First bites: Z Pizza a welcome addition to Redlands’ pizza scene

Nestled between Cold Stone Creamery and Verizon Wireless in Redlands’ Citrus Plaza, Z Pizza opened last week in the spot formerly occupied by Blimpie.

Nothing against Blimpie, but I think we got a better deal with Z Pizza.

Z Pizza’s shtick is that they offer a healthier pizza, with organic wheat dough and tomato sauce.

I’ll have to admit, I’m not generally a thin-crust pizza kind of guy, but I liked what I tried at Z Pizza.

The occasion for visiting Z Pizza was to get free pizza and to see (and hear) Allan Borgen’s Let’s Dine Out Show live broadcast.

First I tried a slice of the Mexican pizza. It consists of a salsa base, with mozzarella, spicy lime chicken, green and red onions, fresh avocado, cilantro and a drizzle of sour cream.

It had a hint of heat, with the lime flavor from the chicken dominating alternating bites. The addition of the sour cream also was a nice touch. Delicious!

The dough has almost a sourdough flavor to me, which was very appealing.

I’d definitely order this again.

My second slice was plain ol’ pepperoni, which was good, and the pepperoni plentiful, but it didn’t match the deliciousness of the Mexican pizza.

I did like that they took a light touch on the sauce.

Z Pizza is not the cheapest place around, with their small pizzas starting at $8.50 (for pepperoni) and topping out (get it?) at $22.20 for either an extra large Provence pizza with chicken sausage or California pizza with grilled chicken breast.

They do have a limited-time lunch special, though, two slices of pizza with a soda for $6.50. That’s a good way to sample their pizzas for a reasonable price.

They also have two pastas (penne with meatballs and chicken penne pesto), a variety of sandwiches and a smattering of salads.

The most intriguing thing a friend and I found on the menu, however, were their Rustica pizzas. Oval in shape, they offered slightly more exotic choices, such as pear and gorgonzola, or chicken curry and yam. We vowed to return to try these varieties, which are normally $8.95 each, but are on special at two for $15.

Another plus in Z Pizza’s favor is that they offer several options for those who have restrictive diets. They have a Yuppie Veggie sandwich and a Berkeley soy cheese veggie pizza, for example. They also have gluten-free crust available at participating locations, Redlands included.

The Redlands restaurant can be found at 27512 Lugonia Ave., Suite C.

They’ve got two other Inland Empire locations in Chino Hills at 3090 Chino Ave., Unit B and in the Colonies Crossroads in Upland at 1943-C North Campus Ave.

So, the next time you’re over at Target and are feeling a bit peckish, give Z Pizza a try. Tell ’em Dine 909 sent ya. Just don’t expect anything more than a blank look in return.

  • Laura

    We got pizza from here on Super Bowl Sunday. We got an extra large pizza with ham, pepperoni, italian sausage and extra cheese. It was almost $28. While the pizza was large, we were disappointed. We were hoping for something more like Red Brick pizza and found them lacking. The toppings were sparse. Average of 1 piece of pepperoni, 2 sausage nuggets and several had no ham at all because there were only 4 2″x3″ slices on the whole pizza. The sauce was almost non-exisistant. The pepperoni had a bite and the sausage was tasty, but after two bites, it was mozzerella on bread. Frankly, bland was our general comment. The special that day was that you also got a free pizza rustica with any extra large pizza purchase. While this was a little bit tastier, it was supposed to be red sauce, chicken sausage and cheese. Well, the sauce was tastier (was it different that the sauce on the big pizza?) and the sausage was tasty, but there was virtually no cheese on it. We got it home, and it look like sausage on sauce and tasted like it too. Frankly, for the price and the taste, we won’t be back. We felt over charged for a bland, toppingless pizza.

  • John Plessel

    Laura:

    I warned you they weren’t the cheapest place in town…

    It sounds like they went from one extreme to the other with your order. From a pizza that was had a lot of cheese and hardly any sauce to one (the rustica) with lots of sauce and hardly any cheese. If only they could find a way to balance everything out.

    I’m kind of surprised about the lack of toppings. The slices I had (and the pizzas I saw coming out of the oven) definitely weren’t lacking in the topping department. Could it be that they were trying to impress Allan Borgen? Hmmm…

    The lack of sauce, however is less surprising. I think that’s their standard. As you might have read, I am more of a light-sauce person, so that was a good thing. I’d still like to go back and try their rustica pizzas…let’s hope they throw some cheese on mine!

    You also mentioned Red Brick. I’ve found that their quality varies widely. Sometimes they’re good…other times they’re awful. The last couple of times I’ve been there, it’s been awful.

    In Redlands, I don’t think you can do any better than the Gourmet Pizza Shoppe over on State Street, which I’ve also written about. If you haven’t tried them, you should. They’re super friendly and they have some rather bizarre pizza combinations, some of which are surprisingly delicious.

    Thanks for letting us all know about your Z Pizza experience, and thanks for reading Dine 909.

    JohnP