Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Pizza Time #3 - Rocky Rococo's

So, have you ever looked at a fast food item and say "that doesn't look anything like the photo in the advertising?"  Well, I would say that Rocky Rococo consistently puts out fast food that looks as delicious as it's photographs.

The appearance is pleasing, as you anticipate the melty cheese and savory toppings piled upon a bountiful crust.  Yep, it looks good.
 But it's not quite as tasty as it looks, sad to say.

Rocky Rococo is a fast food pizza chain specializing in slices all day.  They do make whole pizzas, too, and are fun for a party.  Several locations have a modest, but nice, salad bar.  They also offer appetizers and a couple of pasta dishes (mainly spaghetti).  As far as quality pizza goes, it certainly compares to great pizza the same way a Whopper compares to a great hamburger.  Good for what it is, but would rarely win a contest.

Overall Impression:  I ordered a slice of Pepperoni, which took no wait whatsoever.  My food was on my tray before I paid!  This is a trade-off, because it means that my item was cooked and boxed up well before I arrived.  So, the temperature was moderate, not piping hot.  On the plus side, I was able to eat it right away.  The restaurant had ample seating, but it was basic fast-food booths and tables.  Nothing special.  It was "fine."  Score:  2 out of 5

Crust:  The crust is the main event, always.  But Rocky's takes this to the extreme.  If my pizza weighed 10 ounces, it meant that there was 9 ounces of dough.  This is a very bready pizza.  It's not bad in and of itself.  It has a slightly sweet flavor to the dough, similar to a good yeast roll.  But it was heavy and dense.  When you look at the pizza, you see a thick slice of deep dish.  But, being from Chicago, the "deep dish" part of deep dish for me is usually cheese and toppings.  Not bread.  Score: 3 out of 10.

Sauce:  The sauce has a mild sweetness flavored with oregano and garlic.  Not my favorite, but good if you like you sauce on the sweeter side.  Score: 2 out of 5

Cheese:  Barely there.  Stringy cheese, but not much of it.  Enough to look ample when you look at it.  Until you bite it and you see that it's mostly crust in the cross section.  The cheese is deceptive.  (Note:  I have had Rocky's plenty of times at multiple locations, so I know their typical product.  This was their typical product.) Results improve when you get more toppings on a Rockys pizza.  The toppings help the overall product, and cheese is not a "main" ingredient . . . just another of the toppings.  Score: 1 out of 5

Pepperoni:  Decent pepperoni with a little zest.  They describe it as "spicy pepperoni," although I wouldn't characterize it that way.  Still, it had good flavor and a bit of a crisp edge to it, which I like.  Score: 3 out of 5.

Price/Value:  This isn't bad, priced at $3.25 for a slice.  It's a heavy slice, and you certainly get full on Rocky's pizza.  But that's mainly because of the heavy crust.  I would recommend ordering a whole pizza be made up, for freshness sake.  If you order extra cheese, you'll probably be happy.  If you need people to get good and full, you won't go wrong.  Score: 3 out of 5.

One other "experience" note.  They serve it with a fork and knife, which you'll need if the pizza is super hot.  Since it wasn't, I was able to use my preferred method: hands.  But taking a bite straight from the pie can give your face that "greasy" feeling after each bite.  Take plenty of napkins.

Overall, it is what it is.  Which is not a bad thing, just be aware of what you're getting into!  Their overall score is 14 out of 35.

Overall Pizza Standings
1.  Ian's on State - 26 points
2.  Pizza Di Roma - 17 points
3.  Rocky Rococo's - 14 points


  1. La Fortuna before their season is over!
    and delicious Pizza Brutta

  2. Ooh, thanks for the suggestions! Pizza Brutta was already on the list, but I haven't really heard about La Fortuna. I'll definitely get there, thanks!
    - JG

  3. Rocky's left Chicago back in the early 90's! They still serve them in those little boxes!

  4. Yep, I remember seeing my first Rockys - which was a drive through - somewhere in the south suburbs in 1988 or 1989. Still quite a few locations in Madison.