It’s long been an unwritten rule that pizza for breakfast ought to be relegated a post-party situation.
For example: You passed out drunk, woke up hungry, and that pizza from last night’s throwdown, now cold and congealed, will taste better than anything you could imagine.
Otherwise, eating a goopy, cheesy, saucy pie in the morning can induce deep guilt. That guilt is related to the strange feeling you get when you're crushing breakfast for dinner and seem compelled announce it like it’s a special occasion: “Hey guys, I’m having breakfast …for dinner.”
To quote my dead grandfather, “Whoop dee do!”
That said, I got excited when I noticed the current trend of breakfast pizzas.
First, there was a really good looking one in A.J.'s, in the deli along with other morning-designated eats. The pie wasn't even a special. They have it every single day.
Breakfast pizza started surfacing on menus, too. It seemed like this milestone was the true gateway to making pizza an okay thing to eat not long after sunrise. And not just after partying, but any time — and without a single ounce of guilt or judgment.
I figured it was probably time to try some of these breakfast pies being served around town. And I was willing to kiss some frogs to find a great one. Kind of like how you sometimes have to date a lot of assholes before you find a good match? Yep, I was willing to encounter a few asshole breakfast pizzas.
As I drove around pondering the perfect spot for my breakfast pizza devirginization, I spotted the Quik Trip (QT) billboard like a sign from the pizza gods: "Breakfast Riding Shotgun." Of course I made fun of their hokey ad, but without a second thought, I began to redirect the steering wheel.
What I had seen was an ad for QT's breakfast pizza.
Walking into QT to get hot food is like walking into the porn shop to get something that may or may not be for your friend's bachelorette party. You hope nobody sees you. And that if somebody does they don't make a big deal out of it.
QT has hot dogs and rolled tacos that you can grab and go. A stealthy exit, however, is not an option when it comes to breakfast pizza. A call was made to the pizza counter so that someone could appear and assemble my eggy pie. Yep — the whole store was on to me.
Due to a high counter, I couldn’t witness the process. But I did see the QT pizzamaker scoop my a.m. pie onto a metal plate and pop it into an oven. I thought it would be Easy-Bake-Oven-style and come out in a few seconds. Nope. The clock kept ticking and ticking.
At last, a timer went off. A breakfast pizza was packaged and handed to me.
My ultimate hope was that the pizza would be so delectable that I’d rejoice, telling all my friends how they won’t believe how good the QT food is.
There are times in life when not swallowing is the only option. Like, you know, at the dentist. And when you've got a mouthful of the unfortunate mishmash that is the QT breakfast pizza. My hopes for falling in love with this greasy grab-and-go item were dashed just one bite in. The crust wasn’t terrible, but it was disturbing that it had baked for so long without getting remotely crisp.
The sauce on the pie was a thick, white, country-style gravy, clearly meant to go with the sausage topper for a country breakfast vibe. Pasty, watered-down, and tasteless, it was the Donald Trump of gravies.
The eggs were scrambled, surrounded by chunks of mediocre sausage. The other pork product, however, was an oink of a disappointment. Flabby, soft bacon sliced into small pieces didn't help the already-soft texture of the rest of the pizza.
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And, oh yes, there was cheese.
The cheddar cut the blandness some, but also made the experience terrifying. I couldn't unsee the spectacle of the melted cheese mingling with the grease from all the many meats. It gave me a heartache just watching, and not the good kind.
QT breakfast pizza, thanks for being my first
I certainly won't forget you, but I just don't think we have a future together.