Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Pizza Hut P'Zolos

I abandoned Pizza Hut long ago. High school was full of nothing but love for The Hut based on one of the greatest inventions of the last million years, stuffed crust pizza. But over time, the sauce changed (not sure if this is true, but I swear it's different), they skimped on toppings, and I grew up and realized how much better local pizza places were over chains. But I'm always up for a new fatvention, and Pizza Hut's P'zolos sucked me right in. So, after a failed attempt at ordering them one night (I ordered online only to be called 5 minutes later and told they were out of P'zolos), I ordered all 3 a few nights later. 

Based on the commercials and the fact that they "ran out" of something I was expecting to be cooked fresh, I kind of assumed these would just be crappy hot pockets minus the convenience of hot pockets. The picture made them look much nicer though...

and the price was nice (3 bucks each or 2 for $5), so I still went in with an open mind. 

Here's what they actually looked like, with my hand for reference (note- my sausage fingers and meat hands may be bigger than those of a lot of readers):

These weren't anything amazing, but they were better than I expected, and very far from hot pockets- mostly because of the crust, which was soft and flavorful, while being grease-glazed and a little crunchy on the outside. They were basically really good pizza dough rolled around cheese and meat. They were also pretty much the perfect size- perfect for dipping, as they easily fit in the dip cups, and perfect for a side order or lunch. Or, if you order all 3, a dinner. 

The Meat Trio tasted exactly the same as their 3 meat p'zone, but at least in my case, with less cheese. I'm pretty underwhelmed with both, as the sausage has a very cheap taste and texture and overpowers any other flavors, but I preferred this to the P'zone for softness of dough and ease in dipping. Covered in marinara, this was decent.

The Italian Steak was the worst of the three. Taking a lot at it, the steak looks marinated, but you can see how much else was in it- the standard peppers, onions, and mushrooms. This one had the most cheese which saved it a bit, but I barely tasted steak. Everything just tasted like green peppers and mushrooms which made this, tried both with marinara and ranch, pretty unappealing. If you love green peppers and mushrooms, then maybe you'd be into this, but I want to actually taste steak- and there's barely any flavor there. It's almost like the steak was marinated in mushroom and green pepper juice. 

The winner was, as I expected, the Buffalo Chicken. The chicken was plentiful and of surprising quality, there was a good amount of cheese, and it wasn't too hot but still had just enough of a kick to it. It tasted great with ranch or the buffalo I ordered on the side (it comes with ranch). The only problem with this is that it didn't have a lot of the buffalo flavor we've come to love- it was more of a toned down buffalo attempt- kind of hot with some familiar flavor, but just kind of missing something. 

But it was my favorite, and I can see myself ordering one or three of these again in the future- I ate mine VERY fast. 

The bottom line on these bad boys is that they're ok. They're nothing entirely new, but they do actually land somewhere between pizza, subs and hot pockets (as they're marketed) so they are just different enough to warrant a try if you're near a pizza hut. Don't drive too far for these, but the buffalo and meat trio would make a great side to a meal or a small meal on the road. 

Meat Trio: C
Italian Steak: D
Buffalo Chicken: B-

Better than I thought they'd be and a fairly unique addition to the Pizza Hut menu, but other than the buffalo chicken, nothing worth freaking out about. Stick to your favorite pizza place.

-Review by Mike