Wow! Where to start with the disappointment after taking the reviews of the folks here. First, I have to say that I used to work at a pizza joint - Straw Hat back in the day and have made too many pizzas to count some bad, some good and a few excellent ones and still have the burn marks from the ovens on my forearms to remind me Second, I'm not a pizza snob b/c there are plenty of "hole in the wall" joynts I frequent - I look for tasty food and this place ain't serving it up. I give them 2 stars for having a menu broad enough to include serving (flavorless) pesto and for passing the gastronomic test of my twin 7yo nephews and my 8yo daughter. However, my 14yo was pissed I went there instead of Napoli's and my wife was pissed I went here b/c I was "being too lazy to go a little further (to Mountain Mike's) for good pizza." Crust: thick and doughy (too much extra flour left on too) Sauce: flavorless (both the pesto and tomato sauces) Toppings: good amount of pepperoni, the tidbits of tomato placed on the pesto pizza was pathetic. Cheese! Was minimal in places and thick in other places - inconsistent cheese distribution. In Vallejo stick with Mtn. Mike's, Napoli's off Columbus Pkwy (which is technically Benicia) or a national chain. I haven't tried Pizza Pirate. Nujo's was ok [2.75 star - haven't been back], and forget Pizza Guys. Put it this way GNY Pizza and Pizza Guys - I'd rather eat a frozen Gino's Pizza, or take-n-bake from Safeway, CostCo or that place that only sells take-n-bake pizzas. I hope GNY Pizza improves.
Recently went by, beginning of Apr 08, and wanted to report. I arrived around 5pm-ish, place was empty for the moment. The woman who was working was pleasant and talkative. She called the owner after I mentioned chowhound.com. As I was waiting for my 3-way another guy walked in and ordred his "usual," the BBQ chicken sandwich. I spoke to him and he had nothing but praise. See the Quick Score and read on below if you like. Quick Score [out of 5]: Employee/Owner - 5 Value - 4 Ribs - 4.25 [succulent, good natural flavor, fell off the bone] Brisket - 3.25 [cut a little thick for my taste and a lil dry BUT made for a good sandwich the next day] Links - 2.75 [not bad, not good, nothing to set them apart from your standard store bought link] Chicken - I didn't have it but must be AT LEAST above average if some guy keeps going back for it. Physical plant - 4.5 [clean, well organized, a couple of TV's to watch the game, nice beer selection and wine. Oh, there's patio out back]. Return Visit Probability - 3.75
The highlights of my visit was talking to the owner, the friendly employee and the RIBS [in no particular order]. The ribs were really great [not the best I've ever had but damn good]. I like to taste the meat and not have my bbq smothered in sauce. These came with the sauce on the side and after tasting them, the ribs didn't need it [only used the sauce to add a different twist to the flavor]. A man with no teeth could enjoy these - they were moist, meaty, tender to the point of ALMOST falling off the bone [in reality you don't really want your ribs to fall apart on you]. To get a 5, they needed a little more of the "rub" flavor to come through - it was subtle but quite good compliment to the natural meat flavors. Also, I think the place would be a good spot to go hang-out, eat some good ribs, have some beers and watch the game or kick back with friends out on the patio. I can't comment on the sides - didn't eat mine, my co-workers did and no one complained [but there weren't any raves either]. Random last thoughts: I did get French Bread which I thought was a different but good twist to the typical slices of bread given elsewhere. Sauce, the mild is mild and a little sweet - not my style but it wasn't bad sauce just not my style; I'll have to go for a spicier version next time. Oh, did I say that I liked the RIBS?!?!?!
As a student at Hastings, Original Joe's filled the tummy a few times over the years. Nope, not a place for the gourmand but it filled a niche. I hope it reopens too and I have to say aside from being hungry if I was ever bored [from studying some inane legal construct] heading over to Original Joe's provided "entertainment" that you could find NOWHERE else and if you told anyone they wouldn't believe you.