Just when you're beginning to think that pizza is all the same, no matter where you go... think again. When you want to escape the "pizza norm" and you long for a new pizza sensation, check out Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist, located in the Arbor View shopping center in west Roseville. Have you ever longed to try pizza, Indian style?
As with all restaurant reviews I publish, I have no affiliation with the restaurant reviewed, and there is no monetary gain on my part, as I am simply a person who likes to eat, and I love to write-up, and publish my dining experiences.
Photo: It's a little after the 11:00 in the morning opening time, December 28, 2021, and I've arrived at Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist to take a trip to "Bollywood" without leaving Roseville. How many other restaurants in northern California feature pizza, with an Indian flavor?
Photo: The dining room, if you want to call it as such, is very plain, spartan, and is simply functional. As you enter the restaurant, you'll be greeted with an order counter, two video monitors with the menu, a soft drink cooler, and a couple of empty display cases. Three long tables, with chairs, line the front of the restaurant, are the only furniture in the restaurant that cater to the customer. It's plain to see that in-house dining is simply an afterthought, as to-go dining seems to be the emphasis for food service.
As you enter the restaurant, you're greeted by a friendly counter guy, who doubles as a sous chef in the kitchen. You make your selection from the video menu posted above the order counter, pay for your order and when it's ready, the counter guy will hand it to you with a smile.
During the time of today's visit, I was the only dine-in customer, but the order guy was very busy taking phone orders, and there was a steady stream of customers arriving to pick up to-go orders. I noted that many customers ordered online from the restaurant's web site.
When I walked in, I noticed quite a change in the dining room from my visit of nearly six years ago, as the pizza buffet and salad bar are completely gone, along with most of the seating, and now the restaurant is mostly a take-out operation. I'm glad I came for the food, and not for the decor!
The Roseville Foothill Blvd. location of Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist is actually one of five locations in he greater Sacramento area, and is actually a member of a national chain of restaurants, as noted on their web site.
Photo: The menu is posted above the order counter using two video monitors. The monitors are clear, easy to read, and the menu is very intuitive, and well laid out. The restaurant doesn't offer any printed menus, as their complete menu is posted on their website, which is listed at the end of this article. Roll your mouse across the photo for the complete menu.
Photo: I ordered a "Lamb Naan Pizza" along with two "Oven Baked Samosas" and my order arrived very quickly, in about 20 minutes after I placed it. I wish I could remember the name of this fine gentleman who waited on me, as he was very friendly and treated me like a member of his family.
Nothing fancy about the presentation, as my order arrived in a "to-go" box!
Photo: I smile as I pose with my lunch, along with a paper plate and a small container of "Mango Habanero" dipping sauce. Since I was a "dine-in" customer, I was provided a paper plate, but no utensils. No worries as every selection on the menu is "finger food."
You can get a good idea of the plain decor of the dining room, and the spartan furniture that lines the window, at the front of the restaurant, which is the only customer seating offered
Photo: I'm a happy guy, as I'm about to enjoy a lunch of pizza and samosas, that will transport me to the streets of India, via my taste buds. Enjoying an amazing lunch at Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist is as close to India as I'll ever get.
Photo: I opened the box and I was greeted with my "Lamb Naan Pizza" and my order of two "Oven Baked Samosas." Since Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist is primarily a to-go restaurant, all orders arrive from the kitchen in a pizza box. Since I was dining "in," my host cheerfully provided me a paper plate. Dining isn't fancy, but the taste is sublime!
Photo: From the "Naan Pizzas" section of the menu, I went with a "twist," and today's "twist" took a delicious turn, as I ordered the "Lamb Naan Pizza," with two "Oven Baked Samosas" on the side. Not only is the pizza oval-shaped, but it's cut into thin slices, for an exotic presentation.
The menu describes the pizza as, "Tandoori sauce, fresh, diced Mozzarella cheese, sliced lamb, spicy jalapenos, and crisp red onions. On request, we can add garlic, ginger and green chilies." Yes, please, as I ordered my pizza with everything! You get to choose between four spice levels: None, medium, spicy or extra spicy, and since today was a chilly, winter day, I chose the "spicy" level to keep me warm.
My "Lamb Naan Pizza" was simply out-of-this-continent amazing! Like every building with a solid foundation, a solid pizza begins with a great crust, and this pizza crust was both delicious, and unlike any pizza crust that I've every enjoyed! Rather than round, it was oval shaped, and made mostly from in-house-made naan dough, baked to a crunchy golden brown. The crust was firm, crunchy, and slightly on the sweet side, and held together well, for a great foundation of this delicious pizza.
There wasn't any red sauce on this pizza, as the sauce the menu describes as "Tandoori sauce" was actually a flavored yogurt, similar to sauce used to baste chicken as it's baked in a tandoori oven. Wow! Lots of creamy, melted Mozzarella cheese covered the sauce, and chunks of marinated lamb, diced jalapeno peppers, diced red onion, garlic and diced fresh ginger topped the pizza. Chopped cilantro completed the beautiful presentation and added a zesty touch to this amazing pizza.
