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Best Chain Pizza?

First of all, I'd throw out of consideration all the delivery houses: Papa John's, Domino's, Pizza Hut, and Little Caesar's.

My vote goes to Round Table. Good for regular crust, anyway. I'm a big fan of the Italian Garlic Supreme, which is great because they use NO TOMATO SAUCE!

Not a fan of California Pizza Kitchen, and BJ's has gone way down. Claim Jumper does make a pretty good pie.

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  1. I'm not a fan of CPK either and BJs is just okay.

    I love the thin crust pizzas @ Buca di Beppo, but the last time I went & ordered their marghareta, they used used tomato sauce instead of tomatoes, and it killed the pizza. When they make it correctly (w/tomatoes and not tomato sauce), I love it!

    1. My husband and I are fans of the Costco cafeteria pizza, particularly the Supreme pie or slice. It has a nice kick with a hint of spicyness along with the sweetness of the sausage, onions and peppers. The slice is pretty large as well and very satisfying as it is tasty.

      2 Replies
      1. re: sandrina

        not that pizza is a low-cal item, but i was staggered to discover that a slice of costco pizza has approximately 800 calories. not to rain on your parade . . . i was just shocked.


        1. re: mattesq

          I believe it. It doesn't help either that the slice is huge!

      2. New york pizza kitchen is our favorite. We just had one come to town not too long ago. Its really the only place we go to now.

        I will say this about Pizza hut- why can't they ever cook their pan pizza till done? It is alway raw!

        1 Reply
        1. re: Kari

          Pizza Hut is the only national chain pizza that I eat. But I only get personal pan pizzas, well done. If you get them well done they're super-tasty. Otherwise yeah, always doughy. Ew!

        2. Kind of a fan of the deep dish myself and I know what you mean Kari. My fave chain pizza is Numero Uno or Sbarro.

          1. I love New York Pizzeria. I have no idea whether their pizzas bear any resemblance to a real New York pizza, but they're delicious.

            1. Papa Gino's is actually better than most of the pizza in my area, which probably says more about the pizza in my area than it does about Papa Gino's... but it is a decvent NY style pizza.

              3 Replies
              1. re: Chris VR

                I too like Papa Gino's, but only fresh. It is horrible reheated.

                Like you it says what the pizza in my area is like.

                For the last few months we have had to be in NJ on and off, boy did we get spoiled! Just had our last great pizza Sunday.

                Hubby is from NJ so we know good thin crust.

                1. re: Chris VR

                  When I lived in New Hampshire, Papa's was like manna from heaven.

                  1. re: lvecch

                    Live in MA on the NH border, so you know what I mean. The 2 Papa Gino's I go to are in Nashua.

                2. in detroit we have a small chain called jet's - 117 stores + 6 in florida, 3 in ohio, and 1 in north carolina. when we don't go to our favorite joint (the alibi in troy) jet's is our fallback for quick carryout pizza vs. domino's, ceasar's, papa's, etc. consistant good quality, round or square, sauce with a hint of spice, nice cheese, and peppy pepperoni.

                  1. I had Jet's once in the store (meaning it wasn't made to order, just slices sitting out) and it was absolutely inedible. I ordered a whole pie for delivery and it was better, but it must be direct from the oven and fresh to eat.

                    Sbarro's satisfies when I want a lot of cheese.

                    We no longer go to Pizza Hut because we discovered an authentic NY pizza joint nearby (I'm in Florida), but we used to take my 3-year-old to Pizza Hut all the time. If you get their 4-For-all, it comes with a nice, thinner crust that's easier on the tummy than their crazy-greasy pan.

                    The only thing I like about Papa John's is the garlic dipping sauce.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Covert Ops

                      I like Pizza Hut's thin crust veggie lovers pizza. It's not New York style or the best pizza I've ever had, but it's good when you want pizza but not anything heavy or greasy.

                    2. I like Shakey's (plus the mojo potatoes are quite addictive ...)

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        What Pizza do you like from Shakeys? I'm thinking one of these days to do a to-go order just so SO can try some Mojos... ;)


                        1. re: Dommy

                          I usually get either the Hawai'ian or the Protein (with added chorizo).

                          If I'm selecting my own toppings, I go basic: thin crust, cheese, peperroni and bell peppers.

                          1. re: ipsedixit

                            Thanks! SO saw this post and was a little disapointed when I came home with dinner last night and it wasn't Shakeys... LOL! :)

                          2. re: Dommy

                            I don't know if you already went to Shakeys, but when you order the mojos make sure you tell them to make them fresh. The mojos at shakeys are legendary and I have fond memorys from my little league days, but when Shakeys introduced the "bunch o' lunch" lunch buffet they put mojos in chaffing dishes which was a disaster. The key to the mojo is that it must be fresh. If it sits around for any length of time it gets soggy.

                            I know I am rambling, but when you order mojos now, the staff invariably goes into the chaffing dish to fill the order. This as stated above is a disaster. So tell them fresh mojos only.

