Extreme Pizza’s risky combos pay off with big flavor
November 19, 2013
By David Hayes
We don’t usually review restaurant chains, but instead try to stick with local cuisine. Technically, Extreme Pizza is a chain, with franchises in 11 states.
However, good luck finding the next nearest one outside Issaquah, as our fair city has the only one in Washington.
Also, just about the only thing extreme is the sports the founder is renowned for doing, from skydiving to snowboarding.
However, all that said, you can still get a damn fine pie at Issaquah’s Extreme Pizza.
The first test of a pizza joint is how well they execute their signature pie. For Extreme, it’s their Yard Sale — essentially a combo with all the regular suspects on it: Italian sausage, pepperoni, salami, black olives, mushrooms, green peppers, red onions, tomatoes, tomato sauce, and both mozzarella and cheddar cheeses.
Now, I’ve had in my travels restaurants that take those same ingredients and make the most bland tasting creations that lack any memorable flavor. Not so with Extreme. All the ingredients coalesce into an enjoyable bite, with even the cheese sitting atop the crust coming forth at the end for a tasty afterthought.
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Speaking of the crust, Extreme Pizza also offers gluten free and wheat options, adding a nice touch on choices.
On the other half of the large I ordered, I wanted something that qualified for their more “extreme” options. Many combinations on their menu exist that aren’t found on the typical pizza, be it their four-cheese Holy Cow! with Swiss, gorgonzola, mozzarella and fontina with roasted walnuts and sage, or their Hanoi Fever featuring shredded pork marinated in spicy hoisin sauce, peanuts, green onions, jalapeños, carrots and fresh cilantro.
Breaking through my indecision, I went with the Boar’Der with shredded pork marinated in a sweet BBQ sauce, red onions, cilantro, and cheddar and mozzarella cheeses. The tangy flavor worked, leaving me wondering what other pizzas with nontraditional ingredients to try next.
Even if not in the mood for a pie, Extreme Pizza has an extended menu that entices, with choices from calzones and chicken wings to sub sandwiches and even nine types of salads. Not bad for a hole-in-the-wall dining facility.
At a time when pizza prices seem to be skyrocketing around town, it was refreshing to pay just $20.95 for my large, 14-incher. The service is always friendly, with every departing diner getting a shout-out from behind the counter.
In a crowded pizza market, make sure to add Extreme Pizza to your dining options.