Because I was still sick, I left my wife in charge with dinner. We ordered calzones.
My wife and I have been ordering from Sarpinos for what feels like a couple of years. We drive past their Diversey location whenever we need to get to the highway, and I think we started using them because they’re on delivery.com. Due to my general disdain for talking to people on the phone, I like to order online whenever I can. Plus, when you have to convey information with particularity, the telephone seems inevitably prone to error, just as in the children’s game of the same name.
If you asked me yesterday, I would have told you that Sarpinos is a Chicago, or possibly a Midwest, minichain of pizza places. Having done some research, I discovered that Sarpino’s started in Canada and opened its first American location in Arizona. I may stop ordering from there on those two facts alone.
My wife always orders cheese sticks or cheesy bread whenever there is pizza or a pizza-like product involved. I don’t know why she does this. But I never say anything because I know it’s something she likes.
The cheese sticks at Saripnos are terrible. I usually don’t eat any of them. They come with a ranch dipping sauce that I’m fairly certain is just miracle whip. My wife doesn’t usually eat many of the cheese sticks either. I think she saves them for lunch the next day.
The calzones at Sarpino’s have changed over time. They used to come in a styrofoam clamshell container and were so big I couldn’t finish them in a single sitting. The crusts around the calzone were a tad on the thin side and tasted almost home made.
These days, the calzones are a little bit smaller and look more professionally done. The dough is neatly wrapped around the calzone fillings, and it’s thicker. But it’s all done in too uniform a manner, which makes them feel more like really big hot pockets that came from a factory. The OCD in me does appreciate, however, that they now come in a box that is of the same length and width as the cheese sticks box: makes for neater stacking.
You can get any of 12 different kinds of calzones at Sarpino’s, a number which generally indicates that you should not bother with any of them. That being said, I like the calzones at Sarpino’s. Typically, when we order from there, it’s either because I’m sick or the weather is miserable outside. And even though the calzones do seem to have shrunk over time, they’re still really filling. Sarpino’s is about quantity, not quality, and sometimes, that’s precisely what you’re looking for.
My wife always gets the ham and cheese. I usually get the sausage and peppers, but only because I always forget that I don’t like their sausage. It always reminds me of the time when the fanciest thing I knew how to cook was spaghetti with chopped up hot dogs, which really was not that long ago.
On this particular evening, I got the meatball calzone. The meatballs are similar to the kind of mushy, airy meatballs you find at cheap italian restaurants. They were bland and meaty at the same time, but they hit the spot.