Ordering a Pizza at the Standard Market Grill in Lincoln Park

On Friday, 21 November 2014 at 5:05 p.m., I ordered a cheese pizza at the Lincoln Park location of the Standard Market Grill. The clerk who took my order is named Nicolette. This pizza was “to-go.”

When I arrived home, I opened the cardboard box in which the pizza was contained and discovered to my horror that there was not a single fleck of red on the entire pizza. I looked more closely at the pizza. No, there was not a single lineament of tomato puree on the gobbets of cheese that bedecked the pizza disc. Nor was there any tomato puree on the bready background. I called the restaurant at 5:27 p.m.; Nicolette answered the telephone. I explained to her that tomato purée was absent from the pizza that I ordered, and Nicolette insisted that there was tomato sauce on the pizza, “even if there wasn’t enough for [my] liking.” I insisted, in turn, that there was no tomato sauce on the pizza.

I extracted the web of cheese from the pizza disc. Not a single trace of tomato puree was uncovered. There was no red on the underside of the cheese web, either. I ate a slice — which was all that I could stand, since the pizza was flavorless — and, no, I did not sense the unmistakable taste-datum that had been inscribed into my consciousness, the tangy tomato puree with which the Standard Market Grill has slathered all of the many pizzas that I have ordered in the past. The sponginess of the bread did not compensate for the untastiness of the pizza-complex.

If Nicolette was correct, and she wasn’t, and there WAS tomato sauce on the pizza, then why was the pizza sauce both invisible and untasteable? Again, I have ordered many pizzas from the Lincoln Park location in the past, and all of them were blessed with a tomatoey tang.

I wrote the management on this matter and never received a response. This is the level of customer service that I have come to expect from the Lincoln Park branch of the Standard Market Grill.

444 West Fullerton Parkway is a challenging space for any business to occupy. In my ten years of living in Lincoln Park, I have seen four businesses at 444 West Fullerton Parkway flounder and founder, fail and flail. The Standard Market Grill is struggling, and it will not stand.

Copyright 2014 by Joseph Suglia

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17 thoughts on “Ordering a Pizza at the Standard Market Grill in Lincoln Park

  1. I’ve had exactly the same experience! We were in a restaurant and our pizza arrived without any tomato sauce and there was no way we could convince our server that it was missing! That restaurant closed a few months later! I am looking forward to reading some more of your writing! Best!

  2. It’s not clear tome, but do you live so far from it that you couldn’t take the tomatoless pizza back to them. It seems you could get some satisfaction from that. I don’t see any from your action which was to write about it. At least that’s what I would have done. There is such good pizza available in Chi-town seems a shame to settle for less.

  3. Your pizza saga is unfortunate. However, I believe the experience was worth it, just so I could read paragraphs 2-4 of your story. I love your description of the pizza, as well as your snippets of sarcasm. Right up my alley… 🙂

  4. Pingback: Selected Essays, Squibs, and Short Fiction by Joseph Suglia | drjosephsuglia

  5. Pingback: SELECTED ESSAYS AND SQUIBS by Joseph Suglia | Selected Essays and Squibs by Joseph Suglia

  6. Pingback: Selected Essays and Squibs by Dr. Joseph Suglia | Selected Essays and Squibs by Joseph Suglia

  7. I have had this happen as well. I think the person taking the order took it literally when I said just cheese. I assumed they knew to include sauce. I know say cheese, and remind them I want sauce.

  8. Pingback: Selected Essays and Squibs by Dr. Joseph Suglia: A Table of Contents | Selected Essays and Squibs by Joseph Suglia

  9. Pingback: Selected Essays and Squibs by Joseph Suglia: Table of Contents | Selected Essays and Squibs by Joseph Suglia

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