                        2. We have a local chain called Ameci which has pretty decent pizza, but if we're going for large nationals I think I'd have to go (God, I can't believe I'm saying this) with Dominos. I hate Pizza Hut, can't bear Papa John's and as for Little Caesar's and Shakeys... BLECH.

                          1. Favorite pizza? I have to vote Bertucci's myself.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Ladycale

                              Yeah, Bertucci's...thin crust, better quality toppings, wood-fired oven taste.

                            2. There is some amazing chain in Detroit that serves delicious, slightly expensive Chicago-style deep dish pizza. PizzaPapalis. Really good quality ingredients and good sauce.
                              I've never had better pizza at a chain.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: fara

                                Pizza Papalis is good for deep dish pizza. For normal chain pizza (in the Detroit area) I like Cottage Inn Pizza. Their BBQ chicken is a favorite selection.

                              2. BJ's used to be good for Chicago-style, but recently they have started putting feta in their pizza, so beware. That's just wrong!

                                1. Round table for sure. Their basic pepparoni is perfect.

                                  1. Maggiano's margherita is excellent. Add italian sausage. Listed as an app, but works as a meal w/ a salad.

                                    2 Replies
                                      1. re: calabasas_trafalgar

                                        The closest one to the Yuppie Forest is next to the Topanga Mall.

                                    1. There's a chain called Papa Keno's that has locations in Kansas and Colorado. They have an awesome deal where you can three footlong breadstick and a monster slice of pizza with 2 toppings for $6. Always great for beating the cravings.

                                      With national chains, I'd say Papa John's has the best among the cheap delivery places, and Pizzeria Uno is the best among the mid-sized, sit down places.

                                        1. Round Table has the best pizza, although I think compared to the others, they are over priced. I do like Domino's breadsticks with their garlic butter sauce.

                                          3 Replies
                                          1. re: mabziegurl

                                            Papa John's is the clear winner. A little garlic butter sauce and the world is suddenly a happier place.

                                            1. re: navygirl7

                                              I'll have to try that one. Every Papa Johns pie I've had tastes like american white cheese and catsup on a pita.

                                              1. re: monkeyrotica

                                                substitute cardboard for the pita and you have Little Ceasar's!

                                          2. California Pizza Kitchen, Round Table, and BJ's (if looking for really DEEP dish).


                                            1. If they qualify as being large enough chains, Amici's and Pizzaria Uno for me.

                                              I've heard of Shakey's but haven't come across one yet. Would love to try it someday.

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: J T

                                                Most of them are overseas now. Only a few left in the U.S.


                                                Every Unos pie I've had tasted like it was drowned in butter sauce. Made the mistake of ordering an artichoke pie, and the guy who made it basically emptied the vinegar juice into the pie. Tasted like pickeled butter.

                                                1. re: J T

                                                  There are still plenty of them in Southern california. Unfortunately, the quality varies enormously by location(the best one I knew of, in Covina, closed up a few months ago). There's only a few that I know of where the pizza is actually edible. On the other hand, their fried chicken seems to be great no matter where you go.

                                                  1. re: J T

                                                    Oh, man, I really dislike Uno. They have other items there besides pizza and I always walk out disappointed.

                                                  2. Sbarros....love their spinich and cheese stuffed pizza.....i did used to work there though in High School.......so good!

                                                    1. Dominoes THIN CRUST (all other dominoes are gross) pizza, with green peppers, bacon and pineapple is my favorite for when I need a junk food fix. Don't let the dominoes thing get in the way. The thin crust is good

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. I live in L.A. Love Round Table's Chicken Garlic Supreme with extra garlic. Yum! There seem to be more Round Table locations in No. Calif. than in So. Calif.

                                                        I like California Pizza Kitchen, regardless of what some other Hounds say.

                                                        I was recently helping a friend move and he picked up some Shakey's Pizza. I hadn't had Shakey's in years but as soon as I tasted it, childhood memories came flooding back. The pizza was pretty bland but the memories of the Shakey's Ye Olde Pizza Parlor and the player piano and the long wooden tables was just a warm fuzzy.
                                                        BTW, when I lived in Japan, there were Shakey's Pizza Parlors there. One of the combinations was: Shrimp, Anchovies and Cuttlefish . . .

                                                        1. Unos withoug a doubt.
                                                          gotta love the 2 for $20 takeout deal.... and the crust....

                                                          dominoes is just horrible, pizza hut is okay, but not as good as others for the price, papa johns is pretty good for what it is....

                                                            1. I think old chicago is great! not lacking in toppings like pizza hut, dominoes. They are more pricey but def better as far as pizza chains go. they also have great calzones! no delivery but they do have take out! While you wait for your order take a seat in the bar and have a beer, they have over 100 selections from all over the world!

                                                              1. Bertucci's, overall--but too bad it's East Coast only. On the West I guess Papa John's or CPK.