Mione’s – Back To The Beach

I was really hoping to like Mione’s on my first visit, but that didn’t happen.  I was also hoping to write about another great pizza joint at the Eastern Shore, but that didn’t happen either.

I love Ocean City and there’s good pizza to be had, like I mentioned in a previous post.   But this was not it.

I’m all for trying something new, and going to places that may not be the most prominent of names is a part of that.

I hadn’t heard of Mione’s until driving through the resort town last year, and I had a couple of slices that day.  I recall they weren’t that memorable.   This go around took place on a busy weekend in July, and this visit was much worse.

Mione'sSlices

I don’t know how else to put it.  The pizza and service left so much to be desired.   I understand during the Summertime that slices and certain preferences can be unavailable at any time.  However, during my visit, no standard slices were available. There was no cheese, nor pepperoni, nor white.   The wait time on the former to come out, I was told, was nearly 30 minutes.  Not many people trying to get a slice, or most foods to go, would be willing to wait even half that time.

My negativity is not necessarily based on the lack of slices, but on what was available.

Thankfully, the chicken and vegetable pesto, white pizza was available.  And a white veggie which included eggplant was also one of the few slices ready to be heated and eaten within minutes.  Now I understand why.

Both slices were disappointing.   The dough and crust didn’t taste right.  It was crisp but not in a good way Pieces of crust were falling off and tasting like it was burnt toast.  Good pizza is good pizza, and it can withstand being heated and then reheated many times over.  I imagine the reheating process made both of these worse over time.

The chicken didn’t taste fresh and neither did the vegetables that  came with it.  The roasted red peppers didn’t have much flavor.   The silver lining was the pesto. Pesto is always good and even this wasn’t the best tasting pesto.

The vegetable slice was much worse  I’m glad I was forced to try a new slice with the eggplant but the results were abysmal.  The eggplant, red peppers, and I think those were mushrooms, did not make a good melange of anything.

Needless to say, I barely ate a third of either slice.  I don’t like wasting food but I didn’t feel good eating this and saw no point in forcing the issue.

Mione's

Despite my harshness, I will be willing to try some other slices.  There is much on the menu to choose from, in term of pizza, so next time I’m back, I’ll give ’em another shot.   And the fact that the staff was so friendly albeit stressed and seemed rush plays a factor in why I will go back, and also why the pizza was disappointing based upon this visit.

The pizza this time around wasn’t good, but they all can’t be winners.

Thanks so much.

Best,

Ideen

Johnny’s On The Spot

After last week I may just do beach related pizza posts into September.  I shall see where the wind takes me.

Johnny's

Johnny’s is a pizzeria that is one of the newer pizza parlors to surface. When one pizza place opened up, it seems so many followed.  If it wasn’t for the to go box pictured below, I wouldn’t have known they set up shop in 2010.  But 5-10 years would have been my hypothesis.  Now I’m willing to bet the amount of places in OC to get a slice or a pie are in at least in the 100+ range.

Like many of these other comfort food locations, they’re open into the wee hours of the morning.  So if a quick slice or two to go is what you’re looking for, they will oblige and with pleasure.

I’ve had slices from here in the past and did not care for them.   They were adequate.  For after a night of going out they were purposeful but I didn’t like the feeling in the morning.  I guess that’s the point.

They have quite the expansive menu and many specialty pies to choose from.  For purposes of this visit, I ordered a pie for friends and I to try.   I got really adventurous here.

Johnny'sThaiChicken

The Thai Chicken Pizza was something else.  I had no expectations.  It turned out better than I thought.   If it seems like it’s just a bunch of items thrown together, then you would be correct.  That doesn’t mean it can’t be good.  The peanut and ginger sauce was a bit aggressive that it was a bit hard to eat in spots.  It was spread randomly all over.

Aside from that I was pleasantly surprised.  The mix of mozzarella and cheddar really came together well. And I love onions.  They threw a lot of whole pieces on there as you can see.    But not only white onions (which are not listed as part of the pie but were included anyways) but the green ones as well.  Which are always great.  If there were carrots I barely noticed them.  Maybe the white onions were the substitute. The peanuts were a nice touch too.  It really tasted like a Thai dish or salad.

Johnny'sThaiChicken2

What really makes this pie however, is the chicken. It tasted a lot fresher than I thought it would.   Kudos to that.  The crust was a nice mix of crispy and soft that it didn’t detract in any way from the pie.

So in hindsight this was a better pie than I realized. It wasn’t the greatest.  But this was a solid indluging that will make me want to come back and try something else.

Johnny'sToGoB

The bar and restaurant, along with the carry out area, is usually always packed in the peak months.  This means getting there at the right time can be a challenge.

Till the next visit to the beach.

Best,

Ideen

An Ocean City Favorite

Whether it’s the locals in town or folks on vacation, people have sung the praises of Trattoria Lombardi’s (or just Lombardi’s for short) in Ocean City, MD.

