In our little corner of the world we are blessed with an almost inordinate number of pizza shops (we used to call them pizza parlors eons ago) that are within a 5-minute car jaunt of my domicile.
We have the venerable Columbus favorite, Donatos, the ubiquitous Pizza Hut and Dominos as well, in addition to a number of smaller shops, most of which serve a quality pie for a reasonable amount.
Romeo's is a growing chain based in Cleveland, which took over a Minute Man location, swapping out one chain for another, as the Minute Man moved to a different location. PaPa Joe's, another chain, came in briefly but moved from a very small former Dairy Queen building into the former location (larger) of Catalfino's, a locally-owned shop, which took over yet another shop's larger location closer to traffic. We have a Grapevine, a Taranto's Pizza Barn, Pizzeria New York, a Hungry Howie's (chain), and the recent return of Little Caesars, which features a large pie for $5.00, with no advance ordering needed. Years ago when we were desperate for pizza and low on cash, LC's had a 2-fer-tenner deal, but the quality was sorely lacking. They have improved their quality considerably, and the price cannot be beat. Another long-time Columbus pizza name is Cardo's, which has had a boom-and-bust run for many years, and which came back to town last year. It is still here (so far).
One small chain, Eddie's, opened without fanfare, served a decent product for a good price, then shuttered the doors within a month. It, of course, was in a location that had been home to several short-lived shops, attached to a Sunoco mini-mart. Location, location, location, anyone?
A 30-minute drive out to Buckeye Lake is our family's favorite place, the Pizza Cottage, who now has a location right here in Pickerington. Good, but not as good as the original, although much closer.
Outside of our 5-minute car jaunt range is Kingy's Pizza Pub, a good-sized family and sports gathering place which serves a sweet pineapple and pepperoni pizza, a particular favorite of Bro and me.
And then comes the news that the national chain Papa John's will be moving across from Donatos shortly.
Some would say, "Enough already with all those pizza places!"
I am not one of those barbarians, however. All this for a product that I did not know existed until I was 6 or 7 years old, when Beloved Father bowled one year for Pizza Man, and late one night brought home a deliciously aroma'd pepperoni pizza, and my food world has not been the same since.