EDITOR’S NOTE: The Dining Duo are a couple of foodies who enjoy eating out and sampling the local cuisine in the Mid-South. To ensure the reviews are unbiased and that the duo remain anonymous, their identities are masked behind their favorite comic book heroes.
5205 Airways Blvd
4 out of 5 POWs
Pizza is one of those foods that is different everywhere you go. No two restaurant pizzas taste alike. For some, it’s the crust - thin crust, hand tossed, deep dish - that sets them apart. For others, it may be the sauce. And, of course, the toppings make all the difference in the world too. Try and get three people to agree on what they want on a pizza and you know what I’m talking about. Pineapple anyone? There are just so many combinations.
We have tried a lot of pizza restaurants in the ti-state area. But one that has slipped under our radar screen, one that we did not know was out there, is Rise Pies, which is located at the Tanger Outlet mall. When I pulled up the menu, I was impressed with some of the pizza combos they offer. I immediately told Live Wire and Joker to check out their menu and it wasn’t a hard sell to convince them to give it a try.
According to their website, Rise Pies is a chain that has its roots in Youngstown, Ohio, which apparently has a very vibrant Italian-American community. They market their pizza as “pizza perfection in 160 seconds.” The menu contains quality pizza combos made with fresh ingredients and homemade recipes. Their pizzas are then cooked at 600 degrees in a wood stone oven.
Livewire is our Italian food expert in the group. She can tell when something claiming to be Italian tastes authentic or not. Originally she wanted to try the 72 Blue Combo which has buffalo chicken on it, but I had already beaten her to it. So Livewire instead decided to try out the Hawaiian Shirt Day ($13.79) combo. Yeah, she’s one of those whole like pineapple on pizza. This particular combo comes with pineapple, bacon, diced red onions, shredded Mozzarella cheese, Italian tomato sauce, and a drizzle of BBQ sauce.
The super baddie was very complimentary of the toppings, which she thought worked well together. “It was good,” Livewire said. “There was a lot of toppings.” She was a little disappointed with the crust though. Rise Pies makes their crust in the Neapolitan thin crust style. You can get it hand tossed, but when when I placed the order I went with the thin crust on all three. Livewire thought the crust was under-cooked. “The sauces were good. I liked the BBQ splash. But the crust was not cooked long enough. It was only crunchy on the inside. Still, I though the whole pizza had a really good taste.”
Joker decided to try the supreme pizza ($13.79). The pie came with Italian pizza sauce, shredded Mozzarella cheese, pepperoni, sausage, red onions, bell peppers, and mushrooms. Joker had the same thought about the crust, that it hadn’t been cooked enough, but he had no complaints at all with the toppings. “The crust was a little too soft,” Joker said. “The middle of the crust had some crunch to it. It needed to be cooked some more. But it definitely has a good flavor. It has a lot of toppings on the supreme.” The Clown Prince of Crime thought the pizza was well worth the money, but it was by no means his favorite. “I would go back again,” Joker said. “But I would choose the competition like Pyro’s first.”
I thought I would spice things up a little so I ordered the 72 Blue combo ($10.99) which has buffalo sauce, shredded Mozzarella, oven roasted chicken breast, and a drizzle of Ranch. I’ve had buffalo chicken pizza before so I was really looking forward to this. I’m sad to report that I was very disappointed. Let me say this, it could just boil down to individual taste preference. The ingredients were fresh and they didn’t skimp on toppings. That’s a plus. But honestly, hoo wee! the buffalo sauce was too much, too hot, and it just overpowered everything else. I could barely taste the chicken or the cheese or the Ranch, for that matter. It was so hot that I had to go through two cans of Pepsi. It was just too hot for my liking. Maybe some of you out there like it hot. I do not.
We also decided to try Vernon’s meatballs. The order came with three very large meatballs which were slow cooked in Vernon’s classic sauce with Ricotta cheese on top. All three of us liked the meatballs but the downside was that they were cold! Whoever prepared them had not heated them long enough. “It was a good meatball,” Livewire said. “It kind of reminded me of Chef Boyardee. But it would have been really good if it had been warm.” Joker agreed. “It was good an had a nice taste,” he said. “It was just cold. It was straight out of the freezer.” I really liked the sauce and in fact, I broke off the ends of my pizza crust and used it to dip into the sauce. I also liked the Ricotta cheese.
Overall, we were neither blow away by or disappointed by the pizza at Rise Pies. It’s not the best we have ever eaten, but it’s also not the worse either. The consensus among the Dining Duo seems to be that we would recommend you try the place at least once and we would probably go back if we just happened to be out shopping at Tanger.
We give it 3 1/2 to 4 POWs.
If you have a suggestion of a restaurant that you would like to see the Dining Duo review, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or send us your comments.
Welcome to the discussion.
Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.