When I mentioned to my fellow pizza pals that I wanted to focus on pizzerias by the Maryland and Delaware Beaches, Lombardi’s was the top request and suggestion.

I am grateful to only live a couple of hours from the Eastern Shore.  And I am grateful to have made a visit to this famous restaurant during 4th of July weekend.

And the fact that it was during the holidays will be taken into consideration.

Lombardi'sEntrance

The interior is very authentic.  It’s an older restaurant and I like it that way.  There was really no chance to take photos inside, since it was such a sea of humanity. And what I would try to capture would be lost in the shuffle.  The place was packed and the lines to get a table or even to order food to go were growing by the minute.  There was such a frenzy and I wouldn’t expect anything less during such a hectic time of year.

I ordered three pies to go, for my friends and I to enjoy.

Lombardi'sMenu

While scanning the menu I was pleased to see a special Summer Pizza.  Of course I had to satisfy my curiosity.

Lombardi'sSummer

Unfortunately this was my least favorite.   The tomatoes and basil on the white pie really didn’t click for me.  It wasn’t bad.  It just didn’t come together how I had hoped.  The dough on all three were cooked very well.  It was the right about of crispness and softness at the same time.  The visuals are a delight.  I love how the  cheese looked so magnificent melted into the crust.    But for this one, maybe it was a rush job.  The tomatoes don’t need to be cooked all the way but it felt like they were thrown on at the last-minute.

Lombardi'sWhite

Next, we have the White Pizza.  I didn’t realize until I was eating it that it had onions.  I thought it was a mistake or a few onions had spilled over from another order by mistake.  It wasn’t until I looked at the menu that I saw this was their special version.  And I really liked this one.  I found this very tasty and love how the onion is a part of this pie.  If you look close you may be able to see them in this picture.  This was my favorite of the three.

Lombardi'sCheese

And finally, it’s the Cheese.   So many people have told me this is one of their favorite pizzas at the beach or anywhere in Maryland for that matter.  So I had high expectations.  They did not reach them.  I thought it was good but it didn’t turn out as great as I hoped.  I’m not sure what I was hoping for but this was a notch or two below that.

Nevertheless, my buds and I ate this pizza up over the next couple of days because it was very good.  And it tasted great reheated.  But I don’t think it’s quite the blow away pizza others have touted.

But as I previously stated, I understand this tasting fell on a holiday weekend, so I will definitely give it another go.  And I would eat here again anyways, either in-house or carry-out.  I found this to be a very good but not quite the amazing feast I felt would happen.

Lombardi'sSignage

In a way I blame myself for such high expectations.   But I can’t way to go back on another day and have those same expectations.  I believe the hype!

Lombardi'sToGo

If you’d like to read my previous resort themed pizza posts, click here and here.

Thanks so much.

Best,

Ideen

Tugo, or not Tugo

Ocean City, MD has always brought me found memories, from when I was a kid.   A lot has changed but a lot has remained the same.

There’s a lot more to do as an adult, in terms of bars, clubs, and restaurants.  But, this resort town prides itself on being a family destination, first and foremost.

I remember eating Pizzas Tugos when I was a kid and thinking it was the greatest pizza on earth.  Actually every pizzeria I ate at felt like the greatest thing in the world!

Either my taste buds have expanded or I just grew up.  Because these two slices I got were anything but the greatest.

TugosSlices

How great and greasy does that appear?  Well it may look appealing to the late night delivery and pick-up crowd, but that still doesn’t make it any better.

I understand this is a small sample size, but it was still disappointing.   It was way too loaded with grease and fat.  Now or a night after the bars, that might be just fine.  But I can only imagine what you’d be feeling the next morning.

It was also very salty.  I do like how there was loads of cheese bleeding into the to go (tugo? hehe) box.   But the cheese was a big mound of salt and other problems.

The sauce tasted a bit funny too.   It just didn’t go with the cheese or the crust.  And the latter was a bit soggy.  I tried to eat what I could, but I had to give up.

TugosBanner

Some of the other problems included the service.  There was no line in front of me, and I waited a good 15 minutes for my order.   You would think with all that time passing, that my pizza would be either heated up just right or a bit lukewarm, or maybe a little of both.   No, this was scolding hot and not in a good way.   My tongue burned but fortunately I survived and didn’t need a fire extinguisher to save me.

In keeping up with trying to find positives, I do like that they have their own design paper for carry out, which you can see in the first picture above.  Other than that I don’t know.    Well, the pepperoni was ok.  I picked those off and ate those on its own.

Now when many of us are at the beach, or away on vacation, our goal is not necessarily to look for amazing, knock your socks off pizza.  But it should at least taste good.   This wasn’t the worst but I found it mediocre and boring.   I don’t see the point in coming back to visit anytime soon.

TugosInLightsTugoSign

This shouldn’t sway you from not wanting to try them out.  You may love it.  I know a few who do. Here’s their menu.

Summer is in full swing, so more OC and Eastern Shore reviews will be forthcoming.    For a prior review from Memorial Day Weekend, click here.

All The Best,

Ideen