PizzaPlex: an odd culinary find in Mexican Town

PizzaPlex is a new restaurant in the heart of Mexican Town, where diners can find a variety of artisan pizzas.

Sarah Stevenson

PizzaPlex is a new restaurant in the heart of Mexican Town, where diners can find a variety of artisan pizzas.

Sarah Stevenson, Staff Writer

PizzaPlex, a neapolitan pizzeria and events space, according to Eater Detroit, includes freshly made, authentic Italian pizzas and other foods at affordable prices, but without the cost of the quality.    

The restaurant has been open since Sept. 9 2017, and is located on Vernor Highway in the heart of Mexican Town. It’s one of the least likely restaurants one might find there.

Although it may not be located in the safest area, customers will still feel safe and secure due to  the liveliness of the street and the multitude of people walking and enjoying their time, both inside and out of the restaurants.

While standing across the street from the pizzeria, I noticed the vibrant, purple light escaping the restaurant, which radiated from the wall decor hanging alongside some plants and family photos.

I was not a huge fan of the decorating inside of the restaurant due to the low lighting and different items, such as game machines, foosball, artwork, and many other objects, cluttering the dining area.

To me, it seemed random since there was no color scheme, theme, or specific style of decoration. Overall, the odd variety of objects and decor scattered around the venue was distracting from the dinner.

The venue was separated into two rooms, where the front part of the restaurant had booths and a bar, and the back part was more like a dining room with large tables and surprisingly, a projector screen.

The backyard, or patio, of the restaurant seemed unorganized and to me, looked like it was thrown together, with two picnic tables and a few succulents placed on top of them. Although the design of this pizzeria was quite laid-back, I felt like it needed more plants or decoration to brighten it up.      

I visited PizzaPlex with my family and we ordered five unique pizzas to taste and decide which were our favorites.

The first pizza to come out was the Diana, which is similar to a Margherita pizza; it is a classic mozzarella cheese pizza, but with eggplant, cherry tomatoes, onions, basil, and drizzled olive oil.

The first bite was filled with chewy dough and an abundance of flavors with the fresh tomatoes, thin sauce, basil and olive oil. It combined into one to form a new, yet delicious pizza.

The crust was “flame-blistered”, according to the PizzaPlex menu, and didn’t have a sweet taste that most American-style pizzas have. The flavor was similar to sourdough, or something with a little more bitterness than sweetness.  

It was a kind of pizza that I have never tasted before, and wasn’t similar to anything one might find at Jets, Hungry Howie’s, Little Caesars, etc.

The next to arrive was called the Quattro Formaggi. The first thing I noticed was the fact that it had no tomato sauce and contained a mixture of different kinds of cheeses. This was the only one out of the five that I didn’t try due to the fact that I’m not a huge fan of strong cheese, which this pizza was known for.

The following pizza was the Porcini. This pizza had the strangest topping, which were pears. However, when I tasted it, all of the flavors of the different cheeses and arugula mixed together, which overall muted the taste of the pears.    

After the Porcini came the Nikolette. I really enjoyed this one, but it wasn’t my absolute favorite. It had mushrooms, roasted poblano peppers, basil, and many other ingredients. The toppings were a little bit thicker with all of its cheeses, which to me made it tastier.

The last, and long-awaited pizza to arrive was the Margherita. It was a classic Italian pizza, with slices of mozzarella placed around the top, which left large portions of tomato sauce appear from underneath. The whole thing was topped with a single basil leaf.

This pizza was simple but delicious. It had a fluffy crust, just like all of the others, and combined easy ingredients into one to form a fantastic pizza.

In addition to pizza, the restaurant also serves desserts and other foods, such as sandwiches and sides.

A great part about this pizzeria was the fact that the prices were extremely affordable, ranging from $5 to $10 for the pizzas, $4 to $6 for the sandwiches, $2 to $8 for sides, and the desserts were all $5.

Although the food was quite appetising, a downside about this restaurant was the service. The pizzas did not come out all at once.

Although this pizzeria has downsides, such as the decor and service, it combined an interesting venue with fantastic food at an affordable price. It’s a place I would definitely go back to again and overall adds a new flavor to Mexican Town and southwest Detroit.