Walt Disney World has announced that they will be opening a new pizzeria at the Italy pavilion in Epcot later this year. Operated by the Patina Group, the new pizzeria will seat 300 in a restaurant with “Florentine architecture”.
In fairness, let me say that I think the Patina group generally does a good job and I think the pizza outlet they’ll open will offer the best pizza on property. That being said, the bar is pretty low right now for offering ‘the best pizza on property’.
While I welcome any attempt by Disney to introduce ‘good pizza’, I have to wonder why Disney has remained so tone-deaf to the constant criticisms of pizza elsewhere around Walt Disney World.
It is almost universally accepted that Disney pizza is among the worst anywhere. Especially among those of us from areas of the country famous for their pizza (specifically New York, New Jersey and Chicago), a slice of pizza at WDW is akin to eating cardboard covered in ketchup. The most egregious of which, in my opinion, is Pizza Planet at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Honestly – they should partner with Prevacid to offer medication with each slice served – it is the worst pizza I’ve ever tasted, and currently our Ratings and Reviews section backs that up – Pizza Planet scores a rating of 5 out of a possible 10 with most commenting that the pizza just plain stinks.
So, I’d like to offer a word of advice to the folks at Patina as they embark on this sacred quest: If anyone from Disney tries to tell you how to make the pizza, or how the pizza should taste, or what kind of sauce to use…force them to eat their own pizza first then tell them to shut up.
So, kudos to the Patina Group for (hopefully) filling a real need in the scope of Disney’s fast food offerings, but let’s hope that Disney revisits the rest of the pizza on property with an eye towards substantial improvement.
UPDATE 1/30 – I swear I didn’t see this article prior to writing this blog entry! Disney would do well to consider Domino’s approach to ‘bad pizza’ – click here to read the story in Time Magazine.