Akron Pizza Task Force is coming to a pizza shop near you
by Stephanie Baker, Kevin Wirth and Justin Lyons
Hello, Akron! We are Akron’s Pizza Task Force. We will work tirelessly to serve you and deploy to all the pizza places around town to ensure you find the best Akron has to offer. Our goal is to make you as excited about pizza as we are. The Task Force will evaluate pizza based on cheese, sauce, crust, cook, price and overall experience. Let’s dive into our first mission, Your Pizza Shop.
Your Pizza Shop was created in Massillon, Ohio dating all the way back to 1951. That is 65 years in the pizza business, in case you didn’t do the math. Almost 30 years later, they turned into a franchise and, as of today, have 11 locations spread between Ohio and Florida.
We ordered from Your Pizza Shop, located on 1077 W. Exchange St., which shares a lot with Every Blooming Thing. We’d seen this place many times, and wondered what kind of pizza lies within. We hadn’t heard much about this shop beforehand, so we were eager to mark it off of our list.
Our order was a plain cheese pizza and The Meatless Gourmet. At first glance, the pizzas looked as if they had been cooked at two different shops. The cook on the cheeses looked vastly different, with the plain pizza looking slightly overdone and the gourmet slightly underdone. Cooking a pizza with a “gourmet” amount of toppings isn’t easy, especially when delivery times are over 45 minutes.
The meatless gourmet had a generous coating of small cuts of mushrooms, green peppers, banana peppers, black olives, and red peppers. The flavor combination wasn’t anything special or carefully planned, but it fit the bill. Toppings are the typical variety, canned or frozen, but of average freshness.
The cheese pizza was browned and shimmering. After opening the box we were ready to demolish this pizza. The cheese itself had an amount of grease that was to be expected. The sauce was simple and didn’t overpower the flavor of the cheese. The crust was golden brown, crisp on the outside, but a little dry on the inside. If this cheese pizza were to fight The Meatless Gourmet it would be over in minutes. These two pizzas were considerably different, and it wasn’t only by their appearance.
Overall, we found Your Pizza Shop to be good, and at moments, even a little great. It isn’t the kind of pizza that is a product of passion, but it is a pizza you can pick up after a busy day to share with friends and family and not feel too bad. The prices were fair and for large pizza toppings they didn’t gouge you like some places do. If one thing could be improved, it would be the crust. If granted a second thing, it would be toppings not out of a bag or can.
(Featured photo of cheese pizza from Your Pizza Shop by Justin Lyons/The Devil Strip)