Not the best. Not the worst..
So, I just kicked off my unofficial search for "The Best Pizza in Noblesville" the other day. I had intended to start out with The Firehouse but was surprised to see that they didn't open for business that day (it was Wednesday early afternoon) until 4pm. Slightly crestfallen, I drove west along 32 looking for the first non-chain pizzeria that I could find. I saw Michaelangelo's and pulled into the parking lot. However, when I got out of the car, I saw Mancino's. Briefly weighing my options, I decided on Mancino's for its simplicity.
The store is on the end of a shopping plaza. The inside has ample room for eating, a large flat-screen TV (which was showing the U.S. Open that day), a kid's playroom in the back, and lots and lots of Beatles memorabilia. The counter and the kitchen are open and quite plain looking. I give the interior a 5/10 overall. I wouldn't mind staying there to eat, but it seemed more like a hodge-podge of stuff and seemed to lack cohesion.
Anyway, something about the menu on the wall behind the counter bugged me. I think it's that it wasn't easily navigable. It took a few moments to 'figure out'. And the lettering on the sign was pretty blah. It almost had the appearance of a big, blown-up sheet of white paper with printed lettering on it. They really need to fix that.
Let's talk about the service and the food now.
I was promptly greeted by a friendly looking younger man and noticed two younger females in the kitchen. I'm a black olive and pepperoni man myself, so I ordered a 16" pie 1/2 and 1/2. It set me back just under $18.00. While waiting for the pie, I sat down to watch tennis on the big screen. Shortly after, one of the girls from the kitchen came out and turned up the sound for me, which I thought was a nice touch.
It probably took just under 20 minutes to get the pizza, which seemed reasonable I suppose.
Now, on to the pizza itself. The first thing I noticed was that carrying the box out to my car, it seemed a little light for a 16" 1-topping. I've been working out lately, but still - it didn't seem quite heavy enough. Opening the box I noticed that the smell didn't make me go crazy to begin eating, even though I was really hungry. Also, the appearance of the pizza itself was unattractive. This was probably due to the flatness of the pizza itself. The edges of the crust aren't like the traditional, raised, hand-tossed look. It's literally flat. There wasn't an abundance of topping on the pizza either and the pepperoni was under the cheese.
Having said that, the consistency of the pizza was nice. The cheese had good texture but lacked flavor and creaminess. It comes through here and there, but not on every bite. The dough is unimpressive. While it has decent chewiness, it lacks any real distinctiveness. There was no real crust on the bottom and there were no seeds or other textural items. And it lacked flavor. The sauce is O.K. Every now and then I'd get a nice flavor of oregano, but tasting the sauce alone, it lacks any real punch. It tastes under seasoned, as if plain, unsalted tomato sauce was poured out of a can and sprinkled with oregano. In the end, the only thing I could really taste was the toppings. But I didn't like the quality of the pepperoni. The black olives weren't bad however.
This pizza was at best a 5 out of 10, and that may be too high. 4.5 may be more realistic. The only real good thing I can say about it is that it wasn't that greasy overall. And the lightness of it actually was all that bad of a thing as it didn't leave me feeling like I had a rock in my stomach after eating.
If you're hungry give it a shot. But I wouldn't create a special event around this pizza.
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