Forget your pepperoni, Italian sausage, ham or any traditional meat, and say "Namaste" to savory, juicy bits of lamb, spiced just right, and grilled to perfection. The chunks of lamb made for a simply amazing meat topping for my "Lamb Naan Pizza." I'm truly a believer.
I ordered my pizza "spicy" and it was definitely on the spicy side, but not "too spicy" and the amount of spice added the perfect "jazz" to the pizza, and kept me warm on the way home. If you're sensitive to spicy food, you should consider ordering your spice level as "medium" rather than my choice of "spicy." I noted a hint of curry in the pizza, which certainly added to the "Indian ambiance."
This isn't your run-of-the-mill, "traditional" pizzas like you find in every supermarket, big-box store lunch counter, and chain pizzeria. "Lamb Naan Pizza" isn't your "traditional" pizza, as this is authentic Indian pizza, just like the pizza that's served on the streets of Bangalore. With every bite into this amazing pizza, your mouth simply explodes with the rich, savory tastes of India! This pizza isn't like any other pizza served in Roseville, as it's a savory blend of all things India, and all things pizza.
Photo: I'm holding a slice of my pizza, and you'll get an idea of what makes this pizza delicious. Yes, it looks delicious, but the photo doesn't do the sensational taste the justice it deserves. I simply fell in love with the tandori sauce, and the gooey, melted cheese. Simply delicious pizza!
Photo: From the "Sides" section of the menu, I went with two "Oven Baked Samosas" as my side dish. The samosas come with a choice of several dressings for dipping, and I chose "Mango Habanero" which seemed like a good choice to compliment my samosas, and my pizza.
Each samosa was deep fried to a golden brown, with crispy, flaky crust, and stuffed with potato, peas and Indian spices. Delicious! I broke off small pieces and dipped it into the dressing, and despite the name "habanero," I didn't find the dipping sauce over spicy, as I found it simply delicious! The sauce was on the smoky-sweet side, and simply complimented the samosa. "Mango Habanero" sauce works great with the samosa and the pizza.
When you're in the mood for an amazing pizza with a "twist," pizza like you've never enjoyed before, and you want to take a trip to "Bollywood" without leaving Roseville, head over to Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist for some of the most delicious and unique pizza on the planet! Chicago meets Bangalore in Roseville, at Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist, the Placer County home of amazing Indian-style pizza!
Back on Monday morning, January 04, 2016, I paid a visit to Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist, just days after the store opened...
In the city of Roseville, I'm beginning to thing the city fathers should rename the mile-long stretch of Foothills Blvd., between Pleasant Grove Blvd., and Vineyard Rd., as "Pizza Blvd.," as there are no less than eleven pizza restaurants in this 1-1/4 mile stretch! Show me another city that has such a high concentration of pizza restaurants... The new kid on the street is Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist, and holy Chicago, what a twist they have...
Photo: Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist is the newest pizza restaurant along Foothills Blvd. in Roseville, which I feel should be renamed to "Pizza Blvd." as there are no less than eleven pizza restaurants along a 1-1/4 mile stretch. When I heard about Chicago's Pizza coming to town, I wasn't particularly excited, as there are many pizza restaurants in Roseville. The "With-A-Twist" part of their brand got me thinking, and when I went by restaurant a couple of days before it opened, and I saw the banner that in part read, "Home of the Authentic Indian Pizza," I knew I would be visiting this restaurant for following Monday, to take part in their all-you-can-eat lunch specials. Monday morning, January 04, 2016 finds me at Chicago's Pizza, shortly after the 11 o'clock opening. The Roseville location is the newest link in the small chain of four restaurants - at the time of this writing - all located in the greater Sacramento area.
Photo: View of the ordering counter and salad bar, as you walk into the restaurant. The dining room is quite small, but it's clean and comfortable, featuring a mix of tables and booths. As soon as I walked in the door, a gentleman came from behind the curtain - which leads to the kitchen - to take my order. Like most pizza restaurants, you make your selection, pay for it at the counter, and unless you're enjoying the lunch buffet, your order will be brought to your table. Note the pizza pans, ranging in size from personal to extra-extra large, which is just plain HUGE. As the restaurant had just opened, I was the first customer of the day, and the only customer in the dining room, which is the way I like it, as it's easier to chat with the staff and to take photos, without annoying other customers.
Photo: The menu is posted on the wall, above the salad bar, and the restaurant also has small hand-out menus. Chicago's Pizza offers all pizza services, including dine-in, take-out, delivery, take-and-bake, and catering to any event. In addition to Indian-style pizza, they offer more conventional varieties, including one of the best combination pizzas that I've enjoyed in a long time. If you're a vegetarian, you've come to the right place, as the menu offers a wide array of vegetarian options.
