As the tour of downtown food stops continues, we are hopping into one of the most widely debated foods - so much so that I may have to put together a city-wide pizza tour and channel my inner Charles Boyle. I'm not even mad about it.
Pizza is just one of those foods that everyone has a strong feeling about - whether it's who invented it or what the best crust style is or getting passionate about toppings. Just ask a room full of people how they feel about pineapple on their pizza - you'll see what I mean!
And while you won't need it to read this review, you might need to stop at home for your pizza bib before diving into the pies at Old School Pizza.
Old School Pizza is the youngest child of Paul & Krista Minnich and is truly a family business with their older children helping out around the restaurant. They have been making wood-fired pizzas for years and love the added layer it adds to such a universally-loved food. It shows. My impression before knowing their story was that this was a family-run business. They have built family into their foundation and carry it through operations.
While it may seem like this spot popped up out of nowhere in December of 2020, it's evident that a lot of time and thought went into bringing St. Thomas such a unique menu and all the incredible "old-school" details throughout the space.
Paul & Krista wanted to use food to bring people together. "We have always been passionate about eating big meals around a table, and while a pizza restaurant is not the exact same thing, we love the relationships built around a table. If our restaurant can play a small role in bringing people closer together, we're thrilled."
I am generally hesitant to use phrases like "something for everyone". But with an extensive collection of Classics (and twists on the classics like the sought-after Pepperoni Supreme - stepped up with ricotta and honey drizzle), vegetarian options, house favourites like the Red Caesar, gluten-free, cauliflower crust and a vegan cheese option - they have done an incredible job providing for their customers.
For my visit, I phoned ahead to ensure a timed pick up that was convenient. Calling before 3 PM is recommended on the website if you want a high demand dinner slot on a Friday or Saturday.
A lot of fun went into creating the menu and it was full of anticipation of sharing the final product - the fulfilment of the process. "Nothing makes us happier than hearing someone enjoyed eating our pizza and felt like a particularly unique flavour was made exclusively for them.".
Let me tell you, choosing was not easy - but as much as I wanted to order one of everything, I settled for sampling the Bacon Cheeseburger, Hot Honey Pepperoni, and The Buff.
Going into the meal, I thought the Bacon Cheeseburger would be my runaway favourite (I am a sucker for pickles on pizza). It was the perfect savoury burger flavour I was expecting with a tang of dill to balance the dish that I was looking for, but The Buff came out ahead. This unassuming looking pizza just had the little something extra with the creamy cheese ranch base and buffalo chicken. The Hot Honey Pepperoni followed in a close second with the sweet heat. The part that I can't stop thinking about - the wood charred, slightly chewy crust that's thin enough to make the pizza not feel heavy but sturdy enough to hold the generous toppings. In my opinion, this delivers on one of pizza's toughest hurdles.
You can check out the full menu online and they are currently open for take-out Monday - Saturday for lunch and dinner. Be sure to introduce yourself when you order and welcome the Minnich family to St. Thomas!