Monday, October 21, 2013

mama mimi's, mmm...

Hello, gluten free world!

There's a new pizza place in town, and it is totally worth tracking down!  Mama Mimi's -- a pizza chain that started in Columbus in 2000 -- has moved into Cincinnati.  The Anderson location is now open, and locations in Kenwood & Oakley are opening soon.
I met with Brett, who gave me a brief history and answered lots of questions for me.  Their gluten-free crust is made in a dedicated gluten-free facility, while their white and honey wheat crusts are made in-house.  The gluten-free comes prepackaged, is a medium 12" crust, and has a $4 upcharge.
So, what makes them different?  This pizza is take-and-bake, and the toppings are fresh & high quality.  There are no tables for dining, but there are benches, a variety of wine & beer, and a fun photo display.
Just what is take-and-bake?  It's growing in popularity, because it allows families and groups of friends to bake the pizza on their own, which imparts a special texture & flavor that aren't as apparent in a pizza delivered to your door.  You will have to pop it into a preheated oven, but it cooks to perfection in about 8 minutes.

The menu is pretty big, but the pink GF symbol makes the gluten-free options really easy to read.
And Brett clarified: this symbol indicates which are gluten-free with no modifications, beyond the crust.  Many other items are easily made gluten-free with simple adjustments, like leaving Gorgonzola off the award-winning Mama's Marmelletta Amore pizza.  They really take great care to avoid cross-contamination with gluten. And since the pizzas aren't cooked on-site, there aren't cutting & serving tools to worry about getting glutened.

I asked the staff for suggestions and tried a half-and-half pizza:
  • Parma Pesto Chicken - pesto, mozzarella, chicken, black olive, tomato, artichoke heart, & Parmesan (hold the onion for me)
  • Primo Vegetarian - red sauce, mozzarella, spinach, tomato, broccoli, artichoke heart, Parmesan, & roasted garlic (hold the mushroom & onion for me)
It was delicious.  From my boyfriend's mom, who isn't gluten intolerant and knows how much I love a good pizza: "Seriously, the best GF pizza I have tasted!"  The taste, texture, & variety of toppings make up for that $4 charge.  It's the tastiest gluten-free crust I've had.  Drool-worthy.

It's quickly made to order and shrink-wrapped right in front of you.  Then a sticker with simple to follow instructions is slapped on, and you're ready to go.  And they have online ordering, so you don't even have to wait!
Bonus: they have a loyalty club called Mama's Family that you can join in-store or at their website.  After the purchase of 10 pizzas, the 11th is free!  
Let Mama Mimi's bring your family and friends back to the table sometime soon, and let me know what you think!  

Full disclosure:
Views and opinions expressed above are mine & mine alone.  Beyond receiving a pizza to sample, I was in no way compensated for this review.

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