We Eat It So You Don't Have To: Little Caesar's Bacon-Crust Pizza
Photo by Ryan Cady
I'm gonna go out on a limb here and voice what is probably an unpopular opinion - I think Little Caesar's pizza is actually pretty great.
Now, before you all jump down my throat, and I have to hear "it's cardboard pizza!" for the forty billionth time in my life, just... just shut up and listen. That's hyperbole, and you know it.
It's hard to do bad pizza, and that's a fact. We've all heard the adage that pizza is like sex -- even bad pizza is still good, and it's true. Even if Little Caesar's is on the crap end of the quality spectrum (debatable), you totally get what you pay for. Five fucking dollars for a whole pizza, and it's ready when you walk in the door? Talk shit all you want, but that's a great business model.
But I actually enjoy the taste of Little Caesar's pizza. Is it my absolute favorite? No, of course not. (For the record, I like expensive ritzy pizza, and artisan Neapolitan pizza, and classic Costco pizza, too.) I worked in a pizza place for almost five years, and I cooked the stuff and ate the stuff and worked hard at perfecting it. I know what goes into a pie, and, to be honest, you can half-ass it and it'll still taste good. So, I'm not some schmuck who can't be trusted - I'm the guy who ate the Pizza Cake, for Chrissake. I'm saying you need to jump down off your high horse and admit that Little Caesar's ain't half bad.
Anyway, now that I've established my ethos, I can get to the point - the Nihilist monstrosity that is Little Caesar's Bacon-Wrapped Crust Deep Dish Pizza.
Photo by Ryan Cady
Before we even begin thinking about what ridiculous thought process comes into play before the design phase can begin on such a Frankensteinian abomination, I'd like to talk structure. I'll admit, I didn't have high hopes - I was baffled, frankly, as to how these people thought they would get bacon to just hangout on the edge of a constantly jostling, grease-dripping cheesy pizza crust.
But somehow, they did it. The bacon just chills there. I pictured it flopping around, getting my hands all gross when I picked it up, but no. Even when you take a bite out of the edge of the crust, the rest of the piece of bacon still clings to the pizza without sliding off into your mouth like meat spaghetti. I'm really not sure how they did it - somehow the upper layer of cheese fuses to the bacon while keeping it settled against the crust? I'm not sure. It's all alchemy to me.
Anyway, once you get past the absurd ingenuity of the bacon on the crust, it's really just a Little Caesar's Deep Dish Pizza (which is actually pretty tasty) with a lot of bacon bits on top. A LOT of bacon bits. Like, possibly even too bacony. I always try to eat my pizzas with Ranch Dressing - because Ranch is Sriracha for white people - and with this guy, it was almost necessary. The creamy flavor helped block some of the over-porkiness of the particularly affected areas of the pizza.
And, I know that I said I liked Little Caesar's (and I do), and I know that I started out trying to defend this crime against humanity (which I kind of am), but after six square pieces of yeasty-bacon-cheese-bites, I'm sort of left wondering exactly how necessary this thing was. I mean, it's not even particularly novel - bacon IS delicious, but as a nation we're sort of over the whole "Lololol, let's put bacon on everything." (Personally, I'm hoping we'll move towards a "Lololol, let's put PASTRAMI on everything," because, duh.) Plus, the pizza was $12. Again, that's pretty damn cheap for a big fat deep dish pizza, but that's not exactly Little Caesar's prices. They've got that Deep Dish Lunch Combo for $9. Just get that - it's better.
So what's the verdict? My stomach hurts, everything tastes like pork belly, and I'm still not exactly sure why. At this point, I'm sort of the food equivalent of the ghosts from Field of Dreams - if you bake it, I will come. And eat it. And make stupid jokes about it. And die young from heart disease.
Sigh. I do it for the people.
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