bargain at $1.99 and a great one at $0.99. It's as good as Stouffer's or other French bread pizzas, but not as good as the Gino's East or German-sourced frozen ALDI pizzas. Like most frozen pizza, its sweet sauce and other tame flavors seem to be targeted at kids. 

Despite the bargain price, I'd only buy it again to have emergency pizza in the freezer. I enjoyed it, but there are certainly better frozen pizza options. Keep your eye out for any German imports.

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