Arts & Entertainment

Restaurant Spotlight: Pine’s Pizza, Pasta & Subs

spotlightI had heard rumors about the quality of Pine’s Pizza for awhile from an associate of mine. He claimed that the pizza was incredible due to a combination of “some kind of spicy tomato sauce” and fresh ingredients. However, he also claimed that he had not been in a long time and that things had changed at Pine’s, but not for the better. Being the greatest investigative reporter in Northern Virginia, I had to investigate and see if any rumors about how good the pizza is are true. Tragically, they are not.

spotlight

Pine’s Pizza (Photo: News-Press)

 

I had heard rumors about the quality of Pine’s Pizza for awhile from an associate of mine. He claimed that the pizza was incredible due to a combination of “some kind of spicy tomato sauce” and fresh ingredients. However, he also claimed that he had not been in a long time and that things had changed at Pine’s, but not for the better. Being the greatest investigative reporter in Northern Virginia, I had to investigate and see if any rumors about how good the pizza is are true. Tragically, they are not.

The interior of Pine’s was dimly lit and staffed only by the guy behind the counter, who was also the only person in the building other than myself. After ordering, he went back to the kitchen and got to work. While I respect people who can multitask, it still felt odd that he and I were the only people in the place. After a few minutes of waiting around for my large order, I got to work, if ruining my health with high doses of cholesterol can be considered work.

The crust of my pepperoni pizza was thin and crispy, which I prefer over some places that just slap some cheese and sauce on a piece of Wonder Bread to create a doughy monstrosity. However, when I order a pepperoni pizza, I expect more than four or five slices of pepperoni on it, even if they’re the large “artisan” pepperonis that fancy pizza places use. The pizza was basically a cheese pizza that accidentally came into contact with some pepperoni slices that happened to be in the kitchen. Despite the quality crust, the overall pizza had too many similarities to something you could get in the frozen food section of any grocery store.

The chicken club sandwich wasn’t bad, although the addition of American cheese sort of threw me off. I suppose I should’ve asked what kind of cheese they were going to put in it, as the menu only listed “cheese”, but I live for surprises. It was a greasy (but not too greasy) delight that could have only been improved by substituting the American cheese with pepper jack. Maybe next time.

My quest for the perfect buffalo wing continues, but these were some pretty decent and reasonably-priced wings. However, when a spiceaholic (one who is addicted to spiceahol) such as myself asks for spicy wings, I expect as much. These “spicy” wings were nothing of the sort, which makes me wonder how mild their wings usually are. Furthermore, half of the wings were huge and meaty (awesome) while the other half were laughably small. This unevenness in wing size was a physical and emotional roller-coaster, but I suppose I could have just had a weirdly-sized batch.

The onion rings were a welcome surprise. I usually like them piping hot and crispier than a drought-stricken desert that’s been put into a giant flash-fryer. These rings were soft and not terribly crispy, but were still pretty good, albeit different than usual. But breaking out of one’s comfort zone in order to eat is a necessary practice that should be more common than it is.

While Pine’s Pizza may have been the greatest cheap local pizza joint in the past, something must have happened in recent years. They may have a long way to regain their former glory, but with a lot of elbow grease and some fresher ingredients, it doesn’t seem impossible. All they need to do is do whatever it is that made them good enough for me to hear about.

Pine’s Pizza

5645 Lee Hwy., Falls Church

703-538-4001

pinespizza.net

Hours:

Monday – Thursday, 10:30 a.m. – 10 p.m.

Friday – Saturday, 10:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Sunday 11:30 a.m. – 10 p.m.