Last week, the Friends in Pie Places descended on Mama’s Pizza in Omaha with the aplomb and flair for the dramatic that we hope to bring to every pizza joint we hit from now till we run out of pizza places to descend on. Throughout the week, we’ll bring you our reviews on Mama’s pizza, personnel, and a few tricks we learned about the ins and outs of Two Truths and a Lie. Read on. 

Evan’s Review: 
Mama’s pizza. It was pretty good. Though not great. Part of the problem was that I ate too much. But it was better than most pizza chains, like Papa John’s or Pizza Hutt. Yeah, like we discussed, the crust wasn’t great, which is really important. You had to tear at it with your teeth and your fork. The other stuff was good. A unique sausage pizza, with the slices of sausage rather than ground sausage.
Rachel E’s Review:
The pizza at Mama’s Pizza was absolutely delicious. It even tastes delicious when you save some for later! The Friends in Pie Places company was just as good as the pizza.

Last week, the Friends in Pie Places descended on Mama’s Pizza in Omaha with the aplomb and flair for the dramatic that we hope to bring to every pizza joint we hit from now till we run out of pizza places to descend on. Throughout the week, we’ll bring you our reviews on Mama’s pizza, personnel, and a few tricks we learned about the ins and outs of Two Truths and a Lie. Read on. 

Evan’s Review:
 

Mama’s pizza. It was pretty good. Though not great. Part of the problem was that I ate too much. But it was better than most pizza chains, like Papa John’s or Pizza Hutt. Yeah, like we discussed, the crust wasn’t great, which is really important. You had to tear at it with your teeth and your fork. The other stuff was good. A unique sausage pizza, with the slices of sausage rather than ground sausage.


Rachel E’s Review:

The pizza at Mama’s Pizza was absolutely delicious. It even tastes delicious when you save some for later! The Friends in Pie Places company was just as good as the pizza.



The Official* Shoe of the Friends in Pie Places

*Not Official

The Official* Shoe of the Friends in Pie Places

*Not Official


The Isles: A Review

Pizza pie, the last enduring American family-style staple. When, other than Thanksgiving dinner, can friends sit around a table and—not pardoning their reaches—dive in for such a communal meal? Each flavor is shared corporately, like no other plated fare.

As a crust snob, I can say the Isles has done it right. Soft, yet solid and none too chewy. The best part of their signature “Leaning Tower of Pizza” would have to be the onions however. Hidden under a drapery of melted cheese, it was a surprise to taste sweet, carmeled onions. Not too raw to be pungent and not too smoked to be spoiled, I would have made peanut brittle with them were they not so well suited on the pie.


Madam President here, (mostly) eager and willing to write the very first review. There has been, I must confess, some hesitation and (ugh) anxiety in approaching this. What if no one laughs? Perhaps I am in fact not cut out to be a food critic. How can I express just how enjoyable the experience was so that you, dear reader, feel as if you were right there with us? I’m so almost over it. I can obsess on using witty repartee, or, I can just tell about our wonderful evening. If someone chuckles occasionally while reading, that’s frosting. 
After weeks of researching, planning, dreaming, and drooling, Friends in Pie Places, affectionately referred to as FIPP, officially launched Labor Day evening. We began our noble (and somewhat selfish) quest at Isles Pub and Pizza. The Isles boasts “WE ARE GREAT PIZZA!!” and indeed, THEY ARE!! Nestled in historic Havelock in Lincoln, the Isles immediately won us over with the ample parking. Perhaps this is unique with the holiday, but nonetheless, accessibility matters. 
Upon entering, there was a surprising sense of unity and camaraderie with our fellow patrons. We all love pizza and get to love it together! There was much laughter and great cheer throughout. Every seat was taken, but we were immediately served drinks at the bar, and every effort was made by servers and fellow patrons to get us seated quickly. One Friend issued the following statement regarding her experience:"If it’s any indication, on a weekend where most people grill in their backyards even in a zombiepocolypse, Isles was deafeningly packed full of people eager to ingest every last carb on their plate. Inventive recipes, wallet friendly prices, and expedient service even during an understaffed stampede ensures that Isles will delight even the most cantankerous customer."Once seated, we could hardly contain our excitement and enthusiasm for that moment. New friendships to be forged, old friendships to cultivate, and great pizza to be devoured! The Isles is best known for their Leaning Tower of Pizza featuring “deluxe hamburger, pepperoni, pepperoncini (Italian salad pepper) and a light sprinkling of onion.” The fried vegetables also came highly recommended, we went with the Beer Battered Zucchini Slices and Jalapeno Poppers. The appetizers were inhaled, yet immediately forgotten about when the pizza arrived shortly after. Pizza is always such a scene stealer.

