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Monday, June 27, 2011

Penfield Wegmans

I did a post about the pizza at the Pittsford Wegmans back in January 2010. I thought it was a decent, if not outstanding, approximation of New York style pizza, and gave it a B-minus.
Since then, I've heard from more than one person that the pizza at the Penfield Wegmans is very good, so I finally got around to checking it out. Supposedly Penfield has a certain type of pizza oven that's supposed to result in better, crisper pizza.
I got a cheese slice and a white slice. I was initially slightly peeved when the server didn't give me the biggest slice out of the cheese pie, which was unevenly cut, with some slices noticeably bigger than others. Yes, I could've specified which one I wanted, but to my mind, the server should always pick out the largest slice (ideally, of course, the slices would all be the same size, but that's another matter).
All right, well, I got over that. How was the pizza?
A bit disappointing, I'm afraid, after I'd been led to believe that it would be quite good. The underside of the cheese slice was a pale yellow, with some corn meal visible. It was topped with a moderate amount of cheese that had exuded an orangey oil that I generally associate with cheaper ingredients.
The slice was floppy and very foldable, so much so that I could roll it up without any cracking or crackling on the surface of the underside. There was some nice crunch along the thin lip at the edge, but otherwise the crust was rather dull and not at all bready.
It was generously topped with a thick tomato-pasty sauce, and while I hate to complain about getting too much of anything, the sauce was almost too heavy for such a thin crust.
The crust, at least, on my white pizza slice was a little better, with several browned, though not charred, spots underneath. The slice was foldable, but cracked a bit down the middle when I folded it in half, which was a good sign, and it was indeed more crisp than my cheese slice, with a breadier flavor, aroma and texture. The lip was considerably wider than on the cheese slice, with the result that the cheese got pushed off closer to the tip.
The moderately applied cheese was bubbly and brown on top, and was dusted with flecks of some unidentified dried herbs. A garlicky aroma emanated from the slice, but it seemed more like garlic powder than fresh garlic to me, and I did not see any bits of actual garlic anywhere (what I at first took to be finely chopped garlic turned out to be Romano).
Overall, however, this slice seemed a little "flat" to me, flavorwise. I know a white pizza is apt to have a more subtle flavor than a red pizza, but this just seemed a bit dull-tasting to me.
Neither of these was a terrible slice of pizza. On the contrary, they were pretty decent. But again, I'd been expecting something better from this particular Wegmans location. The cheese slice tasted pretty good, but had a less-than-stellar crust, and the white slice had a much better crust, but was lacking in flavor. I'm giving both of them a C.
Wegmans Penfield, 2157 Penfield Rd., Penfield 14526. 248-3200


  1. I've found that asking for pizza "well done" at Wegman's results in a much better pizza. Very good, in fact. Getting it well done makes a big difference. They tend to under-cook their pizza.

  2. I know you don't typically review pizza chains, but I'm curious about your thoughts about Domino's changes to their pizza. I prefer the local joints myself, but sometimes you get stuck in an airport or small town where a chain is the only viable option.

  3. If you're talking about the changes they made a couple of years ago, I tried it and didn't like it. The crust was still soft and lifeless. If there's been some more recent change let me know, as I'm unaware of it.

  4. Not sure when the changes were made but I had one about 5 years ago and then again last week. I found it to have a good flavor but a bit too bready. Built for speed of consumption not to savor I'd say. Surprisingly not so greasy as before though. I think I'll keep Brooklyn Joe's as my go to place though.

  5. We get pizza at the Penfield Wegmans all the time and really enjoy it. I don't like the thicker bready pizza that's common in Rochester, so I like the thin crust at Wegmans.

    I like their whole pizzas better than the slices. It seems like they undercook the slices in case they need to be rewarmed. But that's just a theory.

  6. It might be a good idea to always ask for your slice(s) to be rewarmed, even if the pie just came out of the oven.