Archive | April, 2012

Picasso’s Pizzeria(Works of Art on a Doughy Canvas)

18 Apr

In the birthplace of Pizza Hut there are many places serving up pizza, but few of them sell New York Style by-the-slice(And no, Sbarro’s in the mall doesn’t count). The recently opened Picasso’s Pizzeria is changing that with their large selection of homemade by-the-slice-pizza. Located in the heart of Delano, ironically directly across Douglas from Pizza Hut, Picasso’s is doing their part to continue the oftentimes lost art of pizza making.

The Kansan: Ad Astra Per Pizza

The Great White: An Upgrade to the Cheese Pizza

The inside of the restaurant has a good pizza joint ambiance with its vintage brick walls, open floor plan, exposed ductwork, and obligatory TVs. Coupled with some solid rock’n’roll music being piped in it is a great environment to enjoy pizza. The menu at Picasso’s consists of by-the-slice and full size pizzas, calzones, sandwiches, and salads. There are several specialty pizzas(Listed as “Works of Art” on the menu) to choose from as well as an ample number of toppings for maximum pizza customization. If you are in the mood for pizza, which you should be if you are going here, ordering by-the-slice is the way to go unless you need to feed a sports team of some sort. Before you start ordering slices left and right be advised that they aren’t messing around with the size of the these slices. One or possibly two will be enough to satisfy most appetites. To further enhance your pizza experience Boulevard Wheat is offered on tap, in my opinion it is the perfect brew to go with pizza.

Steph and I were both hungry and decided to order 4 slices, much to the surprise of the cashier. We were aware of the ample size of our order, but welcomed the challenge. As for our slices we went with the Heart Attack,  Picasso,  Kansan, and Great White. Each order is made fresh, but since there were only a few other patrons on this particular day our food was out within minutes. The Heart Attack was your typical meat lovers pizza with Canadian Bacon, pepperoni, and sausage. The red sauce was very good and there was just the right amount of cheese on the slice. Next was the signature Picasso, a delicious treat that consisted of pesto, tomatoes, spinach, feta, and romano cheese. This unique flavor combination worked great on a slice of pizza. The Great White was a good twist on the boring old cheese pizza. This slice employed a garlic sauce with three different white cheeses: mozzarella, provolone, and ricotta.

The Heart Attack: Sign a DNR and Enjoy

Last but not least was the Kansan, another unique and excellent combination of red onions, sunflower seeds, blue cheese, and spinach. All four slices featured a thin crust that was crispy on the bottom yet remained chewy on top. Out of the four, the Kansan and the Picasso were our favorites. For those of you who don’t like to finish all the crust, take advantage of the honey packets on the counter because it goes great with any leftover crust pieces.

The Picasso: A Masterpiece

Unlike many other pizzas, Picasso’s maintains a good balance between crust, cheese, and toppings. You will not find pools of grease nor thick doughy crusts at this pizza parlor, just an abundance of great and unique pies. That is why I would move Picasso’s up to the top of the best pizza category into a three way tie with Il Vicino and Wichita Pizza Co.

Picasso's on Urbanspoon

Fusa/Red 8 Chinese/Chill Gelato(Sushi and Gelato Under One Roof)

9 Apr

Lured in by a coupon offering free gelato with the purchase of a meal we tried the 3 in 1 eatery Fusa/Red 8 Chinese/Chill Gelato the other day. Fusa is located in a strip mall just north of Kellogg and Greenwich. Apparently its original location was in the Towne East Mall, but since I try to avoid that place at all costs, it’s new to me. The owner of Fusa is the same person who opened the iconic Kwan Court and luckily he brought back an old favorite to serve at Fusa. I speak of the honey crispy walnut shrimp, one of my all time favorite dishes.

The Famous Crispy Walnut Shrimp

Fusa is set up much like a mall food court, with several counters offering different cuisines. There is Chinese, Japanese, Mexican, sushi, pasta, burgers, and last but not least, Gelato to top it all off. If you have picky eaters in your group there should be something at Fusa that will satisfy their needs. Ordering was a no brainer for Steph and I, we went with the honey crispy walnut shrimp and the honey crispy walnut chicken. Both dishes came served atop a bed of steamed rice(fried rice available upon request), with plenty of shrimp/chicken. The honey walnut sauce, while not quite on par with the Kwan Court version, was still very good. Coupled with some decent fried shrimp and chicken it was a satisfying meal.

After finishing our lunch we walked to the back of the restaurant where the coolers of gelato( Italian ice cream) are located. Unfortunately there were many delicious flavors, so making a decision was rather difficult. I finally settled on pistachio and Steph was won over by the salted caramel. Our single serving cups were piled high with the creamy frozen treats. We were both pleased with our respective gelato, although it was not as good as Caffe Moderne’s.

A Heaping Cup of Caramel Gelato

If you are looking for a place where you can get your teriyaki chicken and quesadilla fix at the same time Fusa is a good option. Even if you’re not interested in multi-ethnic dining, the large gelato selection is worth checking out.

Chill Gelato * Fusa * Red 8 Chinese on Urbanspoon

M&M Bierocks

1 Apr

If you drive past the 2000 block of east Central on a regular basis you have probably noticed the large black and white sign that proudly proclaims “Bierocks”. Located next to a somewhat questionable looking building, many people probably pass by just assuming it is the remnants of what was Wichita’s booming bierock craze. Yes, before Hot Pockets were widely available in supermarkets  the noble bierock restaurant is where people went to get their meat filled pastries. But upon closer inspection you will find that M&M Bierocks is actually open for all your bierock needs.

The Old Bierocks Sign On A Rainy Day

Once you pull into the parking lot at M&M remain in your car  and head for the back of the building because this place is drive thru only(Probably because they cannot allow anyone to observe their secret bierock making process). At the drive through window there is a small menu posted that consists of bierocks, pickles, chips, and a few sides including baked beans. The bierock options include meat and cheese, meat with no cheese, and ham and cheese. Steph and I both went with the meat with cheese option. We tried to order two ice waters as well, but were told the only water offered was in bottled form. It seems somewhat strange to me when restaurants won’t give you free ice water. If it’s about the cost of the cup then why not just charge people $0.10 to cover the cost? Anyway, we just decided to upgrade to the meal which included a drink, small pickle spear, and off-brand potato chips.

So Big You Need Both Hands to Safely Consume

Our bierocks  certainly hit the spot on a cool and rainy day. They were good sized and tasted fresh. The filling of ground beef, cabbage, spices and cheese had good flavor, although I would have liked a bit more cheese in mine. Both of us thought that the meal deal wasn’t really the best way to go and next time we would  just order two bierocks instead. At around $3.50 a pop you can’t beat the value of these blue-collar pastries.

If you are in the mood for a drive thru meal and don’t want to waste 3 hours sitting in line at Chick-fil-A then head over to M&M Bierocks. Their quick and tasty bierocks are sure to satisfy.

M&M Bierocks on Urbanspoon

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