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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Webster 99-cent slices: Martino's and Express Mart

I last reported on Martino's in Webster in April 2011.Prior to that I did a post on Martino's 99-cent slices offered on Monday and Tuesdays. I gave my 2011 pie a B and my 2009 slices an A-minus.
I returned recently for an update on those slices. But along the way I noticed that the Express Mart on Ridge Road was also offering 99-cent slices. Driven by hunger mixed with curiosity, I stopped in.
My pepperoni slice was, well, OK. The underside was pale but non-greasy, and showed that it had been baked on a perforated tray. It had a pleasantly bready aroma.
The crust was just a little crisp on the bottom surface, but otherwise soft. Not a bad crust, but not too good either. It brought to mind a soft breadstick, of the type you get at certain chain Italian restaurants.
The toppings were likewise not bad, but unremarkable. A thin but uniform layer of browned mozzarella, basic tomato sauce, thin-sliced pepperoni, and a sprinkling of dried herbs. 
OK, so on to Martino's.
Here I got two cheese slices. I was asked if I wanted them reheated, and I said yes. The minute or two in the oven yielded a crust that was not quite as crisp as what I'd gotten before, but it was still pretty good. The crust was on the thin side of medium, and had a very nice breadlike flavor and aroma. The medium-thick lip was satisfyingly crisp.
It was a well balanced slice as well. Perhaps a tad skimpy on the cheese, and I wondered if rising dairy prices were a factor. But with a thin slice, I don't like my pizza blanketed in a thick layer of cheese anyway, and for 99 cents a slice I couldn't complain.
The sauce was pretty middle-of-the-road, with a tomatoey flavor and a medium consistency. I detected some oregano, I think from a sprinkling of dried herbs.
Between the two of these, I'd say that Martino's emerged as the clear winner. These weren't world-class slices, but I had no major issues with them, and if price is a factor, you can't do much better for 99 cents. (The bottom photo, by the way, puts a Martino's slice and an Express Mart slice side by side.)
This time around, Martino's rates a B. Express Mart, a C.
Martino's Pizzeria
160 W Main St, Webster

Mon. - Thu. 11 am – 10 pm
Fri. & Sat. 11 am – 11 pm

Sun. noon  – 10 pm

Express Mart, 819 Ridge Rd., Webster

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