I once saw a t-shirt online that said “Pizza is the best.” I certainly couldn’t agree more. It is one of my favorite food groups. I could eat it every day. As long as I have coffee, pizza is the only other thing I need to ingest in my life on a regular basis. I have tried many kinds from many places. But Mystic Pizza was the first and perhaps only pizza I have tried that has been in the movies.
Mystic Pizza was a popular movie in 1988 that featured Julia Roberts as a young struggling waitress trying to find her way in the world. It was actually filmed on location at the real pizzeria the movie was named for located in Mystic, Connecticut. I first came to visit during the summer of 2009 and recently went back during October 2011.
My first visit I was so excited just to be going. I love going to the locations of real events and this place looks the same as it did in 1988. It is in great shape and has movie memorabilia all over the place. At first I wasn’t even thinking of how the food was going to be, I was just happy to be there. Then I placed my order: a pie with black olives, mushrooms, and gorgonzola cheese. My mouth is watering right now thinking about it. When it came to my table that first time it appeared fake to me. It had the perfect golden colored crust and a smell that seemed like delicious food infused perfume as I inhaled. Those first bites were even better than I could have dreamed. I just closed my eyes and fought back tears of pure joy.
After such a hearty meal I walked around the area a bit. Mystic is such an adorable town even at night. It is like being in a movie even when cameras aren’t around. There is this great ice cream shop a few blocks down where homemade ice cream is being handed out as fast as it can be scooped out. It is probably among the best I have ever had. It over hangs a drawn bridge, which is where I sat to eat my ice cream taking in every detail of my mini-vacation.
When I went back this past year I was so excited it was on my agenda from the moment I knew I would be in town visiting friends. I just had to get my hands on this pizza. Walking back in to this familiar place I was thrilled with the sights and smells. I knew what I was ordering without even looking at the menu. But apparently you can’t repeat history. This time my pizza was not the heavenly creation I had longed for. It was under-cooked. Even though we sent it back to the kitchen it was still cold when we got it. Our service was not good this second time around despite it being a lot less crowded. Something was amiss and it was devastating. Finally I just gave up.
Even though I had this bad experience as I write this and relive my memories I still am inspired by my first time and am hopeful that when I am in town again Mystic Pizza will live up to my expectations. After that first visit I would have placed Mystic Pizza easily as one of my top five favorite pizza places of all time. With a statistic like that I have to give it a second chance. We all deserve that.
http://www.mysticpizza.com/store_locator.asp Now Mystic Pizza is also in your grocer’s freezer!