Photo: Meet Mr. Manmeet Singh, who was my pleasant host and cashier, and who was more than happy to answer all my numerous questions about the restaurant, Indian-style pizza, and pizza in India, in general. Since before Chicago's Pizza came to town, I had never heard of, or much less imagined "authentic Indian pizza," so I asked him if pizza was common in India. He mentioned that pizza in India is becoming common in the larger cities, such as Mumbai, New Delhi or Bangalore. Of course, pizza in India has curry, which brings out the "Indian" in the pizza.
It was interesting to note after taking my order that Manmeet disappeared into the kitchen, and closed the curtain behind him. No worries, as I had the salad buffet and the endless refills of Coca Cola to keep me occupied.
Photo: Chicago's Pizza has a modest, but well-equipped salad bar, that's an lunch special, which means it's all-you-can-eat, which is a bargain itself, considering the quality of the fresh ingredients. The salad bar features lettuce, spinach, cucumber, broccoli, tomatoes, jalapeno pepper slices, shredded carrot, pepperoni, garbanzo beans, mushroom, chicken, chick peas, sliced olives and two varieties of cheese. Six different varieties of salad dressing are to the right of the salad bar, but are not shown in the photo. Manmeet assured me the ingredients are in-house-made and fresh, and indeed they are. The salad bar was simply delicious.
Photo: I was the first customer in the restaurant on this Monday morning, and they were just preparing pizza for the lunch special buffet, so while I was waiting, I made a couple of trips to the salad bar, in order to enjoy their fresh, wonderful salad. Isn't this a beautiful salad? The ingredients are fresh and delicious, and this salad tasted even better than it looks in the photo.
Photo: As I was waiting for the pizza to arrive, I peeked through a side door and got a look inside the kitchen.
Photo: Manmeet and his buddy, who I dubbed as "Mr. Cincinnati Bengals" - due to his stocking cap that resembles the colors of the N.F.L. team - were very friendly, but camera-shy. As not to be annoying, I didn't push to take their photos... They're bringing out the "Chicken Curry Pizza" for the all-you-can-eat lunch buffet.
Photo: During the all-you-can-eat lunch buffet, pizzas are placed next to the salad bar in this warming rack to keep them warm. The top pizza is the "Chicken Curry" variety, and the pizza on the middle rack is a "Combination." They were in the process of baking a "Hawaiian" pizza, but before it was ready, I had indulged myself in five slices of pizza and two trips to the salad bar, and I was full!
Photo: I pose with a salad, Coke, and two pieces of "Chicken Curry Pizza." Since Chicago's Pizza opened just last week, they have not received their beer and wine license, so as of this writing, they can only offer soft drinks. I quizzed Manmeet if beer was on the horizon, and he enthusiastically replied they plan to serve beer, including domestic brands, along with beer imported from India. Sounds good to me!
Photo: The food is not only fresh, unique and delicious, it's the bargain of the century! Monday through Friday, from 11 in the morning until 2 in the afternoon, for the price of $5.99, you're treated to the "Lunch Buffet." For that price, you get all-you-can-eat pizza and salad. All you can eat for $5.99!!! Add a small, all-you-can-drink Coke product for an additional $.89, and you can even take a refill for the road! By the time tax was factored in, my lunch cost me exactly $7.40, which is about the price of a lunch at a fast food restaurant. Every pizza restaurant in town better be on the lookout when word gets around about this bargain-basement lunch at Chicago's Pizza.
Photo: Chicago meets Bollywood at Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist, as I enjoy a two slices of "Chicken Curry Pizza," and a third slice as I was waiting for the "Combination" pizza to arrive. "Chicken Curry Pizza" includes curry sauce, curry chicken, Mozzarella cheese, mushrooms, black olives, red onion, garlic, ginger, fresh cilantro and green chilies. Jalapeno peppers are available upon request, but I didn't see the need, as they're available at the salad bar if I wanted to add them to my pizza.
This pizza is freshly made, hot from the oven, and amazing delicious, as it's made from the freshest of ingredients. If you love curry, this is your pizza, as it definitely has both curry spice, and curry chicken, which, along with all of the other wonderful ingredients, make this a unique and delicious pizza. Not to mention, you can eat your fill! This is the lunch deal of the century!
As I previously mentioned, until a week or so ago, I had never heard of "authentic Indian pizza," and I didn't even know pizza existed in India. Now I know, and my world is a much better place, thanks to today's dining experience at Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist.
Photo: After I'd enjoyed three pieces of "Chicken Curry Pizza," a pie of the "Combination" variety was placed in the pizza warmer; naturally, I had to grab a couple of slices. The "Combination" pizza is very conventional, as it includes cheese, pepperoni, salami, beef, Canadian bacon, Italian sausage, mushrooms, black olives, green peppers and onions. Like the "Chicken Curry Pizza," the "Combination" is fresh and delicious.
Prior to my visit to Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist, I had never heard of, nor even imagined Indian-style pizza. Yes, pizza does exist in India, and "authentic Indian pizza" is alive and well, and amazingly-delicious at Chicago's Pizza, in West Roseville.
Chicago's Pizza With-A-Twist
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