Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Quickie Review: Spicy Pulled Pork Pizza - Papa John's: NJ

Spicy Pulled Pork Pizza - Papa John's: NJ
I'm back from Baltimore! I was hoping to update each night from my hotel room, but the wifi was an absolute mess. (I should have known better. 30,000+ people and free wifi? It never had a chance.)  I'll be posting more about that on my art blog, but right now I need to get back into the swing of things, so to kick things off I have this quickie pizza review.

So the last few pizzas I've had from Papa Johns have been very disappointing. The Greek was just a veggie pizza with a hint of feta, which was yummy, but boring, and the Sweet Chili Chicken was easily re-creatable at home. It seems like I was one of the very few people who enjoyed Papa John's Double Cheeseburger Pizza, since a lot of other food blogs thought it was awful, but I am starting to worry that it spoiled me. I haven't enjoyed any of the limited edition pizzas since.

With that being said, I love spicy foods, and pulled pork sandwiches, so I'm hoping this pizza would finally break my "meh" streak.  
  • Pulled Pork
  • Pepperjack & Mozzarella Cheese
  • Sweet BBQ Sauce
  • Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
The list of toppings is rather short, and it looks a bit plain when compared to the heavily topped Greek or Double Cheeseburger, but maybe it'll be better than the others.

I took a bite, and I was sadly underwhelmed. (Again? Are these pizzas really lack luster or am I becoming a snob?) It isn't that the pizza tastes bad by any means, but the flavor profile is no where near as interesting as I had hoped. This pizza uses the same sweet BBQ sauce as other BBQ themed pizzas from Papa John's, which I enjoy, but the only contrast to the sweetness is the spiciness from the copious amounts of red pepper flake and bits of salty "pulled pork." I love spicy foods, but I want them to taste good too. Red pepper flakes add heat, but they don't contribute anything to the overall flavor of the pizza. (Although they did add a bit of a crunchy texture.)

Also, considering that "pulled pork" is the overall theme, it doesn't feature real pulled pork at all. Instead there are these dry little bits of pork jerky shrapnel that are scattered across the surface. The pork bits are very stringy and I felt like they got caught in my teeth quite a bit when I ate this pizza, and the cheese didn't seem all that different than a normal pizza from Papa Johns.

Although I still happily ate my two slices of pizza, I won't be mourning the loss of this limited edition item. The pepper flakes certainly make this spicy, so you won't be disappointed in the spice-department, but this "pulled pork pizza" is more like you added the last little bits of jerky from the bottom of the bag to a spicy BBQ pizza.

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