 
An ever so friendly Friend had this to say about the pizza:"I thought the pizza was quite good. The crust was close to perfect. I was honestly disappointed that the Leaning Tower of Pizza looked no different than the average pizza, but am incredibly thankful that it tasted ten times better. That Isles has a legion of followers makes complete sense now. I’m on board!"Another friend agreed:"I didn’t have the leaning tower, I had a personal pan veggie pizza, which had a good amount of cheese and veggies (which seemed fresh-ish). Also, it was easy to eat. It wasn’t overly thin so that when you pick it up it sags under the weight of the toppings. No fork and knife necessary! Probably my favorite pizza I’ve had in town, now that I think about it."Not one complaint was voiced about the pizza, only the lack there of. Being the holiday for grilling, some of the FIPP had been backyard barbecue hopping throughout the day, and pizza, regardless of its heavenly palatableness, could not be consumed in the desired portion, leaving other FIPP, possibly, feeling somewhat unfulfilled when more pizza was not ordered. Conversation flowed, and I found myself several times leaning back in my chair grinning like a silly school girl. There is nothing quite like great pizza and beer with great people. Something should be said about these great people. Our Horizontal Driller has amazing recall and drives a jeep. The last book he read was in fact, The History of Jeeps. Our lovely Mechanic, because every group needs an assassin, will also change your tires while in heels with total grace. We have been blessed with a Creative Director, who is far more clever and witty than myself, and who enjoys camping in Colorado, and rubbing it in the faces of those who are stuck at work. Perhaps our Singer/Songwriter is composing a Friends in Pie Places ditty, perhaps not.  Every group needs a Stylist, and ours cannot be matched.  He owns a fabulous salon and told me that I have incredible hair.  
This might be it.  Wow.  Writing a review wasn’t so bad.  I feel pretty good about it.  Who knows, I may or may not volunteer to write the next one.  The next one! It is happening.Stay classy.  

Madam President here, (mostly) eager and willing to write the very first review. There has been, I must confess, some hesitation and (ugh) anxiety in approaching this. What if no one laughs? Perhaps I am in fact not cut out to be a food critic. How can I express just how enjoyable the experience was so that you, dear reader, feel as if you were right there with us? I’m so almost over it. I can obsess on using witty repartee, or, I can just tell about our wonderful evening. If someone chuckles occasionally while reading, that’s frosting. 

After weeks of researching, planning, dreaming, and drooling, Friends in Pie Places, affectionately referred to as FIPP, officially launched Labor Day evening. We began our noble (and somewhat selfish) quest at Isles Pub and Pizza. The Isles boasts “WE ARE GREAT PIZZA!!” and indeed, THEY ARE!! Nestled in historic Havelock in Lincoln, the Isles immediately won us over with the ample parking. Perhaps this is unique with the holiday, but nonetheless, accessibility matters. 

Upon entering, there was a surprising sense of unity and camaraderie with our fellow patrons. We all love pizza and get to love it together! There was much laughter and great cheer throughout. Every seat was taken, but we were immediately served drinks at the bar, and every effort was made by servers and fellow patrons to get us seated quickly. 

One Friend issued the following statement regarding her experience:
"If it’s any indication, on a weekend where most people grill in their backyards even in a zombiepocolypse, Isles was deafeningly packed full of people eager to ingest every last carb on their plate. Inventive recipes, wallet friendly prices, and expedient service even during an understaffed stampede ensures that Isles will delight even the most cantankerous customer."

Once seated, we could hardly contain our excitement and enthusiasm for that moment. New friendships to be forged, old friendships to cultivate, and great pizza to be devoured! The Isles is best known for their Leaning Tower of Pizza featuring “deluxe hamburger, pepperoni, pepperoncini (Italian salad pepper) and a light sprinkling of onion.” The fried vegetables also came highly recommended, we went with the Beer Battered Zucchini Slices and Jalapeno Poppers. The appetizers were inhaled, yet immediately forgotten about when the pizza arrived shortly after. Pizza is always such a scene stealer.

An ever so friendly Friend had this to say about the pizza:
"I thought the pizza was quite good. The crust was close to perfect. I was honestly disappointed that the Leaning Tower of Pizza looked no different than the average pizza, but am incredibly thankful that it tasted ten times better. That Isles has a legion of followers makes complete sense now. I’m on board!"

Another friend agreed:
"I didn’t have the leaning tower, I had a personal pan veggie pizza, which had a good amount of cheese and veggies (which seemed fresh-ish). Also, it was easy to eat. It wasn’t overly thin so that when you pick it up it sags under the weight of the toppings. No fork and knife necessary! Probably my favorite pizza I’ve had in town, now that I think about it."

