Pizza on Wheels

The recent re-opening of Wy’east Pizza made me do some thinking about the marvels of Food Cart Pizza. There are huge advantages to pizza on wheels–it’s cheap, it’s fast, and perhaps most importantly, you don’t have to wait in line for 45-90 minutes to get a seat when you’re struck with a craving. Here are my favorite places to get pizza on the go.

WY’EAST PIZZA

wyeastpeppIt’s easy to whiz right by this unassuming but gaily decorated little 1974 camper trailer-turned-pizza cart on your way down SE 50th to SE Powell or Division. You should stop, though, because Wy’east’s luscious thin-crusted pies are delicious, and you should stop early, because when the day’s dough is gone, it’s gone, and it’s often gone sooner rather than later. Relish the simple flavors of a basil-strewn Margherita ($12) or indulge in seasonal pies like the Three-Fingered Jack–onion, garlic and Anaheim peppers ($14), Hot Marmot–pepperoni and sweet and hot peppers ($15), or Crater Potater–potato, garlic, rosemary, and spicy oil, all hand-tossed, adorned and baked by passionate pizzamakers/cute couple “Squish and Red.” Walk, ride the bus, or pedal your bike to Wy’east and get a dollar off your pie for your environmental good deed. One tip–call ahead, because it can take up to an hour for your pie to queue up during the dinner rush.

3131 SE 50th Ave. * 503.701.5149 * 4:30 – 9:30 pm Tues-Sat * wyeastpizza.com

PYRO PIZZA

pyromargPyro’s pizzas and calzones are cooked in a honest-to-goodness wood-fired oven right inside the cart, the crust is thin, chewy and blistery, the the toppings are fresh and tasty, the beet sugar-sweetened sodas and the mozzarella are homemade, the people are nice. You don’t have to wait forever to get a seat, because there aren’t any seats. There’s a scant wait of 10 or so minutes for your caramelized onion, marinated tomato, pepperoni, or cuattro formaggi pizza, all of which are quite affordably priced between $6 and $8 and can be veganized for $1 extra. And it so happens that 10 minutes tends to be just enough time to walk across SE Hawthorne’s popular “Cartopia” cart cluster and put in an order for a peanut butter chocolate chip fried pie at Whiffies Fried Pies. Take both your pies home, pop open a bottle of cava/beer/YooHoo, put your feet up, and be watching Tivo’d episodes of The Soup in the same amount of time it usually takes you to wrestle your way from Apizza’s front door to the waiting list.

SE 12th & Hawthorne * 503-929-1404 * Wed-Thu 6pm-12am, Fri-Sat 6pm-3am  *www.pyropizzacart.com

GIVE PIZZA A CHANCE

givepizzaachanceThis downtown favorite (and Pyro Pizza’s sister cart) has a line down the block come lunchtime, and with good reason. The organic whole wheat pizza crust is thick, chewy, crisp on the bottom, and so good and hot you’ll scarf your way through the entire piece and down to a nubbin of crust in no time. The cheese is soft, thick and bubbly, the sauce is fresh and flavorful, and the ingredients are organic and locally-sourced. Try the Mom’s Favorite with caramelized onions and blue cheese, the Meataholic, or the I Give In–good old ham and pineapple with red sauce, or, make your own from the long list of potential topping candidates. Pies can be ordered whole and Chicago deep dish-style (call ahead), and by the slice–and for $6 you can get a lunch deal that includes a slice of your choice, a Greek salad and a homemade beet sugar-sweetened soda–yet another reason to wait patiently in line come noon.

SE Stark & SW 4th * 503.333.4434 * Mon-Fri 11am-4pm * givepizzaachance.com