Drum roll please! The 18th post in the Atlanta Pizza Days is here, and it’s also the last post in the series. We’re finishing up with yet another pizza destination that is new to me – Maddio’s Pizza Joint (menu here).
It’s been a fun and calorie-filled ride, and I was excited to wrap this all up with a fun new spot that’s only been open for a few months. Created by one of the co-founders of Moe’s, Maddio’s is billed as a pizza “concept” restaurant, though I wasn’t really aware of this before my visit. Similar to Moe’s, Maddio’s is a made-to-order restaurant, where similar to the California burrito concept, you are in full control of your pizza from start to finish. You pick your crust, then your pizza moves on down the line where you select the sauce and toppings of your choosing.
This is definitely an interesting concept and I was eager to see the results. The made-to-order in front of your eyes concept has proven to be successful in other genres (salads, sandwiches, burritos), but how would the pie turn out?
We ordered one medium cheese, as well as a small pizza with tofu, blue cheese, and onions. We paid, then settled in on the spacious patio on this warm night. About 5 minutes later, the pizzas were delivered to our table. Scores below!
Dough (score – 2/5)
- “overcooked, thin, crispy, not much flavor, endcrust was weak, no structure”
- “it was ok. pretty standard. you could see all the dough out and already in little pans, waiting to be put in the conveyor cooker-which also didn’t allow for char or any of that fun stuff. But, it wasn’t too thick or gummy which was nice. Could have a little more flava.”
- Blind Taster’s comments - “had no flavor, no endcrust”
Sauce (score – 3/5)
- “liked the sauce, good amount, nice sharp flavor”
- “sauce was good. Nice amount.”
- Blind Taster’s Comments – “sauce was non-existent”
Cheese (score – 2.5/5)
- “better than average, a lot of cheese, nice color and flavorful”
- “Normal pizza cheese, nothing out of the ordinary, but good.”
- Blind Taster’s Comments – “cheese was good – liked the actual flavor”
Overall (score – 2.5/5)
- “Not bad, but very cookie-cutter on the whole. Tasted like a good thin boxed pizza. Crust was weak, everything else was decent enough”
- “The pizza was good overall, though everything was consistently standard. But, it’s nice to sometimes have a no surprises, typical, pizza. The pizza conveyor cooker didn’t get near hot enough to get the pizza nice and crispy though. ”
- Blind Taster’s Comments – “good flavor overall, tasted like a boxed pizza or lunchroom pizza“
Final Thoughts: As you may have surmised, this pizza was very generic on the whole; to me it’s more about the concept than it is about creating great pizza. The Moe’s concept is in full effect, and I can see why people like it. It’s kind of fun picking and choosing the ingredients, and the small pizzas start at a price ($6.49 with three toppings) such that each person in a family could order their own pie to their liking.
That being said, I just don’t think it’s possible to use pre-rolled dough that’s been sitting out, then throw it on a conveyer and expect fantastic pie. The dough was overcooked to my liking, and there is no way to check for doneness on a conveyer. The dough has little flavor and it didn’t rise much, the endcrust being particularly weak. The high point of the meal was the small pie we got – the blue cheese + tofu pizza was very tasty. I’m going to classify their pie as being topping driven, which fits into the concept. There were a handful of families there having a good time, and I can see kids loving this kind of spot as they get to create their own special pizza with exactly what they want. Me….I was sorry I didn’t head on over to Shorty’s across the street for some real dough.
Additional photos can be viewed in the gallery below