Not one complaint was voiced about the pizza, only the lack there of. Being the holiday for grilling, some of the FIPP had been backyard barbecue hopping throughout the day, and pizza, regardless of its heavenly palatableness, could not be consumed in the desired portion, leaving other FIPP, possibly, feeling somewhat unfulfilled when more pizza was not ordered. 

Conversation flowed, and I found myself several times leaning back in my chair grinning like a silly school girl. There is nothing quite like great pizza and beer with great people. Something should be said about these great people. Our Horizontal Driller has amazing recall and drives a jeep. The last book he read was in fact, The History of Jeeps. Our lovely Mechanic, because every group needs an assassin, will also change your tires while in heels with total grace. We have been blessed with a Creative Director, who is far more clever and witty than myself, and who enjoys camping in Colorado, and rubbing it in the faces of those who are stuck at work. Perhaps our Singer/Songwriter is composing a Friends in Pie Places ditty, perhaps not.  Every group needs a Stylist, and ours cannot be matched.  He owns a fabulous salon and told me that I have incredible hair.  


This might be it.  Wow.  Writing a review wasn’t so bad.  I feel pretty good about it.  Who knows, I may or may not volunteer to write the next one.  The next one! It is happening.

Stay classy.  


The world is not getting any easier. We all know that. This country is plummeting headfirst into a second recession, another hurricane is preparing to batter the East Coast, our well-meaning attempts to bring some peace to the Middle East have only brought war, and this planet whizzes and tumbles through space, the soul transport in humanity’s endless and seemingly fruitless quest for meaning. All this means is that we, as people, have to reach out and grasp at any semblance of purpose and joy we can. As fraught as the world is with cares, it is also teeming with wild beauty and soul-stirring moments, and it is up to all of us to use our very few (and getting fewer) days left on this planet to find whatever hope we can and fill ourselves up to overflowing with it.    
                                                                                                                 Like most people, we, the Friends in Pie Places, have decided to do that with pizza.                                                                                                                                                                                                                         
Our goal is to be friends and make new friends around as many different kinds of pizza that we can. Every two weeks, we pick a different pizza place in the Lincoln/Omaha/wherever area and we’ll go there and we’ll eat as much pizza as we can eat. And then we’ll come back here and write about it here on this blog. We’ll post pictures. We’ll ask questions. We’ll review the pizza. We’ll sing songs? Not sure about that last one, but let’s just say we wouldn’t be surprised if someone sang some sort of song. It’s a celebration of what can happen when groups of people get around one big table full of pizza, so, obviously, anything is possible.                                                                                                                                                                                                                  
Anyone is invited to come along with us and everyone is invited to keep up with us here, where we’ll tell funny stories and interesting stories and lots of pizza-related things (but we hope to use the word “pizza” as broadly as possible.)                                                                                                                        
We hope you enjoy it. We hope you can come. We’re excited for the possibilities, the pizza and the people that we’ll get to know. But, mostly, we’re excited for the potential. Pizza may not be the absolute best reason to keep going in this world, but it’s definitely a reason.
 
And it’s one we plan to savor.

The world is not getting any easier. We all know that. This country is plummeting headfirst into a second recession, another hurricane is preparing to batter the East Coast, our well-meaning attempts to bring some peace to the Middle East have only brought war, and this planet whizzes and tumbles through space, the soul transport in humanity’s endless and seemingly fruitless quest for meaning. All this means is that we, as people, have to reach out and grasp at any semblance of purpose and joy we can. As fraught as the world is with cares, it is also teeming with wild beauty and soul-stirring moments, and it is up to all of us to use our very few (and getting fewer) days left on this planet to find whatever hope we can and fill ourselves up to overflowing with it.    

                                                                                                                 Like most people, we, the Friends in Pie Places, have decided to do that with pizza.                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Our goal is to be friends and make new friends around as many different kinds of pizza that we can. Every two weeks, we pick a different pizza place in the Lincoln/Omaha/wherever area and we’ll go there and we’ll eat as much pizza as we can eat. And then we’ll come back here and write about it here on this blog. We’ll post pictures. We’ll ask questions. We’ll review the pizza. We’ll sing songs? Not sure about that last one, but let’s just say we wouldn’t be surprised if someone sang some sort of song. It’s a celebration of what can happen when groups of people get around one big table full of pizza, so, obviously, anything is possible.                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

Anyone is invited to come along with us and everyone is invited to keep up with us here, where we’ll tell funny stories and interesting stories and lots of pizza-related things (but we hope to use the word “pizza” as broadly as possible.)                                                                                                                        

We hope you enjoy it. We hope you can come. We’re excited for the possibilities, the pizza and the people that we’ll get to know. But, mostly, we’re excited for the potential. Pizza may not be the absolute best reason to keep going in this world, but it’s definitely a reason.

 

And it’s one we plan to savor.