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Cincinnati Bites
Grilled Cheese Sandwich from Cafe De Wheels

Posted Friday, June 3, 2011
Note: the following review is for a restaurant that has since closed.

Cincy by The Slice just opened their second location last week. The new pizza joint is fittingly located in a small, wedge-shaped building in Deer Park, right by the traffic light where Plainfield Road and Blue Ash Road meet.

When I told my girlfriend I'd be ordering their signature "Pickle Pie" pizza for myself while she enjoyed her "Girls' Night Out," she replied, "Ewww, that sounds weird." After reflecting a moment, she added, "Save me a slice."

Parking is near impossible at the building itself; there's a small patch of gravel around it near the railroad tracks, but you'd be lucky to fit your car there. A better option would be to park along North Avenue and then (cautiously) walk across the street.

When I stepped through the front door, I very nearly felt like I had simultaneously exited out the back. The place has no room for anything but pizza ovens. Obviously, the Deer Park location is carry out and delivery only. I recognized one of the owners, James Lawson, from his photo in Metromix. He smiled warmly, retrieved my piping hot carry-out order and sent me happily on my way.

I'm a bit of a dill pickle fan. The little wedges are throw-away items for many people, a restaurant afterthought often accompanying sandwich entrees. I always look forward to them. As a child, I enjoyed the sour taste so much that I used to drink small cups of pickle juice from the jar, mixed with a little soy sauce. Now that will put some hair on your chest, Sheila.

Half Pickle Pie and Half Veggie Pizza from Cincy by the Slice

The pizza certainly looked handsome. The crust was crisp, thin but not overly so and the pie was not over-cheesed. Each slice harbored a thin layer of mild, slightly sweet tomato sauce that paired well with the briny, vinegary bite from the dill pickle slices. I liked that there were actually small nuggets of tomatoes in the sauce, lending an element of freshness to the pie. The addition of black and white pepper also complimented the pairing well. The pickle slices weren't over-utilized; there were just enough of them to give the pizza its distinctive taste.

Overall, I was impressed with the combination of flavors coming from simple ingredients. Cincy by the Slice also serves three varieties of Stromboli; a number of hoagie sandwiches; buffalo wings; and a couple interesting desserts, like the Apple Cinnamon "Flop Topper," a cinnamon-sugar pastry stuffed with green apples and drizzled with caramel sauce.

One might argue the pizza market is over-saturated, but then again, there aren't a lot of pickle pies floating around out there. Cincy by the Slice creates a need you never knew you had, then helps you satisfy it.

Cincy by the Slice on Urbanspoon
Cincy by the Slice

Price: Moderately Expensive ($11 - $16 per person)
Service: Good
Rating: 3.0 out of 43.0 stars

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Ratings Legend
four stars = Outstanding
three stars = Good
two stars = Fair
one star = Poor
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