We’re going to start this review with an apology. No, not for choosing a national company over a local one. Nor for both of us having meaty options. No, we’re apologising for once again reviewing a Ryde-based eatery. Forgive us – it’s the lockdown, see. If we could go to a West Wight restaurant, squeeze our knees under the table and place our order with the charming and informed waiting staff you know we would. Oh, how we would. How we miss those days.
But we are obedient citizens; staying home to protect the NHS and save lives. Plus, of course, the restaurants are closed to eat-in customers. So, it’s another local takeaway for us.
We’ve been so impressed the way some of our favourite chefs and venues have adapted their wares for home delivery. Domino’s, of course, hit the ground running; the Covid19 pandemic has meant business as a kind of usual. Obviously there will be some challenging social distancing going on in the pizza kitchen and the deliverers will need to be mindful of contamination – but hey, we can’t live on our lockdown larders alone.
To minimise risk and contact, ordering is entirely online; no cash is involved, and food is delivery only, no collection. Matt downloaded the app on his smartphone and we clicked our way through the options. Well, we call them options. It’s y’know, pizza, so it’s all pretty much variations on a theme.
We chose a meal deal and opted to go large and stay home. There are a few pizza customisations: calibration of dough, alternative and extra toppings, but we stuck with Domino’s own off-the-peg combos. Cat tapped the screen and added chicken feast to our basket. Matt, naturally, chose ‘Mighty Meaty’. And, as if the pizzas weren’t enough carbs and fat, potato wedges, garlic pizza bread and Domino’s cookies were loaded into our set menu. Payment button pressed, we watched ‘Dom’ the Domino’s app, twirl its countdown wheel as our order was tracked through the system. We might be getting covidelirious as Matt declared Dom to be “the most awesome user interface ever! If the pizza is as good as their app I’ll never eat anything else!”
It didn’t seem long until the final piece of Dom’s pie ‘Out for delivery’ was illuminated. The meal arrived very quickly, even on this busy Bank Holiday evening, in the arms of a smartly uniformed and polite delivery lady who put the pizza down and retreated.
Large meal deal:
- 2 x large pizza
- 1 x garlic pizza bread
- 1 x potato wedges
- 1 x Domino’s cookies
As we started the unboxing, we were pleased to discover that our pizzas were hot, fresh, and ready to eat. Cat, who was hosting this evening’s dinner had her best (unironed) linen on the table and had added cutlery to the proceedings, but this went unused as we scooped up the warm slices with our bare eager fingers.
The chicken feast pizza gave a good simulation of a pizza. The mushroom and chicken toppings were present and correct but apart from the distinct sweetcorn, the rest had a homogenous flavour. Nonetheless the pizza had a pleasingly hand-wrought rusticity to its irregular edges.
The Mighty Meaty certainly had meat on it, in the form of a range of sausage slices and other assorted fragments. They looked different, sure, but if you’d blindfolded Matt and asked him to identify any of these meats by taste alone he’d have been challenged. We didn’t order Domino’s and expect a taste sensation, nor did we get one. Still, it has to be said that the pizzas were not as salty nor greasy as previous Domino’s incarnations we have eaten and the hand that dealt the toppings was far from parsimonious.
With its addition of tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese, the enjoyably stodgy garlic pizza bread side was in effect a mini pizza. The potato wedges needed a bit of lubrication; Matt poked his spuds into the accompanying carton of Domino’s sweet smoky barbecue sauce. Cat anointed her chips with crème fraîche and Garlic Farm onion marmalade from her own condiment stockpile. But hey, we were all about comfort food that night. Domino’s vinegary garlic and herb dip with its curious aftertaste went in the bin – we’re not falling for that stuff twice.
Pudding was the still-warm Domino’s cookies. Why is cooked cookie dough not a cookie? Honestly by now we don’t care. These looked pretty unappetising; but appearances can be deceptive. They were, it has to be said, spectacular. Soft gooey centres bursting with melted chocolate. Warm and indulgent.
We folded up the empty boxes – alas too contaminated with grease to go in our cardboard recycling. Cat filed the napkins in her washing machine, pending a trip around the rotary dryer tomorrow. Well done Domino’s for keeping us fed during the lockdown. The ordering and delivery process was remarkably smooth; food bland, but plentiful. Matt ate pizza leftovers for lunch and dinner the next day, and the birds on her balcony enjoyed Cat’s crusts. Our meal deal was reasonable value; with two large pizzas big enough to share, garlic bread pizza, wedges and pudding. A generic meal elevated by those delicious cookies.
This is the full-length version of the review first published in the Isle of Wight County Press.
- Reasonable value
- Straight forward online ordering
- Spectacular cookies
- Generic flavours