Where we were: Jioio’s Restaurant
Address: 939 Carbon Road, Greensburg, PA 15601
What we ordered: 3 Large Plain/Pep and Medium Plain/Pep
Price: $108 (including beers, pop) split 18 ways. Ha. ($6 a person then tip)
Review: Jioio’s was the first stop on the Greater Pittsburgh Pizza Cruise. The majority of us live around the city, so I decided that we needed to start at the furthest point and work our way back in. It was a rainy, cold and typical Pittsburgh afternoon. We all met at roughly 1pm. I was surprised to see everyone in their seats by 1:15pm!
When I told the waitress we had 18 people coming, she thought I was joking and I assured her I was not. We filled up the entire back part of the dining room and ordered up some beers while waiting for everyone to show up. As more and more people came in, the chatter became louder and louder with excitement. See, we were headed to 5 other places after this. A group full of pizza loving, gluttonous men set to spend an entire day drinking beer and eating pizza, what could be better? Only half of the group had been to a Jioio’s before, so I was curious to see what everyone thought. I passed out the rule sheets and official voting ballots. The pizza came out. This pizza cruise has officially started.
Let’s get to that breakdown. Remember for the next few entries the rankings for each category are reflected as that of the entire group.
Crust: 7/10 – Jioio’s crust is sweet, sugary sweet. Square cut, very thin, crispy and flaky. I personally like the crust; it gets to be a bit much after a few slices, though. This trip it was a little undercooked, making it not as crispy as I (we) usually have it.
Sauce: 7/10 –Not only is the crust sweet, but so is the sauce, thus being the reason some people can either do with or without this pizza. My max has always been 3 slices at Jioio’s. It’s like an “insert girly liquor drink here”. You can only have too much before you start to feel you may have crossed the line of too much sweetness.
Cheese: 7/10 –There is a very thin layer of cheese on Jioio’s, and it pairs so well with everything else going on in here. It’s like when you bite in there is so much flavor, the crust separates from the cheese and everything in your life for a split second kind of seems perfect. I felt this was cooked to perfection and gave it a 9/10, but the overall voted otherwise.
Toppings: 6/10 –I stuck with the pepperoni slices here, though their pepperoni never really blows my mind. You could do just cheese here and be content.
Presentation: 7/10 –I’m not sure how this didn’t get a better score here than a 7. This pizza looks picture perfect every time you see it. That, and factor in the customer service from our fantastic waitress, I went 9/10 here. Most people didn’t know at the start what to include with presentation, but overall a 7/10 is still a good score.
Bonus + 2 –I’m gonna go ahead here and do Jioio’s some justice and give them 2 extra points for their great accommodating service. This dining room is small, and the wait staff did an excellent job taking care of us. Eighteen guys, all that pizza and beer and we were out of there in under an hour.
Overall Grade: 36/50 –72%
My Personal Take: I grew up about 15 minutes from Jioio’s, but I didn’t really experience it until I was about 17 years old. There are three locations, Latrobe (original), Greensburg (everyone’s favorite) and the somewhat newer location in North Huntingdon. People will try and tell you that they all have a different taste and you need to go to the Greensburg one for the best, but I don’t really buy that. I’ve had the North Huntingdon one numerous times and really don’t see a difference at all.
What makes Jioio’s so unique is that it could probably be classified as a “dessert” pizza. It’s one of those places that if you’ve heard of it, but never had it; you need to at least try it. You’ll love it, hate it…or be slightly in the middle, like myself.
Disclaimer: If you think that my grading scale is harsh, remember that I grade each trip as its own experience. Have I had a perfect slice? Nah. I’d basically say that if something I review gets better than a 70%, I’d go again and more than likely tell you to go as well. I don’t even think my favorite pizza place would get a 100% and if it did, there would be no reason to do this blog other than my love for pizza. Remember, the quest for the perfect slice. That’s what I’m after.
Entries for the Pizza Cruise show a combined vote from all 18 participants, not just my own.