As we wrap up our pizza takeover on the D website, we can look back on months of research into Dallas’ best pizzas, most creative pies, glorious takeout, lessons learned from pizza masters, and even a trip to an unlikely culinary powerhouse nation. Now, there is only one thing left to do: try the single weirdest, most out-there pizza in Dallas.
When pizza chain Mister O1 first announced that it was arriving in Dallas from Miami, one line of the press release jumped out at me. Not the part about founder Renato Viola’s O-1 visa, given by the United States government for “extraordinary abilities.” Not the part about pizzas with star-shaped crusts. Not the bragging about Viola’s artistic cooking talent.
No, I got stuck on the menu at the coffee blue cheese honey salami pizza. I have thought about nothing else since, not even the weather or baseball.
At D Magazine we believe in service journalism, so I ordered two coffee blue cheese honey salami pizzas and brought them to the office for a taste test. Mister O1 calls this the “Coffee Paolo,” and the official menu description is as follows: “Italian tomato sauce, mozzarella, gorgonzola blue cheese, natural honey, coffee, Calabrian spicy salami.” A 13-inch pizza costs $18.
Below are comments from our brave taste-testers. After that, stick around for the ending, where we reveal exactly why Mister O1 has a coffee pizza. It’s a great story you won’t want to miss.
The judges’ verdicts
“No one would know it was coffee if you didn’t know before.”
“Is that really coffee? What do they do to the coffee grounds? Coffee grounds have a flake to them. These crunch.”
“The blue cheese comes across much more strongly than the coffee. And something is definitely spicy.”
“I get the sweetness from the honey, which is nice with the pepper and spice.”
“Kids would not eat this. This is the anti-kid pizza. This is the pizza you get if your kids are going to eat all the other pizza and you want one for yourself that they won’t eat.”
“It’s like kombucha. You don’t want to smell it before you eat it. But when you eat it, it’s good.”
“The crust holds up well. Good crust. I would order another pizza from them for sure.”
“I don’t like it. I feel like this will give me an upset stomach. But I have a weak stomach.”
“It has a kick at the end. You can’t really taste the coffee. It’s good!”
“It seems so damn random. It’s like a M.A.S.H. game for pizza.”
“For a free office lunch, I give it a solid A. It’s something. It’s definitely something.”
The backstory behind the coffee pizza
Via Mister O1, here is the incredible origin story:
“Mister O1’s chef-founder Renato Viola always sleeps with a pen and paper at his bedside to write down any special ideas that come to mind at any given moment. One night at 3:30 a.m. he woke from a dream in which he created a pizza with coffee sprinkled on it. Chef, being a major fan of espresso coffee himself, couldn’t wait to rush [to work] to start working on this creation—the Coffee Paolo.
“He played with different ingredients, cheeses, and amounts and landed on the final recipe by 7:30 a.m., and called his wife Manuela and business partner Umberto Mascagni to rush to the restaurant to try this new pizza.”
Yes: it was a dream pizza! I love it.
Mister O1 is located at 3838 Oak Lawn Ave., Ste. P175. A second North Texas location in Grapevine is set to open this spring at 129 S. Main St., Ste. 155, Grapevine.